I love to play the King’s Gambit, even if the opponent doesn’t cooperate and responds with other moves than 1. … e5. How about that? Let’s take a look at the Harmonist Variation of the Pirc Defense:
1. e4 d6 2. f4!?
From a technical standpoint, the move 2. f4 is considered to be slightly less strong compared to the more common 2. d4, but it is by no means a mistake. In fact, it can lead to interesting and sharp positions, catching some opponents off guard. For instance, if the opponent plays the reckless response 2. … e5?!, they fall into a weakened version of the King’s Gambit Declined, which is advantageous for us.
There are several other variations that we might encounter after 2. f4 in the Pirc Defense. Let’s explore two sample games to gain a better understanding of potential lines and typical plans.
The second example came from a grandmaster game. It was played in the 10th Sigeman & Co tournament in Malmö, Sweden, June 2002. The game ended as a draw, but featured an interesting line in the opening.