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Corner pawn crushing the fianchetto structure (Part II)

Corner pawn attack

As we saw in the first part of the article, the corner pawn attack against the fianchetto structure is a very typical idea when playing with opposite side castles. However, it may also be used in other types of middle game positions. h4 idea In the position shown to the right, White has an interesting exchange sacrifice idea: 1.Rxd6!? exd6 2.Qxf6 Rd7 and there is more than just compensation for the exchange. The white bishop clearly dominates on the board. However, White did not want to force the game yet and decided to postpone sacrifices until a more comfortable moment. He played 1. h4! Now, h4-h5 becomes a very unpleasant threat. White can weaken the black king’s position with a simple h4-h5-hxg6, and open the h file for the Rh4 maneuver, or he can push the h pawn to the h6 square. Maybe the second idea is more dangerous as the black king starts feeling very uncomfortable due to the weakness of the g7 square. At the same time, we have to mention that moves like h4 include a psychological attack too. The opponent suffers with doubts as to whether he should stop the h pawn or just ignore it? In this game, he decided to react against the corner pawn attack. 1… h5?  Unfortunately for Black, this move weakens the king’s pawn chain, and especially the g6 pawn. It becomes a decisive factor. A decent alternative would be: 1… Rd8!? 2.h5! Kg7± White has a solid advantage, but there is still a lot of play. 2. Rd6! After h4 h5 moves, this exchange sacrifice wins. 2… exd6 3. Qxf6 The key difference is that if Black protects the d6 pawn with 3… Rd7 now, then Bd5! wins the f7 or g6 pawn. Now, we see why 1… h5 was a mistake. 3…  Rf8 4.Rd6 Qc5 5.Bd5 Kh7 6.g4! (See the diagram)typical g4! The final strike and logical conclusion of the h corner pawn attack. The black king becomes exposed. 6… Qa3 Or 6… hxg4 7.h5 +- 7.gxh5 Qc1+ 8.Kh2 Qh6 9.Bxf7 Qg7 10.hxg6+ Kh8 11.Qg5 1 – 0   To learn more about the middle game planning, I definitely recommend you watch the DVD Your Winning Plan – Middlegame Chess Cours. Aroshidze 2537  –  Ibarra 2387      2009. Aroshidze - Ibarra White has a solid advantage. The question is how to continue improving the position? 22.h4!? Decent alternatives are 22.Bd4± or 22.Bh6± 22… Rad8 This time, Black ignores the h pawn advance. In the event of of 22… h5, White could continue with 23.Bd4 a4 24.Bxg7 Kxg7 25.f4!, attacking the weakened g6 pawn and the black king generally. Then 25… axb3 26.axb3 Nd7 27.Rf1 Nf6 28.f5! with a powerful attack. 23.h5  Now, Black gets another kind of headache. White may play h5-h6 and then exchange the bishops or simply keep pressuring the g6 pawn. 23… e6 24.Nc3 gxh5?  Black loses his patience. His king can hardly be protected now.Aroshidze - Ibarra final He should just have kept waiting by playing 24… Qe7± and tried to hold the position. 25. Nb5 Qc6 26. Bh6 (Look at the diagram) Be5?  This is a mistake in a difficult position. A slightly better move was probably: 26… Nb7 27.Bxg7 Kxg7 28.Qg5+ Kh8 29.Qf6+ Kg8 30.f4 +-, but objectively the end is near. 27.Qg5+ Kh8 28.Nxd6! and Black gets checkmated or loses a lot of material. 1 – 0 Watch These Videos For More Info About The Middle Game Planning: – Master The Middlegame – Gm Damian Lemos – Understanding The Concept Of Middlegame Based On Opening Strategy – Gm Roman Dzindzichashvili – Learn The Middlegame 1-2-3 – Im Andrew Martin

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