Nimzo-Indian Classical Variation: Vitolins-Adorjan Gambit

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The Nimzo-Indian Defense is a popular chess opening that follows the moves: 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4. This hypermodern opening was developed by Aron Nimzowitsch, who introduced it to master-level chess in the early 20th century.

Black usually gives up his bishop pair by playing Bxc3, allowing White to have doubled c-pawns. Because of this static weakness of White, Black gains play, especially on the light squares e4 and d3. And when White plays 4.Qc2, we get the Classical variation or the Capablanca variation.

In this video lesson, the RCA guest coach IM Asaf Givon will talk about the Vitolins-Adorjan Gambit in this Classical variation. It happens after the following moves: 4…0-0 5.a3 Bxc3 6.Qxc3 b5. Black sacrifices the b-pawn (in a style similar to that of the Benko gambit) in order to gain initiative. The move b5 is not a rare or dubious move. It has been played by top grandmasters in over hundreds of games.

Here Black is already ahead in development as he finished castling. However, White has only developed his queen and is yet to develop his kingside forces. Watch the video lesson as IM Asaf Givon analyses the common ideas for Black in this gambit and some interesting variations.

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