I decided to make a list of middlegame topics that I came across in the books on openings that perhaps
could be better, or at least elaborated further on. As a chess trainer, I was always constructing teaching
material on the middle game. This was initially intended for the top youth in the Netherlands, whom I
often took under my wing. Given the high level of many of these youth players, I had to look for striking,
well crystallized examples and corresponding processing. On the one hand these were tactical
assignments, strategic tasks, blind exercises; on the other, positions that they could play out among
themselves or in a simultaneous game against the trainer, after which the game fragments were analyzed
together. Later my activities shifted more and more to the growing group of club chess players who also
needed chess training. In the past forty odd years I have developed training materials on several levels
that may be of interest to club level players worldwide. That is why I decided to put these kinds of topics
into book form as well. Although some of these topics have also been the subject of books, I hope to add
value with a clear structure and a sophisticated selection of instructive examples.
The subject of this first book is the hedgehog system. This is for two reasons. When I was working on my
book ‘Understanding before Moving’ Volume 3- Part 2, the Taimanov, Kan & Richter Rauzer, I could
not avoid also cobbling together a separate chapter on the hedgehog System. Because of the length of the
chapter and in order not to lapse into lengthy explanations I limited myself to what was purely necessary.
However, because of that, certain elements were left out.
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