Investigations of the Exchange Variation

Mar 26, 2008, 2:13 AM |

I am beginning to investigate some of the theory of the Exchange Variation of the Ruy Lopez. I figure if R. Fischer played it regularly, it can't be half bad.

The lines of interest for me result after 5. 0-0.

I would like to challenge all players with a rating above my own to challenge me to play this variation with me as White in either a open challange or in the upcoming Ruy Lopez thematic tournament.

From what I have gathered in my reading this opening allows Black certain advantages such as the Bishop pair while allowing White an advantage of better pawn structure and development. 

There are 3 primary lines that I find of interest. The first is that of the Alapin Gambit. This variation is characterized by the the Bg4 pin. It does commit Black early to giving up the bishop pair if White wants to force the matter. I am not too sure about the soundness of this gambit line for Black since it is Black who has the advantage of the Bishop pair and is willing to give up the additional advantage of the light squared Bishop.


This is the second position of interest and it also follows from the previously mentioned Alapin variation. There are several lines that develop from this tabiya. Most noteable in the game Ljubojevic - Spassky, Tilburg 1978.

According to the theory Black has no difficulties. I think this position would make for an interesting middlegame exploration.

More later as my studies allow me to post.