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Miroslav Filip vs Stefan Szabo
Bucharest (1953), Bucharest ROU, rd 3, Jan-??
Queen's Gambit Declined: Exchange. Positional Variation (D35)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-09-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: After 4. cxd5 exd5: "This exchange of pawns gives rise to the so-called Carlsbad structure. White allows his opponent's c8-bishop more freedom than would usually be the case in the Queen's Gambit Declined, but in return, White fixes the central pawn-structure. He has a half-open c-file, and a pawn majority in the centre. White has three principal plans for the middlegame. One is to castle queenside and attack Black's king by means of a pawn-storm. This is the plan we saw used in Game 1 [ Averbakh vs Sarvarov, 1959 ]. Another is to use his central majority, in similar fashion to Furman vs Lilienthal, 1949 (Game 26). In this case, White will usually develop by Bd3 and Nge2. The third main plan is the classic 'Minority Attack,' in which White advances his b-pawn, aiming to create weaknesses in Black's queenside structure. The Minority Attack is something of an exception to the general rules of chess strategy, in that it is usually correct to attack on the side of the board where one has a pawn-majority. The Carlsbad structure is somewhat different, however, because although Black has a pawn-majority on the queenside, White's control of the half-open c-file means that he is the one who is better able to take the initiative on that side of the board. Black, by contrast, usually looks for counterplay against White's king, in some cases by means of a minority attack of his own, advancing ... f5-f4." Steve Giddins, "50 Essential Chess Lessons," Gambit Publications, London, 2006.
Mar-17-09  notyetagm: Filip vs S Szabo, 1953

<tpstar: ... The third main plan is the classic 'Minority Attack,' in which White advances his b-pawn, aiming to create weaknesses in Black's queenside structure. The Minority Attack is something of an exception to the general rules of chess strategy, in that it is usually correct to attack on the side of the board where one has a pawn-majority. <<<The Carlsbad structure is somewhat different, however, because although Black has a pawn-majority on the queenside, White's control of the half-open c-file means that he is the one who is better able to take the initiative on that side of the board.>>>>

Wow, I have *never* fully understood this critical idea until now: White can attack the Black queenside pawn majority because the half-open c-file gives *him*, White(!), the initiative on the queenside. Black, on the other hand, has an extra pawn on the queenside <BUT NO HALF-OPEN FILE>.

I never understood when I should or should not attack an enemy pawn majority with my pawns. Now I understand the difference: <<<does a half-open file give *me* the initiative on that side of the board?>>>

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