1.d4 Nf6 - Practical Repertoire against the Sidelines
This product includes all the videos from the workshop as well as the PGN file related to the training sessions. Overall, the material consists of 7.5 hours of video and a PGN database which includes 71 files!
You will find the following lectures:
✅ Practical Repertoire against the London System
✅ Complete Solution against Trompowsky
✅ How to Play against the Torre System
✅ Ambitious Repertoire against the Colle System
✅ Reliable Repertoire against Veresov and Jobava Systems
Now, we shall take a look at the different lectures.
Preview by GM Grigor Grigorov
Nowadays, when mainstream theory develops very fast, more and more players are starting to play less-explored sidelines. This tendency has developed to such an extent that some of these sidelines can no longer be considered as such. For example, the London System is almost a part of mainstream theory. Hence, when building our repertoire, we should take these sidelines very seriously.
This camp is designed to provide you with practical solutions against the London, Trompowsky, Torre, Colle, Veresov, and Jobava systems. Given the fact that these lines are very popular at any level, having practical and easy-to-learn solutions against them is extremely important.
For me, this work is particularly important because it completes my repertoire against 1.d4. So far, I have published the following courses against 1.d4:
- Expert Repertoire against the Catalan
- Understanding the Queen's Indian Defence
- Practical Nimzo-Indian Repertoire
Therefore, in this camp, I have suggested lines that are suitable for Nimzo/QID players. Additionally, all the suggested variations are quite practical and reliable. You can start playing them without the need to study tons of theory. Nevertheless, theory aficionados will find a bunch of interesting opening novelties.
I am sure that after studying the material, you will feel more than confident when facing all of these systems.
Practical Repertoire against the London System
In the recent years, the London System became tremendously popular. Once considered as a tricky weapon for amateur and club players, nowadays, the London System takes part in the repertoire of every top player. I am proud to share my highly practical and easy-to-learn system against the London. After the moves 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bf4, we play 3...c5 immediately attacking the centre. Even though I also consider the move 4.c3, White's most common choice by far is 4.e3. At this point, my suggestion is 4.cxd4 5.exd4 b6
The general idea behind this move is to exchange the light-squared bishops via a6. We will develop the bishop via b7 in two cases:
1) when White opts for a setup based on c2-c4
2) when White builds the construction Bb5 + a2-a4
Let's take a look at a typical line: 6.Nbd2 Be7 This is the scientific move order. Before playing ...Ba6, Black waits for White to move his light-squared bishop. This move order is very common in the games of Peter Leko who is a big expert in this line. 7.c3 0-0 8.Bd3 Ba6 9.Bxa6 Nxa6 10.0-0 Nc7 11.h3 d6
With some minor differences, you will get this position quite often in your games. The good thing is that you don't need any theoretical knowledge to play it. Black's plan includes the moves ...Ncd5, ...b6-b5, ...Qd7-c6 and ...Rfc8. Later on, he will try to deliver the advance ...b5-b4. On the other hand, it's very difficult to find constructive plans for White.
This is not the type of play London players like. With our system, we will definitely take them out of their comfort zone. After studying the model games, you will understand all the subtleties of this structure. I am sure that this line will become your lifetime weapon.
Below, you shall see one of the model games:
Complete Solution against Trompowsky
Trompowsky Opening arises after the moves 1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5
White is immediately targeting the black knight. In many positions, he is ready to take it in order to spoil Black's pawn structure. Trompowsky is a rich opening that can be played in many different ways. Therefore, it's part of the repertoire of both positional and aggressive players. Black has many ways to deal with the Trompowsky. To a huge extent, our reaction depends on the logic of our entire repertoire. Being a Nimzo-Indian player, I have played 2...e6 for a long period of time. Therefore, I was tempted to suggest this option here as well. Nevertheless, I think that the move 2...e6 is not the optimal solution since it gives White a lot of space and many possibilities. During the last couple of years, I realized that the most critical response to Trompowsky is the move 2...d5.
The main position of the suggested repertoire arises after 3.Bxf6 (all transpose to another position from the database) 3...gxf6
I consider this move Black's best try to imbalance the position and play for a win. As a matter of fact, even objectively speaking, 3...gxf6 is the best move. Black is planning to proceed with ...c7-c5 followed by ...Nc6 and ...e7-e5. In the long-term, he will be relying on the bishop pair and the strong pawn centre.
I hope that after carefully studying the material, you will be confident enough to face the Trompowsky in your games.
Here is one of the model games.
How to Play against the Torre System
The starting position of the Torre Attack arises after 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bg5
Torre Attack is a very serious opening that I like playing for both colours. The famous Modern Chess lecturer GM Ioannis Papaioannou dedicated two excellent camps to this opening. The system that I am going to suggest provides Black with very nice chances not only for equality, but also to play for a win. Just like in all the lines of our repertoire, here the understanding of the typical plans and ideas will be far more important than the knowledge of concrete theory.
In my opinion, the most precise move order is 3...h6 immediately clarifiying the position of the bishop. The main choice of the Torre players is 4.Bh4. I also explain how to handle the position arising after 4.Bxf6 Qxf6 5.e4 d6 As you will see in the games section, Black has excellent chances to play for a win in this position.)
The key position of our repertoire arises after 4...c5 5.e3 d5 6.Nbd2 Nbd7 7.c3 Bd6 8.Bd3 0-0 9.0-0 b6
Our way of developing the pieces prevents White from executing his main idea in the Torre Attack - Ne5 followed by f2-f4. White's only constructive idea is to play e3-e4. He can do it immediately or after Qe2 which is a bit more precise.
After the advance e3-e4, two pawn structures can arise:
1) IQP on d4
2) queenside majority for White versus kingside majority for Black
I explain these structures in a great detail in my comments on the model games. If White delays the advance e3-e4 for too long, Black can obtain a space advantage by either preparing the advance ...e6-e5 or playing ...Ne4 followed by ...f7-f5. In the commented model games, you will see how to exactly handle positions with a space advantage. All in all, the suggested system is very practical and does not require memorization of theoretical lines. In the arising positions, the player with better understanding will prevail.
The following model game is highly instructive.
Ambitious Repertoire against the Colle System
The Colle System occurs after 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.e3
It's important to point out that the genuine Colle includes the moves Bd3, b2-b3, and Bb2. Nevertheless, keep in mind that this lines are highly transpositional. At any moment, White can play c2-c4 and transpose to a different opening. My suggested move order is 3...b6 4.Bd3 Bb7 5.0-0 d5 6.b3 Bd6 7.Bb2 0-0 8.Nbd2 c5
Note that at any moment until now, White could have played c2-c4, getting a position from Queen's Indian Defence. The model games from my Queen's Indian camp that I provide get you covered in this case as well.
At this point, I examine three approaches:
The most typical Colle move is 10.Ne5 After supporting the knight with f2-f4, White is planning to go for a kingside attack. The drawback of this idea is that Black can make use of the weak e4-square.
Another type of position arises after 9.dxc5 Bxc5 10.c4
This setups was tried by a bunch of top players, including the World Champion Magnus Carlsen. It's obvious that the central tension will be released. The arising symmetrical position might become very subtle. Therefore, the undestanding becomes crucial. In the model games, I explain all the essential ideas.
Another important position arises after 9.c4 cxd4 10.exd4 Nc6
we will most likely get a position with hanging pawns. In the annotated model games, I pay a lot of attention to this structure. Besides explaining the basic ideas, I also show how modern engines handle this type of position.
Below, you can find one of the model games.
Reliable Repertoire against Veresov and Jobava Systems
The final lecture is dedicated to some important sidelines arising after 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5
At this point, by far the most important option that we should study is 3.Bf4
when we get to the so-called Jobava System. One of White's ideas is to spoil Black's coordination by means of Nb5. Additionally, due to his good central control, White can often consider taking active actions on the kingside.
In this lecture, I also examine 3.e4?! and 3.Bg5.
The central position of my analysis in this part of the database arises after 3...e6 4.Nb5 Bb4+ 5.c3 Ba5
This is the critical position for our repertoire. White has two different approaches of handling the position:
1) playing against the a5-bishop
2) go for a London type of play by means of 6.e3
If White opts for the first approach, the most critical move is 6.a4. In this line, I suggest a very important novelty in a critical position. Moves such as 6.b4 and 6.Qa4 are dubious and Black can immediately start fighting for an advantage. In this lecture, I also explain all the essential ideas that you should know in order to face the move 6.e3. This London type of play is quite strategic. Therefore, the understanding is far more important than the concrete theory.
You shall take a look at one of the model games.