This game was against a 1730 rated player using Philidor Defense, something I haven’t had a lot of experience with but I don’t mind playing instead of the Spanish with 2…Nc6. The Bishop feels natural on c4 targeting the f7 pawn and assisting in the middle protecting d5. My rating is conservatively about 1200 right now and to be able to have such an interesting game come out in my favor was a great feeling. It includes a couple positional and tactical sacrifices that are always awesome when on your side.
In this post I wanted to talk about the idea of creating and exploiting stacked pawns that can occur early on in a game. When I first started playing I opened with the Ruy Lopez as many new players do. It was common, well studied and had a solid set up for white with good attacking and tactical chances. I traded the Bishop for Knight on c6 early instead of keeping pins and pressure on pieces, of course later on I learned of the benefits of the latter. I wont discount the idea of stacking an opponents pawns early on, especially if the player is lower rated. It provides and early weakness and a clear target to work towards from the opening. As you’ll see in this game I was able to stack Blacks pawns early and plant a Knight on e6 waiting until it was clear to attack. Doubled pawns aren’t always a problem, the second game is one I played as Black where I used the stacked pawns to my advantage and involved them into my position and attack instead of letting it become a weakness.
In this game I play White against Owen’s Defense which is 1.e4 b6 where Black’s aim is early fianchetto of the Queenside Bishop aim towards the center of the board. While fianchetto is usually a good plan to protect the Bishop and give it more scope doing so early on concedes the center to White. In Classic style I continue with 2.d4 and surprisingly Black proceeded to fianchetto his Kingside Bishop as well. Once I jumped the Knights into the action it was almost a perfect example of a Classical and Hyper modern take on the opening even if not done in the most efficient way possible. In the game White is able to control the center and continue playing along the Queenside flank as Black’s position becomes cramped and development is halted under the pressure of a central and flank side attack.