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East Indian Defence

The East Indian Defence is a chess opening characterised by the moves:

1. d4 Nf6
2. Nf3 g6[1]

This opening has a close kinship to the more-common King's Indian Defence and is often considered a variant thereof. The difference is that White has not yet played c4, and therefore retains some options.

If White plays an early c4, the opening will transpose into a King's Indian. It is also possible for White to support an early e4 advance, transposing into the Pirc Defence. Unless transposition is reached, there are four popular, independent continuations:

The Encyclopaedia of Chess Openings classifies the East Indian Defence under A49 for the Przepiórka variation and A48 for the others.

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.g3 is the King's Indian, Fianchetto without c4. This can also be reached by 1.Nf3 lines. Black almost always plays 3...Bg7. White can play 4.c4 or 4.Bg2.

After 4.Bg2, Black can play ...0-0, ...d5, or ...d6. 4...d5 gives the Neo-Grunfeld Defence with 5.c4 or 5.0-0 0-0 6.c4. 4...d6 is the same as 4...0-0 with 5.c4 0-0 or 5.0-0 0-0.

After 4...0-0, White can play 5.c4 or 5.0-0.

With move 5.0-0, Black can play ...d6 or ...d5. 5...d5 gives the Neo-Grunfeld Defence after 6.c4.

With move 5...d6, White will usually play 6.c4 for the Fianchetto Variation, but other moves are possible.

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