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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Larsen Opening (Read 9862 times)
TheGame
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #22 - 07/26/06 at 14:45:53
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dont be sorry lol. I mean The Najdorf has 50 billion threads hell the dragon has its own section. Do we really need so many flank opening threads lol. no just kidding i play the bird,larsen,and owens.

but i dont think we need to ask if its really necessary to have so many X threads.
  
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Jonathan Tait
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #21 - 07/13/06 at 05:02:58
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Markovich wrote on 07/12/06 at 19:53:58:
Leaving aside any question of its objective merit, do we really need so many threads on the Nimzo-Larsen?


they were split throughout the forum
I've just bumped them all
sorry Smiley
  

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OstapBender
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #20 - 07/12/06 at 21:00:08
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Dinomike100 wrote on 07/12/06 at 20:41:40:
Finally, some threads on my favorite opening for white Cheesy.

Objectively, I think 1. e4 probably causes the most problems for black.  But 1. b3 gives me wayyy more time to study endgames and tactics.  I have switched almost fully over to 1. b3 and I am beating players <= 1600 something like 80% with it.  This opening also gives me lots of chances to practice endgame technique, especially in those games where black gets full equality in the middlegame.


I think this sounds like a good practical choice, even moreso if you typically play Nimzo-Indian/Queen's Indian with Black against 1.d4 since unprepared opponents will often allow you to turn 1.b3 into a colors-reversed, superior version of one of these openings.

I continue to stick with 1.e4 for everything except blitz (where I mix it up a bit), not so much for practical reasons (i.e., bringing home the point) but educational ones.  My feeling is that positions arising out of 1.e4 e5 are fundamentally important to learn.  Moreover, until I am adept at playing sharp, open, tactically rich positions (which, of course, aren't exclusive domain of 1.e4 openings), my playing strength will always be limited.  At some point in the most games you need to open up the position in order to convert an advantage to a victory.

Naturally, there are pros and cons to any choice.  Saving time on opening theory, and having more time to master endgames is definitely a pro.
  

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Dinomike100
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #19 - 07/12/06 at 20:41:40
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Finally, some threads on my favorite opening for white Cheesy.

Objectively, I think 1. e4 probably causes the most problems for black.  But 1. b3 gives me wayyy more time to study endgames and tactics.  I have switched almost fully over to 1. b3 and I am beating players <= 1600 something like 80% with it.  This opening also gives me lots of chances to practice endgame technique, especially in those games where black gets full equality in the middlegame.
  
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #18 - 07/12/06 at 19:53:58
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Leaving aside any question of its objective merit, do we really need so many threads on the Nimzo-Larsen?
  

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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #17 - 07/12/06 at 18:10:50
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tracke wrote on 11/04/04 at 04:11:55:
"- I would agree with Jacobs&Tait that you shouldn´t play 1.b3 to win your game in the opening but I´m not sure about white having no advantage. If you search in a big database, you´ll find 1.e4/1.d4 scoring ~57%, 1.c4/1.Nf3/1.g3 scoring ~56% (but only ~52% without transpositions to 1.d4-openings!) and 1.b3 scoring the same ~52%.


I suppose it depends what you mean by an advantage

theoretically/objectively White has no advantage at all

but practically... my score with 1 b3 is huge (about 90%), so based on my results I could claim White is close to winning after 1 b3

Smiley
  

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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #16 - 11/04/04 at 09:31:26
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Hello again,

nobody said that THE LARSEN is a bad opening. Chess giants can play nearly all systems without losing the game. All depends on what YOU expect from a game when you move the white pieces. In the case you are participating on international stage, each of your opponent will see (Chessbase) that you play 1.b3...and it will be very comfortable, to drink a coffee and invest 1 hour to prepare for the next game against you. Facing 2300-level players then will let you feel playing with Black instead with White. Statistics can show you that with 1.h3...or 1.a3 you can play successfull too...hehe!

Years ago I generally played 1.e3...2.a3... and I can tell you that if I had won the final game I would have become FIDE World AMATEUR Champion. This tourney had a 2100-level. Unfortunately I only reached DRAW in the final game(with Black)...

This will tell you that when YOU are strong enough, you can bring your magic in THE LARSEN so that you will have success & fun with it.

Greetings

SutterCane
  

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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #15 - 11/04/04 at 04:11:55
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"Why play the Nimzo-Larsen Attack?
Many opening monographs have enthusiastic titles of the form Winning with the ..., and invite the reader to ingest some marvellous system or other and rack up the points - either by encyclopaedic knowledge of main lines or the methodical application of simple strategies.
   So let us make it clear, first of all, that White has no advantage in the Nimzo-Larsen. The lines in ECO, for example, conclude mostly in '=' (equal) or 'oo' (unclear), with just a few '+=' (White stands slightly better) and even these '+=' seem optimistic. Nor is the Nimzo-Larsen a 'system' opening in which the first moves are played parrot-fashion regardless of the replies. There are system-like elements in some variations - the plan Bb5, Ne5, f2-f4 in the reversed Nimzo-Indian for instance - but more often White (and Black) can do just about anything. Anyone who likes to win their games in the opening should therefore look elsewhere.
   That´s not to say White can´t win, of course. In strategically rich positions, such as arise in the Nimzo-Larsen, the player who brings more to the game - in imagination, technique, spirit, or understanding - will generally have the better chances. 1 b3 also has the usual advantage associated with 'sideline' openings: that opponents are thrown onto their own resources at an early stage. Thus theoretical equality is turned into a practical advantage, whereas a theoretical plus against someone´s pet defence (or counterattack) can easily be outweighed by their superior understanding of the types of position that arise in that opening.
   And in aesthetic terms there is an appealing leftfield quality about b2-b3. Kingside fianchetti are so commonplace that some players boast of fianchettoing their king´s bishop in every game, White or Black. The queenside fianchetto is more exotic, and the bishop looks quaint gazing down the long diagonal into the heart of Black´s kingside. Subjective factors do count for something in chess, if only to induce a positive attitude at the board."
(from the Introduction of: Nimzo-Larsen Attack,
by Jacobs&Tait, Everyman London 2001)

* * *

Some comments:
-  From my experience most 2200-players (and even 2300-players) are not prepared to 1.b3 .  Of course my chessfriends started to prepare when I started to play 1.b3 .
-  1.b3 was played by such giants as Larsen, Fischer, Petrosian, Smsylov, Andersson, Ljubojevic in important games! The assessments in 'theory' of b3 has not changed very much in the last 30 years, what has changed is the attitude to openings: nowadays top10-players like to follow their computer-generated analysis until move 32. - You can find interesting games of Miles, Minasian, Blatny, young Kramnik (two nice wins in 1992!) , and most topically, games of hungarian GM Berkes or polish WGM Zielinska.
- I would agree with Jacobs&Tait that you shouldn´t play 1.b3 to win your game in the opening but I´m not sure about white having no advantage. If you search in a big database, you´ll find 1.e4/1.d4 scoring ~57%, 1.c4/1.Nf3/1.g3 scoring ~56% (but only ~52% without transpositions to 1.d4-openings!) and 1.b3 scoring the same ~52%. Followed by 1.Nc3/1.f4/1.b4 with less than 50% . (My own evaluation but I see no need for discussing these numbers exactly...)
- Of course it´s impossible to analyse a white advantage out of 1.b3 b6 . But I do not believe White to be in Zugzwang so I´ll take the white side of this position! You can compare it with 1.g3 g6 2.Bg2 Bg7 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.O-O O-O 5.d3 d6 6.e4 e5 or 1.e4 e5 2.Be2 Be7: in each case I would prefer White!

tracke
  
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SutterCane
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #14 - 11/02/04 at 13:22:29
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Hello Nexirae,

I wont play 1.f4... because f.e. 1... e5 will bring positions which I dont aim for. I play the f4 only to attack later the center. By the way: I like 1.b3... but there must be something wrong when you cant feel an advantage with white...

SutterCane
  

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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #13 - 11/02/04 at 12:21:58
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Just curious Sutter, if you don't like b3 for the stated reasons, what do you think about 1 f4 with a later b3? 

NeX iRae
  
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #12 - 11/02/04 at 06:20:30
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1.b3... and White is learning that he has no advantage!
I play the "e6...b6" system with Black and it is very interesting to fight the center. In addition I learned that 2200-players are well prepared facing 1.b3...I usually play 1.b3 b6 2.e3 e6 3.Bb2 Bb7 4.f4 f5 etc and Black is fine.

OK,...White can hope that Black is going a wrong path, I remember that I was hoping for 1.b3 e5 2.e3 d5 3.Bb2 Bd6 so that c4 & cd & f4 will bring "fire on board". My c4/cd/f4 novelty is better than what GM Bischof once played.

But usually White cannot sharpen the game & this is why I let THE LARSEN sleep well in my repertoire-book.

Have fun with it,

SutterCane
  

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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #11 - 09/23/04 at 14:49:24
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I did´t call 1...f5!? a mistake in terms of "white wins" but after some other first black moves as mentioned above the chances seem to be already equal though in practical play the white player has the advantage of being more familiar with typical structures.
An early push of the f-pawn is a somehow weakening move in every opening but has the advantage to sharpen the game. That´s why agressive players like it. After 1.b3 f5 2.Bb2 both diagonals a1-h8 and h5-e8 are obviously weak (at least for the next few moves as we´ve already seen in some variations). As far as I know every master commentary to these or related variations (there are few but more than none) suggests that white can keep an edge. This evaluation is strongly supported by statistics or computer programs though that may not be so important.

I like to think in ideas (sorry for that philosophy) but by calculating with moves I would suggest 1.b3 f5 2.Bb2 d6 3.e3! (3.g3 and 3.c4 are also good, 3.f4 has been played by masters and creative players might think about h3/g4-gambits) and now:
- 3...e5 4.d4 e4 (4...Nd7 was what I called misplaced )5.d5 += and the d4/f4-outposts for white knights will be more dangerous than e5 for black, see Minasian-Nevednichy, 1991, 1:0 (30) as a model game
- 3...Nd7 4.c4 N8f6 5.Nf3 g6 6.h4!? Everything is possible but again I like white

Okay, each time when white claims black to be "only close to equality" black calls himself "already close to equality" ?!  Wink

tracke
  
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #10 - 09/22/04 at 19:10:08
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1.b3 f5 and now tracke claims that White can reach a standard Dutch after 2.Bb2 d6 where Nbd7 is unusual. How is that?
Of course 3.d4 allows 3...Nf6.
and 3.Nf3 is met by 3...e5 and now 4.d4 e4 loses a tempo. I think Black should only allow e7-e5 to be met by d2-d4 when White has put a knight on f3.
White can try 3.c4 or 3.g3 but then Black can play 3...Nbd7 followed by ...Nf6. When White plays Nf3, ...e7-e5 follows and after d2-d4 Black has the option Nf6-e4 followed by Nd7-f6.
After something like 3.c4 Nbd7 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.d4 Black can use the knight on d7 to push e7-e5.
If White prevents this with an early d4-d5 Black can go for a Leningrad with g6, Bg7, 0-0 and Ne5.

This whole argument is similar to people (some GMs included) claiming that 1.Nf3 f5 is a mistake due to 2.b3. Then I play 2...d6 and calmly await White's next move. Ifnot 3.d4 then 3...e5 follows and if 3.d4 then 3...Nf6 with a normal Dutch (except that b2-b3 is not very dangerous for Black  Wink
  
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #9 - 09/22/04 at 00:36:39
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MNb:
Regarding 1.b3 f5 2.Bb2 Nf6 3.Bxf6 exf6 I still would claim a small but persistent advantage for white as his pawn structure is more flexible and black has serious weaknesses. Of course white has to care about the dark squares and the outcome of the game isn´t already clear.
As was said somewhere in the tromp/pseudotromp section (about 1.d4 d5 2.Bg5 Nf6 3.Bxf6 exf6) white should only exchange bishop v. knight if he can control d5. That means, if he can play c4 before black plays d5 so that white can either prevent d5 or exchange on d5 before black exchanges on c4. So back in our line I would play 4.c4 with Nc3/g3/Bg2 to follow. You can stop my fianchetto by 4....b6 but I would call this a further weakening of the white squares and my answer is 5.Nc3 Bb7 6.e3 developing with Nf3/Be2/0-0/Nh4orNd4/Bf3 or even Qh5+/Qh3/Be2-f3 . I like white positions very much!
There are some ideas of transposition, white can play 3.g3 or 3.c4 waiting for the next black move. In case of 3...g6 or 3...d6 there 4.Bxf6 would be even stronger as black has no b6-ideas. And after 3...e6 white may try Reti setups!?
Last but not least white can always transpose to a mainline dutch. Black is prepared for this of course but white seems to have a small edge in every variation!?
I really do not believe in 1...f5?! against larsen, 1...e5 and 1...d5 and 1...c5 and 1...Nf6 and 1...b6 are stronger!

b2b3:
You are right, I don´t play 5.f4 at all. Maybe it offers a very slight advantage for white (as all my sources tell) but I haven´t studied it yet. As I am no subscriber here (this may change?!) I don´t know Tonys analysis  Undecided
My choice is 5.c4 what is less advanturous and principal but also takes less risks. Sometimes I play 5.Nf3 or even  5.g3?! with a hippopotamus to follow  Grin
As you may already have noticed: I play 1.b3 to avoid theory and make my own one and not to play some tricky sidelines !!! It helps a lot to know some stuff about english, Reti, Bird, KI fianchetto, dutch, nimzo(reversed), queensindian (reversed), sicilian kan (reversed) etc but such knowledges are only backup lines and reference points for me.
I would be interested in your experiences with bird transpositions against 1...d5 . I am a frightened character, I generally play lines with c4 and only choose f4 if it promises something tangible
  
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Re: Larsen Opening
Reply #8 - 09/21/04 at 22:20:44
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tracke, i am glad to have found another supporter of b2b3.

However, i am not so sure about b3 e5.

Actually i m thinking about the position after 1.b3 e5 2.Bb2 Nc6 3. e3 d5 4.Bb5 Bd6 5.f4 Qh4 6.g3 Qe7 7.Nf3 f6, and now i m wondering, if White really can take the pawn. From my point of view, Tonys analysis is by far not complete. If you are interested in this position, lets share some thoughs, or dont you play 5.f4 at all?

b2b3

By the way, against d5 i prefer to play the Bird lines, and that gives white at least a more active position. I tried several times positions with Bd3 and Nc3, with very intersting games.
  
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