Sicilian defence facts for kids

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The Sicilian defence, usually called just the Sicilian, is a chess opening, which starts with these moves:

  • 1. e4 c5

In competitive chess, it is by far the most frequently played reply to the King's Pawn opening (1.e4).

The open Sicilian
Start of chess board.
a8 black rook b8 black knight c8 black bishop d8 black queen e8 black king f8 black bishop h8 black rook
a7 black pawn b7 black pawn e7 black pawn f7 black pawn g7 black pawn h7 black pawn
d6 black pawn f6 black knight
d4 white knight e4 white pawn
c3 white knight
a2 white pawn b2 white pawn c2 white pawn f2 white pawn g2 white pawn h2 white pawn
a1 white rook c1 white bishop d1 white queen e1 white king f1 white bishop h1 white rook
End of chess board.
  • Open variations 1e4 c5 2Nf3 followed by 3d4. A typical line is
1.e4 c5
2.Nf3 d6
3.d4 cxd4
4.Nxd4 Nf6
5.Nc3

Now Black decides where to put his KB: on e7 or g7; his QN will probably go to c6.

The closed Sicilian
Start of chess board.
a8 black rook c8 black bishop d8 black queen e8 black king g8 black knight h8 black rook
a7 black pawn b7 black pawn e7 black pawn f7 black pawn g7 black bishop h7 black pawn
c6 black knight d6 black pawn g6 black pawn
b5 white bishop c5 black pawn
e4 white pawn f4 white pawn
c3 white knight d3 white pawn f3 white knight
a2 white pawn b2 white pawn c2 white pawn g2 white pawn h2 white pawn
a1 white rook c1 white bishop d1 white queen e1 white king h1 white rook
End of chess board.
  • Closed variations 1e4 c5 2Nc3 not followed by d4. A typical line is
1.e4 c5
2.Nc3 Nc6
3.f4 d6
4.Nf3 g6
5.Bb5 Bg7
6.d3

Instead of 3.f4, a slower game with 3.g3 followed by Bg2 and d3 could be chosen by White.

  • ECO code B20–B99. ECO is the Encyclopaedia of chess openings.

Sicilian defence Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.