[Win the game with rare openings]
Nimzowitsch–Larsen – Opening from the perspective of white pieces
A06 1. B3 Nimzowitsch – Larsen opening from the perspective of white pieces. Larsen’s Opening (also called the Nimzo–Larsen Attack or Queen’s Fianchetto Opening) is a chess opening starting with the move:
- 1. b3
It is named after the Danish grandmaster Bent Larsen. Larsen was inspired by the example of the great Latvian–Danish player and theoretician Aron Nimzowitsch (1886–1935), who often played 1.Nf3 followed by 2.b3, which is sometimes called the Nimzowitsch–Larsen Attack. It is classified under the A01 code in the Encyclopaedia of Chess Openings.
The flank opening move 1.b3 prepares to fianchetto the queen’s bishop where it will help control the central squares in hypermodern fashion and put useful pressure on Black’s kingside. The b2-bishop is often a source of recurring irritation for Black, who should not treat it lightly.
Although Larsen was initially very successful with this opening, it suffered a setback in the 1970 USSR vs. Rest of the World match in Belgrade, where Larsen played it against reigning World Champion Boris Spassky and lost in 17 moves.[nb 1] Larsen was also decisively defeated when playing it against Rosendo Balinas, Jr. at Manila in 1975.
Notably, this opening received interest from Bobby Fischer the same year, who employed 1.b3 on at least five occasions, winning all five, including games with GM Filip, GM Mecking (Palma de Mallorca 1970 Interzonal), GM Tukmakov (Buenos Aires 1970), and GM Andersson (Siegen 1970). Today, Larsen’s Opening is occasionally used at the GM level, with top grandmaster Richárd Rapport employing it regularly and successfully. It was also employed at the 2018 Chess Olympiad by Baadur Jobava, in a game against Sulskis Sarunas, which ended in defeat for the former.
- 1. b3, d5, 2. Bb2, c5, 3. E3, Nc6, 4. Bb5;
- 1. b3, e5, 2. Bb2, d6;
- 1. b3, Nf6, 2. Bb2, e6, 3. E3, d5, 4. C4.