In this book Alexander Khalifman has analyzed the sharp variations, which have always been the focus of White's ambitions to refute the Dragon in a concrete and swift fashion (following the famous thesis of Robert Fischer: h2-h4-h5 and a checkmate...).
We do not assert that the Dragon has been refuted, but we are practically convinced that Black has great problems to solve in all the variations and the players for the White side, who have studied this book thoroughly will be completely prepared to face all possible intricacies of this opening system.
In the first part of the book we have dealt with the Accelerated Dragon, this is the order of moves 2...Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6.
We should mention here that by playing like this Black allows his opponent to enter the rather unpleasant Maroczy system, in which Black's prospects of creating active counterplay are just minimal in comparison to the classical Dragon variation.
I would recommend book 3a of the series "Opening for White According to Kramnik - 1.Nf3" to players who are interested in the correct treatment of the Maroczy system. In this book we have analyzed the more aggressive plan 5.Nc3 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 (Yugoslav Accelerated Dragon), which usually leads to the main lines of the Yugoslav Attack in the Dragon variation.
Black has some options to avoid similar developments and he can even force White to castle short in some variations. Still, all this is usually connected with a loss of tempi for him, or positional concessions and Black fails to solve his opening problems in this fashion as a rule.
In the second part of the book we have dealt with the main lines of the Dragon variation, that is the order of moves 2...d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6. We recommend to White to play 6.Be3 Bg7 7.f3 0-0 (We have also analyzed some relatively modern lines connected with 7...a6.) 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4.
Our task has become more complex lately, because at the beginning of the year 2008 the Dragon variation attracted the attention of the Norwegian genius Magnus Carlsen and there have appeared numerous interesting games every month since.
We hope that even in the most fashionable lines, some of which we have had to add to the book almost in an on-line regime, we have succeeded in pointing out the most promising concepts for White.
Part 1. The Accelerated Dragon 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.Nc3
- various; 5...Bg7 6.Be3 various; 6...Nf6 7.Bc4 without 7...d6, 7...Qa5 and 7...0-0
- 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 d6 8.f3 without 8...Bd7
- 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 d6 8.f3 Bd7
- 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 Qa5
- 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 0-0 8.Bb3 without 8...a5
- 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 0-0 8.Bb3 a5
Part 2. The Sicilian Dragon 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3
- various without 6...Bg7
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 various without 7...Nc6 and 7...0-0
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Qd2 various without 8...Bd7 and 8...0-0
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Qd2 Bd7 9.0-0-0 without 9...Rc8
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Qd2 Bd7 9.0-0-0 Rc8
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 various; 8...Nc6 9.Bc4 various without 9...Nxd4, 9...Qa5 and 9...Bd7
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Nxd4
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Nd7
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 various without 10...Nxd4, 10...Qa5 and 10...Rc8
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Nxd4
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Qa5
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.0-0-0 various without 11...Ne5
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.0-0-0 Ne5 12.Kb1 without 12...Re8 and 12...Nc4
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.0-0-0 Ne5 12.Kb1 Re8
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.0-0-0 Ne5 12.Kb1 Nc4 13.Bxc4 Rxc4 14.g4 various
- 6...Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.0-0-0 Ne5 12.Kb1 Nc4 13.Bxc4 Rxc4 14.g4 b5
Index of Variations