The Nimzo-Indian Defence 6

An solid aggressive and simple system against the Nimzo-Indian Defence
- The Rubinstein variation with 4. e3

Conclusions

4.e3, the start of the Rubinstein variation is a simple and effective move. It can be combined with the follow up ideas of Ne2, f3 and later advances either in the centre or on the kingside. It is a promising aggressive system to play against the Nimzo-indian defence and has been played with success by the top Grandmasters including Gary Kasparov, the current world champion.

 

FAQ's

These FAQ's will hopefully allow you to identify with the issues raised and encourage you to Email any questions or concerns you have about this variation.

1. Q 4.e3 seems like such a modest looking move. How can this possibly be effective? For example the bishop on c1 is locked in.

A Rubinstein the inventor of this variation was a very modest person himself, often shying away from the board when it was his opponent's move for fear of distracting them! Rubinstein was nevertheless one of the strongest players in his era showing that modesty does not necessarily imply ineffectiveness. Later the bishop on c1 can become a dangerous attacking resource when you play the plan of f3 followed by e4 for example.

2. Q They always seem to get a grip on the e4 square and then they doubled my pawns crippling my queenside play. I then find my c4 pawn being gobbled up when they play moves like Nc6-a5 followed by Ba6

A You have to be careful when playing against the Nimzo-indian that this does not happen. If it does, you have to treat the losing of the c pawn as a pawn sacrifice, and try to get attacking compensation on the other side of the board! Part of the Nimzo-indian's popularity is that it allows the higher level concepts of restraint, blockade and overprotection to be demonstrated quite easily. You have to be very careful about maintaining your counterplay.

3. Q What are the higher level concepts of restraint, blockade and overprotection?

A If you study the book My System in the recommended reading section you will get a good understanding of these and other concepts. You can also you the BCC on-line technical paper on doubled pawns as a starting point.

4. Q You say about the plan of f3 and e4, but they always seem to dissolve the centre with c5 and cxd4. What do I do then?

A As illustrated in one of the Kasparov games in this paper, you can still play attackingly with g4! Please refer to that game!

5. Q I don't like the idea of flinging my pawns forward on the Kingside. It seems quite scarey to weaken my own king.

A Chess is war. Don't be a rabbit/fish all your life. Play with aggression, and use those pawns as a battering ram to get at the opponents king, and to swing your rooks into the attack. Besides Kasparov plays like this, so who is to argue?

 

Further reading

Especially relevant to this paper are the following books :-
Rubinstein Variation : Nimzo-Indian Defense
Time Taylor / Paperback / Published 1984
Nimzo Indian 4 E3 Nimzowitsch Hubner Taimanov Variations
Craig Pritchett / Paperback / Published 1980
Other books to gain an understanding of the Nimzo-indian are:-
Easy Guide to the Nimzo-Indian
John Emms / Paperback / Published 1998
Mastering the Nimzo-Indian
Tony Kosten / Paperback / Published 1998
Nimzo-Indian Defence : Classical Variation (Cadogan Chess Books)
Ivan Sokolov / Paperback / Published 1995
The Nimzo-Indian Defence
Svetozar Glicoric / Paperback / Published 1993
Play the Nimzo-Indian Defense (Pergamon Chess Openings)
Svetozar Gligoric / Paperback / Published 1985

Back to top

Appendix 1 - 65 Examples of 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 c5 5.Nge2

You can use a Java Browser to see these games conveniently!

OR

Go to download area and download/view the pgn (Learning section)

Appendix 2 - 231 Examples of 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 0-0 5.Bd3 d5 6.cxd5 (immediately releasing some tension)

You can use a Java Browser to see these games conveniently!

OR

Go to download area and download/view the pgn (Learning section)

Appendix 3 - 122 examples of 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 b6 5.f3

You can use a Java Browser to see these games conveniently!

OR

Go to download area and download/view the pgn (Learning section)