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Sicilian, Taimanov (B45)
1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nc6 5 Nc3

Number of games in database: 3491
Years covered: 1849 to 2019
Overall record:
   White wins 40.7%
   Black wins 25.5%
   Draws 33.8%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Michael Adams  15 games
Alexey Shirov  14 games
Varlam Vepkhvishvili  12 games
Blackburne  19 games
Jacques Mieses  18 games
Pavel Tregubov  17 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
Fischer vs Spassky, 1992
Kramnik vs Topalov, 2003
O Bernstein vs J Mieses, 1904
Shirov vs Judit Polgar, 1994
Topalov vs Kasparov, 1995
Spassky vs Rodgaisky, 1948
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 page 1 of 140; games 1-25 of 3,491  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Bird vs G W Medley 1-0631849Ries' Divan TournamentB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
2. H Kennedy vs Szen ½-½571851LondonB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
3. H Kennedy vs Wyvill 0-1521851LondonB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
4. Paulsen vs J G Campbell  0-1161861Blindfold simul, 10bB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
5. Anderssen vs E Schallopp 0-1351864BerlinB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
6. G Neumann vs Zukertort 0-1361864BreslauB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
7. Paulsen vs C Witthaus  1-0481865UnknownB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
8. Steinitz vs V Green 1-0191866LondonB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
9. P Phillips vs W J Fullarton ½-½391868Adelaide Chess Club v Melbourne Chess Club Telegraph MatchB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
10. Steinitz vs Adolf Stern 1-0261870Baden-BadenB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
11. L S Phillips vs W Crane ½-½361871NSW v VIC Telegraphic MatchB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
12. M Judd vs H Hosmer  0-17218712nd American Chess CongressB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
13. Steinitz vs J Heral 1-0481873ViennaB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
14. Chigorin vs A Ascharin 1-0291875St. PetersburgB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
15. Chigorin vs Alapin 1-0291875St PetersburgB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
16. C M Fisher vs L Goldsmith 1-0221875Match-Game 11B45 Sicilian, Taimanov
17. Mackenzie vs E Alberoni 1-0161876Cafe InternationalB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
18. C Richardson vs A W Ensor 0-1291876Cafe InternationalB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
19. Zukertort vs F G Janssens  1-0411876LondonB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
20. Anderssen vs Paulsen 1-0401876Leipzig mB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
21. H Davidson vs M Judd 1-05118764th American Chess CongressB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
22. Anderssen vs Paulsen 0-1391877LeipzigB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
23. A Khardin vs Chigorin 1-0251878St. PetersburgB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
24. Chigorin vs Schiffers 0-1251878Chigorin - Schiffers First MatchB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
25. Chigorin vs Schiffers 0-1281878Chigorin - Schiffers First MatchB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
 page 1 of 140; games 1-25 of 3,491  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
May-23-03  maa: Can someone talk me about this sicilian because its what i do but i play it bad. I need help
May-24-03  refutor: i play it badly too...are you the same as me and get in trouble after 5. ... Bb4 or something along those lines? my newest "fix" is 5. Nb5
Jun-05-03  matthew2582: The Taimanov is an extremely sound and solid variation which gives Black excellent chances and avoids, of course, the new favourite line of anti-sicilians - namely, Bb5.

5..Bb4 is a fairly rare line in the Taimanov and one reason is refutor's 6.Nb5. Black has some potentially unpleasant problems with the weak sicilian d6 pawn and the c7 square.

Equally with White's Nd6+ a possibility, Black is faced either with giving up the dark square B or playing Ke7/Kf8.

Bb4 is not really in the spirit of the Taimanov and results in considerably inferior positions.

A very normal and correct setup for Black here is to get in the important a6 sicilian pawn and the Q on its usual sicilian sqaure of c7.

Here would be a very typical line :

1.e2-e4 c7-c5
2.Ng1-f3 e7-e6
3.d2-d4 c5xd4
4.Nf3xd4 Nb8-c6
5.Nb1-c3 a7-a6
6.Bc1-e3 Qd8-c7
7.Bf1-e2 Ng8-f6
8.0-0 Bf8-e7

White is a little better due to development lead and space but Black is fine and has potential for a critical d5 break and the normal b7-b5 break.

This setup is fine also against 0-0-0.

Another way to go is to transpose the line via the Kan variation.

1.e2-e4 c7-c5
2.Ng1-f3 e7-e6
3.d2-d4 c5xd4
4.Nf3xd4 a7-a6

This is one of Black's most successful sicilian variations and is enormously flexible.

For example - Black can transpose into the line shown above or can follow a6 with b7-b5 Bb7 ideas or can follow with Bc5 after White's Nxd4 driving the Knight to b3 and placing the dark B on a7 as Kasparov did in his match with Deep Junior.

Jul-16-03  snap: What's the best introductory reference for the Taimonov Sic? I know of the Burgess book, but, as a beginner, I know too it's too big a bite for me. By "introductory" I mean containing basic ideas underpinning the opening moves, and typical middlegames and endgames....--
Jul-30-03  AdrianP: It's a bit ironic that Taimanov is listed by the database as a practitioner of the Sicilian (B44) (...i.e. these moves, but not including 5 Nc3) but not as a practitioner of his eponymous system!
Dec-01-03  Kenkaku: <AdrianP> He is listed as having played 110 games in the B46 Sicilian, Taimanov.
Feb-11-04  Kenkaku: Perhaps this line should've been called the Sicilian, Blackburne variation simply because he was the first major proponent of the system. He played it with generally good results from the 1880s onward, though one must admit not nearly to the level that Taimanov played it.
Feb-11-04  PinkPanther: <Kenkaku>
The Russians claim alot of openings to be theirs, when in fact, they're not. The Shveshinkov wasn't invented by Shveshnikov either.
Feb-11-04  Kenkaku: <PinkPanther> Such is the case of many openings. The inventor is rarely the one it is named after, but it IS usually named after the one who popularizes it.
Feb-11-04  PinkPanther: <Kenkaku>
Then I guess we should start calling The Sveshnikov Sicilian the "Leko-Kramnik Sicilian" then shouldn't we, lol?
Feb-11-04  Kenkaku: Sveshnikov did not invent it but he did promote it. Just as Blackburne did not invent the Taimanov. I was alluding to cases like the Sveshnikov in suggesting that this variation could have been named after Blackburne. If you want cases of openings being named after those who popularized them, look no further than the Najdorf, Fischer-Sozin, Semi-Slav Botvinnik System, etc.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: Please evaluate this game for improvements on both sides: 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cd 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nc3 Bc5 6. Ndb5 d6 7. Qg4 g6 8. Bg5 Qb6 9. 0-0-0 Bxf2 10. Nxd6+ Kf8 11. Nc4 Qc7 12. Qf3 Bd4 13. Bf4 e5 14. Nd5 Qd8 15. Qa3+ Nge7 16. Bh6+ Kg8 17. Nf6++. Thank you.
Mar-27-04  boordgamer: Please write down your annotation correctly and I will.
Jun-16-04  Dimitar Panayotov: I was thinking actually the refutor of 5.Bb4 is:

6.Nxc6 bc
7.Qd4 Bxc3
8.Qxc3 Nf6

Jan-26-05  Bogdanel: Why doesn't the four knights sicilian have en own eco code? i see a lot of sicilian for knights games listed under "b45-sicilian taimanov " and also under the eco b40.Is there someone who knows?
Jun-24-05  sitzkrieg: For all the people looking for good books and stuff (@Snap, Maa ); this site gives excellent info on the main ideas in the taimanov inluding some important lines and interesting games:

Helped me a lot when i started playing it.

Mar-02-07  drukenknight: My best Sicilian ever. Hey I beat G Kasparov in this! That's right I was invited to Gary's house to play chess, he wasnt there but his dog was. The dog studied under Gary and goes by the name of Grover Kasparov so it is the same as playing G Kasparov. Here it is...

1. e4 c5
2. Nf3 e6
3. d4 cxd4
4. Nxd4 Nc6
5. Nc3 Bc5
6. Be3 (11 games in the java data base got this far, this site has less, no one famous)

Qa5 (the novelty and also a blunder, this a good one to study for speed players to see if they can spot it)

7. Nxc6 bxc6
8. Bd2 Qb6
9. Qe2 Qd8
10. f4 a5
11. O-O-O a4
12. a3 h5 (Ba6 better)
13. e5 Ne7
14. Ne4 Bb6
15. Nd6+ Kf8
16. Bb4 c5
17. Bc3 Nd5
18. Qf3 Rb8
19. Rxd5 exd5
20. Qxd5 Qe7
21. Bc4 h4
22. Nxf7 Bb7
23. Qd3! Rh5
24. Qg6 Ba6
25. Bxa6 Qxf7
26 Qd6+ and wins

or if 21...f6
22. exf6 gxf6
23. Re1 Qh7
24. Re8+ Kg7
25. Re7+ Kg6
26. Qf5+ Kh6
27. Rxh7+ Rxh7
28. Qxf6#

nice huh?

Jun-18-07  dabearsrock1010: I used this in my last round Saturday and it went isnt as crazy as some sicilians but still has good tactical chances so I feel more comfortable playing it then lets say a dragon
Nov-08-07  faithnest: Sorry, but i didnt like the game very much. Black made too many blunders.
Aug-15-08  Jason Frost: The 2 main lines are

1. e4 c5
2. Nf3 e6
3. d4 cxd4
4. Nxd4 Nf6(or Nc6)
5. Nb5 Bb4
6. a3 Bxc3 with aproximate eqality

1. e4 c5
2. Nf3 e6
3. d4 cxd4
4. Nxd4 Nf6
5. Nc3 Nc6
6. Nxc6 bxc6 with the slimest of edges to white
here the game could contenue
7. e5 Nd5
8. Ne4 Qc7
9. f4 Qb6
10. c4 Bb4+
11. Ke2 Ba6
12. Kf3 f5


Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Opening of the Day

Sicilian, Taimanov
1.e4 c5 2.♘f3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.♘xd4 ♘c6 5. ♘c3

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: In this opening, after 5...Bb4, 6.Ndb5 is the top choice.

6.Ndb5, or simply 6.Nb5, since only one knight can legally move there?

Opening Explorer

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