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Mastering Queen Play in the Middlegame
GM Danny Gormally

06 July 2018

How we use our queen is often taken for granted because it’s such a powerful piece. In this article I want to look at games where the queen played a crucial role.

The following game is a real classic.

White’s defence seems to be overloaded almost to breaking point so the question is how to break through? The attacking genius Leonid Stein found a very elegant solution:

Now you know the theme, finding the right idea in the following position should be a matter of course:

An extremely beautiful final touch, but really the queen did all the “heavy work”.

Successful use of the queen in the middlegame is often about using your imagination, and also asking yourself “How can my queen be best deployed?” There comes a point in the game where you need to decide what to do with the queen. It’s often best in the centre, but of course that option isn’t always available to us. Never mind, because the queen can be a powerful attacking force from the side as well…

Queen in the Centre

Where the queen really comes into it’s own is the centre of the board of course, where it can command it’s power over the entire landscape. I’ve played a lot of blitz chess with Charlie Storey over the years, and one of the things he said he picked up from our sessions was how often I placed my queen in the middle of the board when I got the chance; before he had underestimated what an important factor this was.

About the Author
GM Danny Gormally

Danny Gormally is a talented English Grandmaster. He lives in the bustling market town of Alnwick, somewhere near Scotland.

Danny’s first DVD for Ginger GM, Improve Your Practical Play was released in September 2013.