Destroying 3 Tricky Sicilian Sidelines

Destroying 3 Tricky Sicilian Sidelines

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Greetings chess lovers!

With many stuck at home it comes as no surprise that many players will start playing online blitz. That said, there will be players who will want to experiment with aggressive variations against your beloved Sicilian defense. Especially if surprised, black can find himself losing miniatures as the result of an inexorable initiative. However, I promise ways for black to get an advantage against all lines. These are original lines you may also want to practice occasionally. 

My favorite part is that the book provides ample analysis with multiple options for us to chose from. There's always some rare, interesting line they've cooked up which diffuses the problems immediately.

On a final note, I won't include the Smith-Morra Gambit. It's been heavily researched and eviscerated by @LogoCzar in his famed Chessable course.

Instead I shall delve into redoubtable sidelines which have been less explored yet cause headaches to the unprepared opponent. I'm continuing my deep dive into Taming Wild Openings. (TWO) Which I've already addressed in the following blogs: and also

Deferred Wing Gambit

My notes: This is possibly less dangerous than the normal Wing Gambit (2.b4 without including Nf3) because inserting Nf3 and e6 is less helpful for white. White gets a swifter development advantage although, as we shall see, white's compensation is insufficient against precise play.

TWO verdict: This is an effective way to quickly knockout a weak or inexperienced player.

"White's often tempted to respond to the Sicilian thrusting forward the b4 pawn as a gambit, with the idea that when black captures then white be able to establish a strong center much more easily. That's easier than done."

Wing Gambit

My notes: I remember a local player panicking before the game about a player who he knew for sure would play the Wing Gambit and that he had nothing prepared (he was mostly an endgame focused player). But TWO has a convincing refutation which takes less effort to memorize and makes you confident if you ever face this gambit.

TWO verdict: This line can lead to entertaining, energetic, and original positions which can always be recommended in classical OTB game. Even so, black needs to be careful about the venom contained in this line and must be prepared to face it in any OTB game.

"The Wing Gambit has simple idea: White gives up a wing pawn to establish a central presence. The problem is that black still has his 2 central pawns and fairly easy development."

2.b3/Czerniak Variation

My notes: I recall IM Lawrence Trent making a DVD series for Chessbase recommending this line for white. It's not super aggressive but black can land into unfamiliar territory and it's considerably sounder than the previous gambits.

TWO verdict: This line can lead to enterprising play with chances for both sides though objectively black should reach comfortable equality with the correct set-up.

"This was played in Czerniak-Benko, Netanya 1969. 2.b3 has been heavily promoted in a well-known children's chess book, but when it's been played on the grandmaster level, black scored well.