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The English Opening

The English Opening

Nov 27, 2010, 10:15 PM 8

  You're at a tournament and you sit down to play someone. First move is c4! What do you do? After all time you spent studying 1.d4 and 1.e4, you encounter c4. What matters the most is that you hardly or never even studied c4. As you know, C-4 is an explosive. And in chess, if you only studied e4 or/and d4, c4 hits you like a bomb in your face! So what the hell do you do? At the next tournament you have at least you know the main lines to the English opening. 

What makes the English Opening so unique and special?

  • It is the usually first flank opening a beginner learns.
  • When Bobby Fischer was in power, the Russian players were preparing for a match against Bobby Fischer. Their mistake was studying only e4. At the tournament, Bobby played c4 surprising them.
  • Most black players don't know how to respond to it.
  • Most world champions have employed this opening to their advantage.


 These are only a few variations. There are many more. There are many traps to the opening making life dangerous for white so if you study this for a tournament and your opponent plays this, you can probably secure an easy win. Please note that this opening in my opinion is quite passive, but there are two ways to control the center. One, from a distance and two, by advancing in the center. The idea of this opening is to control the center from a distance and make your opponent's pawns advance creating weaknesses. And if you play against this opening, keep in mind that if your opponent attacks your flanks, attack the center! This concludes my introduction of the English Opening. Please study more of this fascinating opening and please comment! Thanks for reading!


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