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GM Petrov’s New Strategies in the Middlegame - Vd20: Playing against Backward Pawns

Opening: B24: Sicilian Closed 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 (without 3...g6 (B25–B26))

Player(s): Smyslov, Denker

In this video, we will see how to fight against a backward pawn.
There are usually a few steps which you have to try to do. First, the pawn has to be blocked. If it is only with one pawn, it's not enough because sometimes the opponent could try to push it forward and trade. Ideally, we must have two pawns preventing the pawn from being moved, let's say e4 and c4 against d6. And, of course, those 2 pawns should be protected from other pawns so as not to be weak themselves. Then we have to try to trade the active minor pieces of our opponent and leave only those who are passive and are forced to defend this weak pawn. After that, we start to put pressure on the pawn and try to win it, combined with other active ideas.

Teacher's library (147) B24 Smyslov Denker midgame

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