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Closed Sicilian Theory

  • #1

    If anyone specializes in this opening, or has a big opening database, could you give me some pointers? I'll include as much analysis as I can. This game was played earlier with a 1700 on here, I attacked prematurely and had to perpetual check. Any comments would be great, thanks. My notes should come up automatically, if not--open the move list.



  • #2

    OK i fixed the typos. Sorry!

  • #3

    Ok Ive found a win, but it's not a mate, just a much better position. Someone suggsted to me that Bxc6 may be the equalizer, butthat f5 was a good intuitional move. I looked, and found this to be accurate. The main point is that after Qg5+ Kg8 Nf4, Qd8 does not work due to Qh6! when white will Snag the hanging bishop on c6 while black defends. The result is 2 pieces for a rook and just a better game. The theat (nh5, Qg7 or Nf6 mate) keeps black from making any move that defends the Nc6 from defending the knight.

    Alas, i did not look at Kh6, just that Qd8 stopped the check on g5.


    Thanks, sittingpawn, for clueing me in. :)

  • #4

    i push f4 asap

  • #5

    No cat. keeping f4 black so Bh6 can be played is the more modern treatment. Also h4 may be more useful if white castles QS.

  • #6

    I'm not upset. :)  I severly disagree with analyzing with engines, and I quit doing so until I break 2200 OTB rating. Why not just do the analysis and work yourself? Capablanca didn't use Rybka.

  • #7

    Mistakes and losing are in fact the best way for you to get better. It's called reinforcement. Winning gives you positive reinforcement for your current level of play. Classical conditioning.

  • #8

    You get a stronger probably winning game with an immediate 20.Qg5+ Kh8 21.Qf6+ Kg8 and now you are looking for the opportunity to play Nf4, Nh5, Qg7# -- Black has some defensive resources (starting with c4+) but the slightest misstep brings him ruin. ... I thought this up myself, then verified it with software. That's a good use of software, IMO.  Capablanca didn't "need" Rybka in part because no one else had it. And, well, we can wish ourselves geniuses... God knows I have, but I've found it doesn't change anything. 

  • #9

    Well I didn't criticize other's use of engines. I'm done, though.

  • #10
    meniscus wrote:

    Well I didn't criticize other's use of engines. I'm done, though.

    It kind of felt like you did have implicit criticism of other's use...  not that I think you should be FORCED to use them or anything... I wasn't trying to be too antagonistic meniscus... just a little tweak... I hope you aren't offended. Honestly, I find that engines keep me from getting too full of myself... I sometimes get up on my high horse thinking I have a mighty chess lecture to deliver, and then i check with the engine and discover I know a lot less than i thought (this just happened in fact) ...  that's a good use of the software don't you think? :)  Just saying --  Surely there are intelligent and unintelligent ways to use any tool.

  • #11
    meniscus wrote:

    I'm not upset. :)  I severly disagree with analyzing with engines, and I quit doing so until I break 2200 OTB rating. Why not just do the analysis and work yourself? Capablanca didn't use Rybka.

    I think this makes good sense.  Especially since your opponents will be human beings and will react like human beings do, not like an engine.  Playing engine moves without understanding will not help make one a better player.

  • #12
    Catalyst_Kh wrote:

    If i understand you correctly, you want to claim, that finding my mystake by myself after repeating it 20 times is better than finding it after only one game with help of fritz. If so, then i totally disagree. For those 19 remaining games i can find other 19 mistakes. And more important - every next game i already would be playing better, so after 20 games i will not just make one step of improvement, but already would be much more competent and improve my play a lot.

    If you're talking about one opening or one move, perhaps. Or, if you're talking about the point of chess being to win more often. I study for understanding's sake. I'm not ever going to be world champion, I'm  just a student of the game itself.  It was a grandmaster who told me not to use engines until I make master. I'm going to take his advice.

  • #13

    I see both points. I think analyzing with a friend or friends is better than either alone or with a computer, because you both explain ideas AND miss less tactics. how's that? Now if you wouldn't mind folks, let's limit discussion of this topic to the article and opening in question. Is that cool?

    That being said, I think I'll keep my posts limited to my blog if not.

  • #14


    i do have that book and it's not a good source at all on the CS--how can it be it's a few pages of a small book for those who DONT want to get caught up in theory and specifics--it's in the intro!! It's a moot point unless black plans on playing ...h5 a move later, since he can't after Bh6. since the ...h5 is risky due to h3 and g4 with a quick line opener, it doesn't really matter which move he plays now.

    I'll tell you why, but for other ideas you should get BOTH Gary Lane's Ultimate Closed Sicilian AND Daniel King's 'Complete Closed Sicilian'. It matters not when black plays ...b5, which he eventually will do. It doesn't change anything since ..b5 and ..b4 won't pick up a tempo unless Qd2 has not been played by white.

    then the standard Nc3-d1 guards b2, and black only gains the space which white has effectively decided to sacrifice anyway. he might get it too early in some cases: keep reading.

    in a closed opening with flank attacks, ...b5 seems to make sense to us, committing to the race asap. But the goal black is aiming at is a very subjective target: open lines. But... remember, White attacks the king.

    Here's why I want black to play ...b5 there. I really hope he's doing it because of the John Emms book, but he's not because that's a book for white piece players. If black breaks through he moves on to another plan, flooding in the major pieces (the turning maneuver).

    Then if white has any fear, he'll exchange pieces and winning chances go down drastically for both players.

    If white is AWOL but behind in the race, the open space behind the closed center is a stage for lateral attack. That might dynamically save black's king by forcing a retreat by white, or it might win if white goes all-or nothing.

    It's true that getting a move on with ...b5 is more in the spirit of that strategy, but if he's playing ...Ne7 at any time, the tempi will remain identical. then b5 to ...b4 will be played, forcing Nd1, and whenever ...Ne7 happens, so will  Be3-h6, and it will take the same amount of familiar moves in both cases.

    White is actually HOPING black rushes the QS attack since his strategical nirvana happens both A) he's uncommitted, retaining flexibility in his flank attack and B)  black's pawn storm reaches its zenith and he lacks active enough play. 

    then black will still have to deal with the question of white's attack, as he hasn't played any cards yet. h4-h5? g4-g5 or g4-f4-f5? That is a headache for black.

    why do i hope for that? because with nothing to attack on the QS and less force on the kingside, White's attack is often decisive.. make sense?

    meanwhile it's often the case that black plays calmly and develops, as in ...Ne7. A)leaving himself the option of a safer...0-0-0 (sometimes ...0-0-0!!/!? etc) as Gelfand and other 2700+ players have done, B) white can't predict black's hand C) black can still play ...h5 and ...0-0-0 as attacking ideas in less tempi (...b5 doesn't help that idea)

     Curiously, if black retains the 0-0-0 option, Then it's white who needs to slow down, as he often ends up in he same boat: pushing his king flank at thin air while black (without your ...b5) is much safer. 

  • #15

    I should say, though, that I played the above game a long time ago and before I was where I'm at now with hundreds of games since in the closed.

  • #16

    I have the Ultimate Closed Sicilian picked up for a good price via Amazon and it is definely a good way to understand the opening with lots of useful pointers.


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