The information explosion has led to a massive increase in opening theory. But how often do you win a game with a prepared line?
What gives strong players the edge over their opponents is not some blockbuster novelty, but a deep understanding of the pawn structures to which their openings lead.
It is an understanding that lasts into the middlegame and endgame and is transferrable between different openings with similar structures.
Sam Collins continued his investigation into the most common and important pawn structures in chess by looking at the “Capablanca Structure” (white pawns on c4 and d4 against black pawns on c6 and e6).
White has an undeniable space advantage but must demonstrate something against Black’s solid structure before the position simplifies.
The structure commonly arises from the most important openings including the Queen’s Gambit Declined, Semi-Slav, Rubinstein French and Caro-Kann, and a good understanding of the typical themes is essential.
About the Author:
Sam Collins is an International Master from Ireland with two GM norms.
He has represented his country at six Olympiads, winning an individual gold medal at Bled in 2002.
He is the author of several bestselling opening books.
As a coach, he has lectured national junior squads and taught the master class at the renowned Berkeley Chess School.
He has been the national champion of Ireland and Japan.
Minimum: Dual Core, 2 GB RAM, Windows 7 or 8.1, DirectX11, graphics card with 256 MB RAM, DVD-ROM drive, Windows Media Player 9, ChessBase 14/Fritz 16 or included Reader and internet access for program activation.
Recommended: PC Intel i5 (Quadcore), 4 GB RAM, Windows 10, DirectX11, graphics card with 512 MB RAM or more, 100% DirectX10-compatible sound card, Windows Media Player 11, DVD-ROM drive and internet access for program activation.