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  1. Forum
  2. General Chess Discussion
  3. countering the sicilian

Hi, I was wondering what are some lines that can counter the Sicilian defense. I know John Bartholomew on yt suggested for white that 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d5
thx

You mean 3 d3? That is a King's Indian Attack. White follows up with g3, Bg2, o-o.

Depending on your natural skill, your ability to memorize (including time you have set aside to learn lines), and what types of lines you like, I would recommend different lines. The safest (and quickest to learn with the white pieces) is playing the closed Sicilian (with 2.Nc3). It's a bit less popular than the open Sicilian (2.Nf3), but a little more popular than the Alapin (with 2.c3 Nc6 3.d4).

Black's ultimate goal when playing the Sicilian is to battle for central squares, robbing you of your majority, and putting their own there. In the long run, you can either battle back (running into main lines, which they may be prepared for), or forfeit the center to them and play from the flanks (which, depending on your playstyle, you might not be comfortable with).

I hope that all makes sense.

1. e4 c5
2. d4 and Black plays his very best to draw.

@FlammableLiquid #1
It depends on your playing style and what positions you are comfortable with.
If you like closed and semi-closed positions you might like the
1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 followed by g2g3 and Bg2 Closed Sicilian.
Former WC Boris Spassky played it many years ago with some nice wins. It is rather easy to learn, understand and remember.
http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chess.pl?playercomp=white&pid=21136&eco=B25&title=Spassky+playing+Sicilian,+Closed+(B25)+as+White+
Another former WC Smyslov also played it :
https://www.chess.com/article/view/vassily-smyslov-and-the-closed-sicilian
And among amateurs the Grand Prix Attack can be nice.
Also rather easy to learn, understand and remember.
Here's one annotated game :
http://www.kenilworthchessclub.org/games/java/2006/colias-gp.htm
From this collection :
http://www.kenilworthchessclub.org/articles/index.html

I like the open sicilian. I have had good results against the dragon because I've spent some time learning the theory. I never used to play f3 for example as it's not something you're taught to do as a beginner. The other versions of the sicilian I just try and follow basic opening principles as I don't know much about them yet. I think it's one of the most exciting openings to play against.

+1 to what @NeverBeenTimid said. The open Sicilian is probably the richest opening in chess. Sacrifices, positional play, attack/defense -- it's got it all. I recommend playing 3.d4 instead of playing some lazy closed variation.

I like the Smith–Morra gambit to play against sicillian. 1.) e4 c5 2.) d4 cxd4 3.) c3
Although i don't think it's as popular or accurate on a higher level.

But I think it's a fun and aggressive opening against the sicillian.

The (open) Sicilian is a cheap trick (Larsen) because the long-term advantages are on Black’s side. The short term on white‘s so everyone‘s got his share. :D

At least I can understand why white is reluctant to cooperate with 3.d4. I play 3.Bb5 myself because I like Sicilian structures as Black.


Sveshnikov thinks white should play 2 c3.