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English, Symmetrical Variation (A32)
1 c4 c5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 e6

Number of games in database: 445
Years covered: 1904 to 2019
Overall record:
   White wins 31.0%
   Black wins 31.2%
   Draws 37.8%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
PRACTITIONERS
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Nukhim Rashkovsky  8 games
Boris Gelfand  6 games
Levon Aronian  6 games
Lev Alburt  7 games
Paul Keres  7 games
V Tukmakov  6 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
Karpov vs Topalov, 1994
C Jauregui vs J de Souza Mendes, 1959
F Olafsson vs Tal, 1971
Vaganian vs A Planinc, 1975
Aronian vs Carlsen, 2008
Reshevsky vs Fischer, 1970
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 page 1 of 18; games 1-25 of 445  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. S P Johnston vs H Voigt  0-1441904Chicago CC - Franklin CCA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
2. W Ward vs R E Lean  1-0201908BCF-ch 5thA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
3. P F van Hoorn vs Olland 1-0151926NED-chA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
4. Reti vs G Norman  ½-½311927Hastings 1926/27A32 English, Symmetrical Variation
5. Colle vs Yates  0-1271927KecskemetA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
6. Capablanca vs Spielmann ½-½301928BudapestA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
7. Gruenfeld vs Spielmann 1-0491929ViennaA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
8. G A Thomas vs Marshall 0-1251929KarlsbadA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
9. Nimzowitsch vs Rubinstein 0-1301930San RemoA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
10. Morozkov vs Ilyin-Zhenevsky  0-1301931Ch URS (1/2 final)A32 English, Symmetrical Variation
11. Alekhine vs E Steiner 1-0361931Prague OlympiadA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
12. H Steiner vs F Reinfeld  ½-½441932PasadenaA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
13. F Kunert vs Spielmann  1-0501933EbenseeA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
14. S Landau vs R Rey Ardid  ½-½561936OstendA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
15. W Winter vs Menchik  1-0271937Hastings 1936/37A32 English, Symmetrical Variation
16. I Raud vs Keres  ½-½421938Tallinn, Est team chA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
17. C Kottnauer vs X Vasicek  1-0271943ZlinA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
18. R Navarro vs Keres  0-1221943MadridA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
19. M Beilin vs Keres 0-1371945Kalev-Daugava team matchA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
20. Nerzesov vs Keres 0-1191946TbilisiA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
21. Kholmov vs Keres 0-1401947MoscowA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
22. L Taro vs G Schain  0-1341948Puget Sound LeagueA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
23. Taimanov vs Pachman  ½-½331952Stockholm InterzonalA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
24. Petrosian vs Keres ½-½411953Zurich CandidatesA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
25. Filip vs Pachman  ½-½391954CSR-ch 1953 playoffA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
 page 1 of 18; games 1-25 of 445  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-12-02
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Black wins more than White in this variation!!
Feb-13-04  marcus13: Because to be in this opening whit cannot continues by Nf3 because it would be an atoher opening. This is the reason why Black win all thoses games.
Jun-19-07  nummerzwei: I have to admit that I do not understand your comment. You perhaps only typed to fast, but I donīt think it is not desirable for white to move his knight back to f3 in this line. I suppose you meant Nc3, butif black continues differently than 5...Nc6 (A33), for example with 5...Bb4, itīs still A32.(There are in fact some Nimzo-Indian games starting with 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Nf3 c5 5.g3 cxd4 listed under A32.) Iīm looking forward to your answer.
Sep-06-07  simsim: We have the following definitions:
A33: 1. c4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. d4 cd4 4. Nd4 e6 5. Nc3 Nc6 and
A32: 1. c4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. d4 cd4 4. Nd4 e6

The Nimzo-lines that occur after 5. Nc3 Lb4 are not the mainlines, but rather non-critical sidelines. Together with all other white's 5. move deviations, A32 contains a lot of second rate moves. Only 5.g3 seems like a first rate move, but its performance is not overwhelming. I think this explains the bad statistic for white in this variation.

Sep-06-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <simsim> -- <I think this explains the bad statistic for white in this variation.> This is true, up to a point. But Black has consistently scored well in both the A32 and A33 lines, especially in the last ten or twenty years. I used to play the English most of the time as White, but I gave it up, largely because of the Symmetrical Variation. I recall Ray Keene saying some years ago that he'd come to the conclusion that 3.d4 was a mistake (eg, 1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4).

I think the Closed Symmetrical, where White avoids playing d4, is still OK, but can lead to very dull drawish positions.

May-04-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Modern Benoni players who are frustrated by 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nf3 should take heart from this variation. You might not get to play your pride and joy, but you can get a good position as compensation.
Sep-20-10  rapidcitychess: I love playing this as black all the time.
You just get piece play, and white gets a Sicilian, which I am fine with.
Mar-30-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Opening of the Day:
English, Symmetrical Variation
1.c4 c5 2.♘f3 ♘f6 3.d4 cxd4 4.♘xd4 e6
Nov-05-13  Kikoman: <Opening of the Day>

English, Symmetrical Variation
1. c4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 e6


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