One can’t ignore the d5 square in almost any Sicilian line, both from a tactical and positional point of view. In this article we will see the importance of d5 square from White’s point of view.
Tactical aspects: White sacrifices a piece on d5 in order to open the e-file and launch a decisive attack against Black’s king. Sometimes White’s pieces also find c6 as an outpost after exd5. If Black declines the sacrifice, it is really difficult to tolerate that piece on d5.
Here is a brief commentary by Mato on the game played by Mikhail tal vs Mikhail Mukhin in 1972 on the same theme.
Positional aspects: If White gets control over d5 he tries to establish a piece there, and possibly a knight. This can lead to positions where a knight on d5 is far superior to Black’s dark square bishop. Here is a nice game explained by Kingcrusher:
In my next article we will examine the same d5 square from Black’s point of view.