Der Englische Igel

The English Hedgehog

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On this DVD, Slovakian grandmaster Lubomir Ftacnik presents the hedgehog structure with its phenomenal potential for active counterplay by Black. The appeal of elastic piece development around dynamic pawns is so great that the concept has been applied to many openings. The author has deliberately limited his overview to the English hedgehog, with an emphasis on the challenges after the centralization of the white queen 1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3 e6 4.g3 b6 5.Bg2 Bb7 6.0-0 Be7 7.d4 cxd4 8.Qxd4. Black's position will have to withstand several tests, because the attacker enjoys a slight development advantage and greater freedom of movement for his pieces. Once the defender has managed to fend off these direct attempts at attack, his prospects are usually quite promising. This explains the abundance of quite inventive ideas that the white players have repeatedly come up with over the last two decades. The increasing popularity of the alternative plan of 7.Re1 shows that Black survives the main lines safely. Any player who is able to withstand some pressure in the English Hedgehog will be richly rewarded with flexible positions full of life and counter-opportunities for Black. Video time: 4 hours