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Tips for playing the Bogart variation of the Bongcloud opening. (Bongcloud-Bogart)

Tips for playing the Bogart variation of the Bongcloud opening. (Bongcloud-Bogart)

Jan 31, 2011, 7:13 AM 9

When deciding to play the bongcloud opening, here is what you may find yourself in if black decides to develop both his Knights in his first 2 moves (starting with Nc3)! But first, it is critical that you take note of some key concepts to playing the Bogat variation of the Bongcloud. Firstly, the Queen is not all that important in this variation and you shouldn't hesitate in letting her go for the sake of gaining tempo. The key here is getting your king to the center of the board asap, and then developing your queenside pawns into a "Pawn-Fort" in the center where your King can hold out as a "gate-keeper" until we can muster a second drive deep into black's rear. Focus on a pawn-fort (minimum 3 pawns) that points towards a7, this is where we want to focus our attack, by flanking, and letting our king control the d-file. Finally, use any left-over minor pieces to keep that f5 square vacant! (for reasons that will be evident) And for Pete's sake!... Protect that h2 pawn! The last thing we need is black flanking you! You must also remember to ALWAYS promote your pawns to knights to confound black's gameplan. This variation is not for the novice...

So, to summarize: (1) Blitz your king to the center while developing your queenside pawns. (2) Use your minor pieces as fodder to developing your pawn-fort and let your king act as the gate-keeper to the d-file. (3)With your pawn-fort developed, use left-over minor pieces to keep f5 vacant, and protect h2. (4) Flank black by attacking a7.  (5) Let your queen be captured to gain tempo, especially early in the game where getting your king out is so critical! (5) And finally, mess with your opponent's mind by always promoting to knights!

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