Offside Pawn Majority:
Part of the Advanced Beginner's Chess Guide (Section 1) and the
Chess Strategies Guide (Section 2: Studying the Pawns)

Offside Pawn Majority
Point Count Chess: [+]


Point Count Chess, Examples
Offside Pawn Majority

Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 152 - Page 215-218 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #1
The Minority Attack (1 of 2)

(p215-218) Diagram NO.152
Flohr v. Euwe, 1932
The Minority Attack
(1 of 2)


White gains a Pawn Minority on the Queenside (3-v-4), and so launches a Queenside Minority Attack.

The attack gave Black a Weak Pawn Structure (Isolated Pawns on the Queenside).

This example of the Minority Attack was first featured in H&M-S's analysis of the Half-open File.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 153 - Page 218 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #1
The Minority Attack (2 of 2)

(p218) Diagram NO.153
Bogoljubov v. Capablanca, 1924
The Minority Attack
(2 of 2)


Black gains a Pawn Minority on the Queenside (3-v-4), and, like White did in No.152, Black launches a Queenside Minority Attack.

The attack gave White a Weak Pawn Structure (a Backward b-Pawn).

This example of the Minority Attack also first featured in H&M-S's analysis of the Half-open File.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 182 - Page 258-259 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #2
The Offside Majority (1 of 2)

(p258-259) Diagram NO.182
Example Sequence
The Offside Majority
(1 of 2)


White's Queenside Pawns are the Offside Majority, as they're on the opposite side of the board from the two adverse Kings.

The plan for White is to force a Passed Pawn on the Queenside, which becomes a Decoy that threatens to gain Promotion. Black's King will be compelled to comes across to the Queenside, to deny White's Passed Pawn its chance of Promotion, but this will leave White's King free to remove Black's Kingside Pawns, and Promote his g-Pawn, for a game-winning advantage.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 183 - Page 259-260 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #2
The Offside Majority (2 of 2)

(p259-260) Diagram NO.183
Eliskases v. Flohr, 1937
The Offside Majority
(2 of 2)


Black's Queenside Pawns are the Offside Majority, as they're on the opposite side of the board from the two adverse Kings.

This example is a little more detailed, as Black must take care of necessary exchanges, in order to see that his Offside Pawn Majority can successfully force through a Passed Pawn.

Like No.182, the Queenside Passed Pawn is but a "Decoy", designed to pull the enemy King away from the defence of his Kingside Pawns, so that Black can force through a second Passed Pawn, for a game-winning advantage.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 184A to 184B - Page 261-262 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #3
The Four-to-Three Wing

(p261-262) Diagram NO.184A to NO.184B
Kostic v. Gruenfeld, 1922
The Four-to-Three Wing

H&M-S say that it's usually more difficult to break down the minority force of Pawns, when they number three or more (e.g. 4-v-3, 5-v-4).

A Majority Wing has a better chance of creating a Passed Pawn, when the ratio is 3-v-2 or 2-v-1.

In this example, White actually has a "Five-to-Four" Wing, stretching from his d5-Pawn on the Queenside, to the h2-Pawn on the Kingside. Black's Offside Pawn Majority plays a prominent role in White's "Five-to-Four" Wing being unsuccessful.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 185A to 185B - Page 262-263 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #4
Gaining the Offside Majority

(p262-263) Diagram NO.185A to NO.185B
Chajes v. Tarrasch, 1923
Gaining the Offside Majority

Black gets the honor of gaining the Offside Majority, on the Queenside, which comes about from a King Pawn Opening (1.e2-e4).

Also includes links to four other games that feature either White or Black gaining the Offside Majority. All occur on the Queenside, and come about from Queen Pawn Openings (1.d2-d4).
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 186 - Page 264-265 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #5
Offside Majority v. Minority Attack
(1 of 2)

(p264-265) Diagram NO.186
Capablanca v. Villegas, 1914
Offside Majority v. Minority Attack (1 of 2)

This example shows White succeeding with the Offside Pawn Majority, on the Queenside, versus Black's Minority Attack.

The side with the Offside Pawn Majority, must keep it mobile; keep his c-Pawn ahead of its fellow Pawns in the Majority; and ensure the c-Pawn can reach its fourth rank unopposed, if it is to be successful (as it is, left).

If the Offside Pawn Majority can be kept immobilized, the opponent can triumph with their Minority Attack, and the Half-open c-file that accompanies it.
Point Count Chess - IE - Diagram 187 - Page 265-266 PCC, Pawn Majorities. Example #5
Offside Majority v. Minority Attack
(2 of 2)

(p265-266) Diagram NO.187
Marshall v. Capablanca, 1909
Offside Majority v. Minority Attack (2 of 2)

This example shows Black succeeding with the Offside Pawn Majority, on the Queenside, versus White's Minority Attack.

Like No.186, the guiding advice remains the same: the Offside Pawn Majority must be kept "mobile," if it is to succeed; the Minority Attack requires the Offside Pawn Majority to become "immobilized," if it is to succeed.

H&M-S appear to hint at an alternative plan of action (advance through the Center), if the opposition's Offside Pawn Majority cannot be immobilized.

Further Reading

Point Count Chess (Horowitz & Mott-Smith, 1960)
  • The Minority Attack, (p215)
  • The Offside Majority, (p258)
  • The Four-to-Three Wing, (p260)
  • Gaining the Offside Majority, (p262)
  • Offside Majority v. Minority Attack, (p263)


Return to the Index of Advantages
Return to the Chess Strategies Guide,
Studying the Pawns (Pawn Majorities)
← Back to the Chess Glossary (Offside Pawn Majority)
Chess Search 2.0
2700chess.com for more details and full list 2700chess.com for more details and full list
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Basic Chess Rules, Thumbnail
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Beginner's Chess Guide, Thumbnail
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Chess Openings Guide, Thumbnail
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Chess Strategies Guide, Thumbnail
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Chess Tactic Guide, Thumbnail
Chess-Game-Strategies.com, Chess Endgame Guide, Thumbnail