The Ruy Lopez, also known as the Spanish Opening, is one of the oldest and most popular chess openings ever. The opening is named after a Spanish priest from the 16th century, Ruy López de Segura.
It is one of the most heavily analyzed openings in today’s game and continues to enjoy incredible popularity at all levels (elite players such as Anand, Caruana, and Carlsen frequently play the Ruy Lopez).
Moreover, the Ruy Lopez is considered essential to the development of any promising player. Its strategic nature, typical tactics plus the fact it leads to both open and closed positions make it perfect for deepening general chess understanding.
The Ruy Lopez begins with the following moves: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 (see the diagram on the left).
There are many variations such as the Exchange Variation or the 6.d3-Spanish which can occur from the Ruy Lopez. Yet, the absolute mainlines of the opening start after 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 (see the diagram on the right).
Thousands of games between the world’s strongest players have reached this position. Black has many different moves at his disposal, all leading to well-known variations.
- 9…Bb7: This move introduces the Zaitsev Variation
- 9…Na5: This move introduces the Chigorin Variation
- 9…Nb8: This move introduces the Breyer Variation
- 9…Nd7: This move introduces the Karpov Variation
Ruy Lopez: Latest Trend In The Zaitsev Variation
In this iChess Club exclusive video, the first part of a series of videos on the aforementioned tabiya from the Ruy Lopez, GM Leonid Kritz, a renowned expert on this opening, dives deep into the waters of the Zaitsev Variation after 9…Bb7.
This position has been debated thousands of times between players of all levels – from the world’s best Super-GMs to countless club players.
GM Leonid Kritz takes a close look at this complicated variation and analyzes the latest theory for Black and White. If you regularly face the Zaitsev Variation with White or play this line with Black and want to stay up-to-date, this video is a must-watch.
Watch the Full Video with iChess.club
Want to watch the full video? Check out the iChess Club, a premium membership for our top fans and customers that gives you tons of exclusive benefits such as:
- 2-3 exclusive new premium videos a week by the world’s top Grandmasters and chess educators (such as this one!)
- 40% off all items in our shop, anytime
- Free shipping for those of you who like physical DVDs
- 5% additional discount for products already on sale
- Sale extender allowing you to get an item at the sale price up to 30 days after a sale has ended!
- An additional $19.97 in store credit each month you renew!
- Access to live private webinars
- A 30+ minute preview of almost every product in our shop
All this for only $19.97 a month! Click here to sign up for the iChess Club. It’s Your Move.
Other interesting iChess.club articles for you:
- Nimzo Indian: A Surprising Idea For Black Against The Capablanca Variation (4.Qc2) – GM Eugene Perelshteyn
- Sicilian Dragon: Latest Trends In The Yugoslav Attack With 9.0-0-0 – GM Romain Edouard (iChess.club)
- Caro Kann: Theoretical Developments In The Classical Variation – GM Alex Lenderman (iChess.club)