I recently had a blitz game where I played a new for me opening – Queen’s Indian defense. I got the position with hanging pawns – I didn’t have them for don’t remember how long time. About 30 years ago back in USSR I read a very good book about the preparation for the 1st category (class A formally, though the same stuff in USA is submitted under “Master Preparation” title – see below, so you can judge how strong that preparation was, even then I thought it was closer to candidate master), and there was a chapter about hanging pawns. Whatever I remembered came in handy, here is the game:


Interesting that after the game I found an article on the Web:


and my game illustrates pretty well some of the principles from it:

“There are four main advantages of hanging pawns:

“First, they help gain a space advantage by controlling central squares. This control especially diminishes the value of rival knights”.

“Second, hanging pawns create dynamic opportunities for a central pawn advance (when the hanging pawns are on files c and d, typically it is the d pawn that will be advanced). Such an advance can create a dangerous passed pawn and squeeze additional space” – 26… d4.  “In addition, such an advance can open diagonals for bishops in ambush” – a8-h1, a6-f1 for the bishop on b7.

“Third, hanging pawns create outposts for knights and rooks for attack” – Ne4

“Fourth, the adjacent half-open files supply quick transportation for the rooks on both flanks”.