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Great annotations and a well-executed game plan, chessmagic5. In response to 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 g6 3. c3 Bg7 4. d4 cxd4 5.Bc4, how about 5 ... Nf6, attacking the e4 pawn? If 6. e5, then ... Ng4. 7. h3 begs the knight to take e5. 7. cxd4 is met by 7 ... d5 (8. exd5 e.p. brings out the black queen to d6, which looks like a strong position at this point.) 8. h3 dxc4 9. hxg4, and black should either shore up the queenside with 9 ... b5 or get the king to safety 9 ... 0 - 0. before grabbing the loose pawn on g4.
I'd rather call the (Hyper)Accelerated Dragon "Black's agony to avoid suffocation".
All he can do against the powerful Maroczy Bind is sit back and defend passively.
And while this strategy might work against players with low technique, against strong opposition Black may expect just one or two draws out of ten games.
Thanks for your reply, pfren. It sounds like you know this from experience. From what little I've read on the Maroczy Bind, it seems to be the strongest reply to the Sicilian defense (by the number of chapters devoted to it). It seems like the only way to deal with the Bind is (essentially) to attack c5 or e5 in order for black to play d5 without dropping a pawn for nothing. Is that how you see it?
Black can never (almost) afford ...d5 in the Maroczy. This is an option in the Hedgehog system, which is another beast (quite sound but difficult to play- essentially "the art of doin nothing" both colors involved).
There are a few "active" replies to the Maroczy. Pity they are unsound.
The sound replies are just depressing: Black has just to sit on his limited space, trying to make the apropriate piece exchanges, and having to suffer inferior endgames, queenside attacks, kingside attacks, as well as other unpleasant things...
How does the alapin variation do against the hyper accelerated dragon?
Welcome jphillips! I suspect the hyper-accelerated Dragon would have more success against the Alapin than it would against the Maroczy Bind. The fianchettoed dark-square bishop has at least one of white's center pawn phalanx in its sights and ... d5 is more doable (probably early in the game instead of later). Then again, I'm just going on intuition. I defer to pfren :)
What's the best way to learn "the art of doin' nothing"?
Sergey Shipov's monstrous 2-volume book on the Hedgehog, as well as studying games of the great masters of the opening.
I think the hedgehog requires a very tactical eye. If you simply make your moves on autpilot you'll quickly find yourself in an inferior position because you didnt anticipate/stop the opponents plan.I highly recommend studying mihai subas games. I believe he is/was one of the most talented hedgehog users we ever had. Another strong name is the Russian Swede Ulf andersson.
Thank for the suggestions, I'll look into those (or rather, note those suggestions down and go back to them after my chess improves a bit).
When people say "hedgehog", does that imply a Maroczy bind as well?
Anything else like Hack Attack?
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