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The Sniper
02-18-2013, 11:28 PM
Post: #1
The Sniper
At club level FM Charlie Storey's black defence, The Sniper, has become increasingly popular. The basic plan for black is to play ...g6, ...Bg7, ...c5 against almost any white moves. How should the Zuka player respond?

I recently acquired a copy of Storey's book and, as expected, the Zuka move order is not mentioned. (It is assumed that white will play e4 not e3) However it could transpose to a Zuka vs Benoni style position on move 5 if black plays ...Nf6. But Storey only gives ...Nf6 as an optional side line. His main line is 5...e5 planning to play for ...f5(maybe f4), ...a6 and ...b5, while leaving the Knight on g8 for as long as possible.

I'm still trying to figure the optimal Zuka move order. The Sniper is a system style defence with lots of transpositional oportunities. Also after moves like ...c5 d5 Storey advocates something called the Sniper Sacrifice whereby the B/g7 is exchanged for the N/c3. The idea is to play ...Qa5 and target the pawn on c3 and get white into unfamiliar positions. But this also appears to be optional in Benoni style lines.

The main line against non-Zuka d4+c4 openings is:

1.d4 g6
2.c4 Bg7
3.e4 c5 (3.Nc3 c5 4.d5 Bxc3 5.bxc3 Qa5)
4.d5 d6
5.Nc3 e5

From here Storey's plan of playing ...f5 doesn't seem to make sense against a Zuka setup because we play e3 and not e4. But can black proceed with the Benko style ...a6 ...b5 plan while keeping the Knight on g8 thereby avoiding a direct Zuka transposition.
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