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Pirc Defence Powerbook 2019

For the first launch of the Pirc Powerbook 2019 a minimum rating of rating 2350 was set as the baseline. 46 000 games from Mega and correspondence chess crossed this threshold, to which were added roughly 160 000 from the engine room of playchess.com, making a total of 206 000 games. As well as the original Pirc (1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6) the Powerbook also covers the Modern Defence (1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 without c4 and an early ...Nf6) as well as some other playing systems with an early ...d6. The Pirc Defence is considered risky from Black’s point of view, because the centre is conceded to White. On the other hand, that creates for Black a chance, because just like, e.g., in the Grünfeld Defence he can attack the white centre. Thus the Pirc Defence is well suited to playing for a win with the black pieces.

The study of sub-variations with the help of the Powerbook is worth it. For example there is a little trick on offer in the variation with 1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.h4!? Bg7

and then 5.f3!?; the idea is that after the immediate  4.f3 Black usually delays the development of the Bf8 and continues with 4...c6 followed by ...b5. But the Powerboook also shows a counter-trick: after 5.f3 c6 6.Be3 the move 6...h5 turns out to be statistically interesting.

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