How to Play Black against 1.d4 & c4/Nf3 (Chess opening course)



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digital_downloadGM Susan Polgar

The Polgar Method #04

The Polgar Method, as applied to the opening, encourages understanding of the major plans for both sides as opposed to merely memorizing a series of moves.

This way, when the game inevitably takes a different course, we still know what to aim for, what to avoid and what to watch out for.

The King’s Indian Defense is a powerful attacking opening and was used by both Kasparov and Fischer throughout their careers. Despite White’s wide choice of approaches, Black has strong responses to all of them. Many of which will catch unprepared opponents by surprise.

In How to Play Black against 1.d4, Susan recommends lines which are easier to learn that some of the more theoretical variations but just as sound and full of resources.

You will see recurring themes in each line, such as Knights going to the edge of the board before taking up more aggressive posts; attacking White’s center with …c6 and …f5 and making temporary sacrifices to open the position in your favor.

Watching the model games will let you see the ideas in action and make them stick in your memory. By the end of this course, you’ll be able to play the King’s Indian Defense with confidence and will have a reliable response to 1.d4 (and 1.c4/Nf3) for life.


  1. The King’s Indian Defense, instructive games
  2. The Main Line (5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2)
  3. The Fianchetto Line (4.g3 0-0 5.Bg2)
  4. The Samisch Variation (5.f3 0-0 6.Be3)
  5. The Four Pawns Attack (5.f4)
  6. The Averbakh Variation (6.Bg5)

Additional information

Running Time

1 hour 37 minutes