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Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation (B31)
1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 g6

Number of games in database: 3630
Years covered: 1857 to 2017
Overall record:
   White wins 43.1%
   Black wins 23.2%
   Draws 33.7%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Peter Svidler  30 games
Evgeni Vasiukov  27 games
Jan Timman  27 games
Rauf Mamedov  32 games
Vasilios Kotronias  25 games
Vladimir Kramnik  23 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
Fischer vs Spassky, 1992
Judit Polgar vs P Chilingirova, 1988
Rossolimo vs I Romanenko, 1948
Ponomariov vs Kramnik, 2003
Caruana vs Carlsen, 2015
M Pavlovic vs Carlsen, 2004
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 page 1 of 146; games 1-25 of 3,630  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Cochrane vs Somacarana 0-140 1857 CalcuttaB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
2. Alapin vs Von Gottschall 1-056 1887 FrankfurtB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
3. W Henneberger vs Alekhine  0-152 1934 ZurichB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
4. M Schubert vs D May  0-131 1936 UJCS-14.KongressB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
5. F H Stoppel vs H Gordon  ½-½24 1946 47th US OpenB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
6. Tartakower vs Boleslavsky 0-169 1946 GroningenB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
7. Rossolimo vs I Romanenko 1-017 1948 SalzburgB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
8. Tartakower vs Stoltz  ½-½19 1948 Saltsjöbaden InterzonalB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
9. Rossolimo vs B H Wood  ½-½38 1949 Hastings 1948/49B31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
10. Rossolimo vs O'Kelly 1-024 1949 OldenburgB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
11. Rossolimo vs M Castillo  1-066 1950 Mar del PlataB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
12. K Darga vs Lothar Musmann  1-020 1951 German Championship U20B31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
13. B Hoenlinger vs E R Lundin  0-163 1951 Schlechter memB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
14. Teschner vs Stahlberg  0-172 1952 Helsinki ol (Men)B31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
15. Szabo vs Boleslavsky  1-074 1953 BucharestB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
16. E Haag vs A Koranyi  ½-½25 1953 Budapest, HungaryB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
17. Larsen vs H Heikkila  1-040 1953 Wch U20 qual-BB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
18. Szabo vs Averbakh  ½-½27 1953 Zurich CandidatesB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
19. Kholmov vs V Ciocaltea  1-031 1954 BucharestB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
20. I Bilek vs Szily 1-029 1954 HUN-ch 10thB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
21. Boleslavsky vs Taimanov  0-137 1955 USSRB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
22. R Jacobs vs K Burger  0-123 1955 56th US OpenB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
23. Bronstein vs Geller 1-023 1955 Gothenburg InterzonalB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
24. Averbakh vs Taimanov  ½-½42 1956 USSR ChampionshipB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
25. J Yuchtman vs V Zurakhov  ½-½17 1956 Tbilisi ½f-USSR chB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
 page 1 of 146; games 1-25 of 3,630  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Joshka: <swapmeat> okay thanks didn't realize Kramnik has also lost with this line!
Jul-12-06  AdrianP: Another Rossolimo specialist Timman, almost invariably plays 4 O-O

click for larger view

In this line he has a score of +10 =11 -1, according to the database, which is also pretty impressive.

Almost enough to tempt you to give up on open sicilians.

Jul-12-06  AdrianP: Svidler plays both 4. Bxc6 and 4. O-O and has lost 0 games in 19 outings.

Repertoire Explorer: Peter Svidler (white)

Nov-10-06  Daoud911: Is there any reason for white to avoid e4-e5 in the g6 rossolimo variante?

click for larger view

e5 is a key move in black structure. Why white don't block it with e4-e5??? Plus, you get the Ne4 move with c5 attack and check threat (presuming black play Bg7).

Any comment?

Mar-17-07  legija: i started playing chess on tournaments in 2004...had problem with the sicilian,dragon,najdorf...and then i learned the B b5 sicilian...against both 2....Nc6 and 2....d6.....well im proud to say, i won 37 games with draws....lost 2 times, both times left a piece in a dominant position...believe me people,play it, play it...Bb5 is extremly logical, you develop a piece,prepare castling,attack his piece, threaten to damage his pawn structure,and gain a positional plus by exchanging the light square bishop ant place your pawn chain on light squares....what more can you ask from a single move?look at some Mickey Adams games,he plays it...also Rublevsky, get a stable game,winning chances, positional advantages...and in the large tree of the sicilian, when you play Bb5,black has the least counterplay...
Mar-17-07  SirBruce: I must study this opening more closely. I love the Ruy, and I hate facing the Sicilian, so this might be what I'm looking for...
Mar-17-07  square dance: if you hate facing the sicilian you shouldnt play 1.e4. what more can a kings pawn player hope for but an open sicilian?
Mar-17-07  SirBruce: Ummm... Ruy Lopez? Caro-Kann? Scandinavian?
Mar-17-07  square dance: if thats what you look forward to when you play 1.e4 then you're really a queens pawn player, but you just havent come out of the closet yet. ruy lopez aside, of course.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Colonel Mortimer: Only play 1.e4 if you enjoy playing against the Sicilian (goes without saying that you enjoy the Ruy, French, Caro etc) I like playing against the Sicilian because I believe it to be "positionally unsound". Many amateurs (1500-1800) consider the Sicilian an invincible weapon as Black and a fearsome defence against White - of course this is an exageration on both sides. One of the problems with the Sicilian is that there are so many ways it can be played - and this is dictated by White 80% of the time. The Rossolimo is like White saying to Black "okay wise guy you got big balls but can you think with them?"
Mar-17-07  SirBruce: If I were a 1.d4 player, there would be other defenses that I would also hate playing against because they gave black good chances. I'm just saying... the Sicilian gives me the most trouble (as it does for everyone else) and this might be a good way to confront it.
Mar-17-07  square dance: possibly. playing the open sicilian, especially the najdorf, is great fun if you enjoy tactics and sharp play.
Mar-17-07  legija: someone once told me that the only good thing about 1.d4 is that it does not allow 1....c5!!!, i mean, black can play c5,but then follows 2.d5....who wrote that the sicilian is positionally unsound????do the names Fischer,Kasparov ring a bell?......and can someone pleaaaase tell me a variation against the petroff which is not a sealed draw from the begining???i really hate that opening...i really do...
Mar-17-07  Plato: <legija: and can someone pleaaaase tell me a variation against the petroff which is not a sealed draw from the begining???i really hate that opening...i really do..>


1.e4 e5, 2.Nf3 Nf6, 3.Nxe5 d6, 4.Nxf7!? Kxf7, 5.d4

Before you laugh it off as a joke, you should know that it has been played at least seven Grandmasters in tournament play: Nadyrhanov, Reinderman, Santo Roman, Short, Shulman, Sulskis, B. Vuckovic. Stellwagen played it too, but he wasn't a GM yet so I didn't include him.

I'm not saying it's completely sound, but it sure is fun! A good surprise weapon, too :)

Mar-17-07  square dance: topalov also played the cochrane against kramnik a few years ago. it ended in a predictable draw.
Mar-17-07  Plato: I missed that one, thanks. And it wasn't just any old game -- he used it at Linares, 1999! As opposed to my variation above, he played 5.Nc3 instead of the usual 5.d4 (that's why I missed it in my search).

I'm not sure what you mean by <"it ended in a predictable draw">... The draw percentage for the Cochrane Variation is only 13%, so it's a great variation for someone like <legija> if he's looking for an unbalanced position.

Mar-18-07  legija: hi people, i purchased a book by Yusupov,the petrov defense,and in its 400 pages it contains all variations in detail...except the only one i nearly like, 1.e4 e5 , 2.Nf3 Nf6, 3.Ne5 d6, 4.Nf3 Ne4, 5.Nc3 N:c3, 6.d:c3..........i think ill try it...ill also take a look at that piece sacrifice line,thx!
Premium Chessgames Member
  ganstaman: <legija: someone once told me that the only good thing about 1.d4 is that it does not allow 1....c5!!!, i mean, black can play c5,but then follows 2.d5>

Old Benoni (A43)


Mar-06-10  rapidcitychess: <Plato>That Petrov line killed me on FICS!
Premium Chessgames Member
  lefthandsketch: Three part post on the rossolimo including ideas for both sides.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Opening of the Day

Sicilian, Gurgenidze Variation
1.e4 c5 2.♘f3 ♘c6 3.♗b5 g6 4.O-O ♗g7 5. ♖e1 e5 6.b4

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Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Opening of the Day

Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
1.e4 c5 2.♘f3 ♘c6 3.♗b5 g6

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  Naniwazu: In <Die Praxis meines Systems> we find the following remark to the game Nimzowitsch-Gilg (1927) after 3.Bb5: "This move is far better than its reputation and secures a balanced game".
Premium Chessgames Member
  AlbertodaCruz: I like much starts, Anand vs Kramnik, 1994, Moscow, B31, Rossolimo Variation, pretty and instructive.
Sep-30-13  Kikoman: <Opening of the Day>

Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 g6

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