Winning Pawn Structures: Sacing on h6 with an IQP: Part 2
Let's learn some more about the Isolated Queen's Pawn. The game today brought us an IQP via the Caro-Kann Panov-Botvinnik and features a typical formation that you should burn into your memory as its the ideal piece formation for a sacrifice on h6; in fact several of the games we'll look at after this one all feature similar piece formations.
The primary different from Kamsky's game from PART 1 is the location of the the King's Knight which in this game is located on e5 rather than e2 meaning that when the actions starts, the Knight is much better positioned to assist in the attack that follows the h6 sacrifice.
Lets see a picture!
Notice four of Whites pieces are already trained on the Kingside with the remaining Rooks are able to join via lifts on the e-file and the c3 Knight via e4. What a wonderful thing a little space is, right?
As always, I am providing in-blog game notation but you have the option to watch the game analysis at YouTube MY CHANNEL or via the embedded video.
Learning Objective: Watch the g6 square. After White induces h6 the light square around his King become weak which leads to a critical weakening of the g-file and in particular g6 which White converges his pieces around supporting a decisive break though.
Summary: As we saw in this game, the sacrifice on on h6 wasn't about an attack on the h-file, but rather the opening of the g-file. The open King position allowed strong mating threats forcing Black to return his material leaving White with a material advantage of two connected passed pawns. Immediate mate isn't the only positive out come of a sacrifice, and we must make sure to keep an eye open for converting into a winning endgame just as we say in Kamsky's game.
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