Chess Opening Theory/1. e4/1...e5/2. Nf3/2...Nc6/3. Bb5/3...a6/4. Ba4/4...Nf6/5. O-O/5...Be7/6. Re1/6...b5/7. Bb3/7...O-O

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< Chess Opening Theory‎ | 1. e4‎ | 1...e5‎ | 2. Nf3‎ | 2...Nc6‎ | 3. Bb5‎ | 3...a6‎ | 4. Ba4‎ | 4...Nf6‎ | 5. O-O‎ | 5...Be7‎ | 6. Re1‎ | 6...b5‎ | 7. Bb3
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Closed Ruy Lopez
a b c d e f g h
8{{{square}}} black rook{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black bishop{{{square}}} black queen{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black rook{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king8
7{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black bishop{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black pawn7
6{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black knight{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black knight{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king6
5{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black pawn{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king5
4{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king4
3{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} white bishop{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} white knight{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} black king3
2{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} white pawn{{{square}}} white pawn2
1{{{square}}} white rook{{{square}}} white knight{{{square}}} white bishop{{{square}}} white queen{{{square}}} white rook{{{square}}} black king{{{square}}} white king{{{square}}} black king1
a b c d e f g h

Closed Ruy Lopez, 7...O-O[edit]

White's natural move in this position is

  • 8.c3, continuing with the plan of eventually playing d4. This invites the Marshall Gambit ...d5 in response, which White may or may not be happy about.

Or White can try to do without the move c3, taking advantage of the fact that Black's c6-knight can't currently come to a5 and swap the bishop off because the e5-pawn would fall.

With the move

  • 8. h3, White eyes a transposition back to the main line with 8...d6 9.c3, while reserving the option of reacting to ...d5 by quickly developing the b1-knight to c3, hence the name Ambidextrous Variation.
  • 8. a4 is a radical change of course and was Gary Kasparov's choice. White takes advantage of the fact that Black a) hasn't forced the move c3, and b) can't play ...c6 because the knight is needed on c6 to defend e5, and hatches a plan of ganging up on the adventurous Black b-pawn with a4 and Nc3, while incidentally giving the bishop a retreat square on a2.