Wednesday, February 24, 2016

London System Why Play Qb6

Against the London System, my master level opponent Joe Bacon chose a thematic 4.c3 Qb6. Here's why that strategy is logical. White plays Bf4 early in the London which leaves b2 undefended. Therefore after ...c6 or ...c5, the Black lady can slide up to Qb6 with eyes on the poisoned b-pawn. But is it really poisoned? That's the point.

The London is a solid method of forward development. It resembles gravity continually pulling a glacier downhill toward the water, one slow inch per day. When a big chunk falls off, the progress is obvious. Most of the time it looks like nothing is happening. The moves d4 and Bf4 do not carry the speedy threats that their counterparts e4 and Bc4 do. Black has time to chop off the London b2 pawn if allowed.

White opposes the Black queen with his own lovely lady, as I played 5.Qb3. The women stared at each other for a while. The advantage of letting your opponent make the first capture is that the side with the recapture gets an open file. See my 10.axb3. I did have good chances near the end, but I was happy to draw my higher rated opponent.

My Chess Training Repertoire this Thursday covers the London System. Sign up if you want to receive it by email. Also, starting next week I will go back to daily blog posts. One week from today will be number 1800.

Sawyer (2003) - Bacon (2214), corr APCT Q-139 (3), 07.1993 begins 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bf4 c5 4.c3 Qb6 5.Qb3 Nf6 6.e3 Be7 7.Nbd2 Nbd7 [7...Nc6 8.Be2=] 8.h3 0-0 9.Be2 Qxb3 [9...Qc6=] 10.axb3 b6 11.Bb5 [11.dxc5+/=] 11...Bb7 12.0-0 a6 13.Bd3 Ne4 14.Rfd1 b5 [14...Rfc8=] 15.Ne5 Nxe5 16.Bxe5 Nxd2 17.Rxd2 Rfc8 [17...c4 18.bxc4 dxc4 19.Bf1=] 18.dxc5 Bxc5 19.b4 Be7 20.g4 f6 21.Bg3 g5 22.f3 Bd8 [22...Kf7!?] 23.e4!? [This leads to equality. White stands better with 23.h4!+/= ] 23...dxe4 24.Bxe4 Bxe4 25.fxe4 Rc4 1/2-1/2

You may also like: King Pawn (1.e4 e5) and Sicilian (1.e4 c5)
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