[November 24, 2017] Updated Opening Line from GM Dragan Paunović:
English Opening, Hedgehog Variation with 7. d4

[Line 045 : 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 c5 4. g3 b6 5. Bg2 Bb7 6. O-O Be7 7. d4]

Line 045 covers the main line of the Hedgehog Variation of the English Opening. After 7… cxd4, recapturing the pawn with Knight 8. Nxd4 leads to simplified positions, where Black can easily equalize.

On the other hand, 8. Qxd4 poses significantly more problems for Black: in the main 7… cxd4 8. Qxd4 d6 9. Bg5 a6 10. Bxf6! he has difficulties reaching equality. Black can get solid, yet passive positions, where he has to wait for White’s action, which may not be to everyone’s taste.

[Diagram: White to Move] This position has occurred in a number of recent computer games. How should White make use of his active pieces, and the weakness of the f5 square?

Click here to see the line in our viewer…

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