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Budapest Gambit (A52)
1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e5 3 dxe5 Ng4

Number of games in database: 2043
Years covered: 1896 to 2023
Overall record:
   White wins 48.3%
   Black wins 25.4%
   Draws 26.3%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Ivan Farago  13 games
Viktor Korchnoi  7 games
Tim Reilly  7 games
Igor Nikolayev  21 games
Pavel Blatny  19 games
Wolfgang Heidenfeld  19 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
F Vallejo Pons vs A Romero Holmes, 2002
Capablanca vs Tartakower, 1928
G Sigurjonsson vs A S Segal, 1968
Rubinstein vs Vidmar, 1918
Helmer vs J Krejcik, 1917
Henricksen vs Bjarne Pedersen, 1937
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 page 1 of 82; games 1-25 of 2,043  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Adler vs Maroczy 0-1181896BudapestA52 Budapest Gambit
2. J Esser vs Breyer 0-1311916BudapestA52 Budapest Gambit
3. Helmer vs J Krejcik 0-1171917ViennaA52 Budapest Gambit
4. P Scheller vs Gruenfeld  1-0131918Deutschen Wochenschach corrA52 Budapest Gambit
5. Rubinstein vs Vidmar 0-1241918Berlin Four MastersA52 Budapest Gambit
6. Rubinstein vs Schlechter ½-½311918Berlin Four MastersA52 Budapest Gambit
7. Rubinstein vs J Mieses 0-1311918Berlin Four MastersA52 Budapest Gambit
8. Spielmann vs Reti 1-0311919BerlinA52 Budapest Gambit
9. Capablanca vs J H White 1-0511919Simul, 28bA52 Budapest Gambit
10. R P Michell vs W Winter  1-0221919HastingsA52 Budapest Gambit
11. S Takacs vs J Krejcik 0-161920Vienna blitzA52 Budapest Gambit
12. G Filep vs Reti  ½-½361920Reti - Filep MatchA52 Budapest Gambit
13. H Weenink vs Reti  ½-½341920AmsterdamA52 Budapest Gambit
14. Spielmann vs Reti  1-0241921MatchA52 Budapest Gambit
15. Bogoljubov vs Reti 1-0261921KielA52 Budapest Gambit
16. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0311921Exhibition gameA52 Budapest Gambit
17. N Whitaker vs V Sournin / N S Perkins / W H Mutc  1-0461922Consultation gameA52 Budapest Gambit
18. Reshevsky vs S Katz 0-1181922Simul, 6bA52 Budapest Gambit
19. Euwe vs Spielmann 0-1261922Bad PistyanA52 Budapest Gambit
20. Bogoljubov vs L Prokes 1-0141922Bad PistyanA52 Budapest Gambit
21. Saemisch vs Spielmann  1-0301923CopenhagenA52 Budapest Gambit
22. Yates vs Spielmann 1-0341923KarlsbadA52 Budapest Gambit
23. F Bohatirchuk vs Ilyin-Zhenevsky 1-0291923USSR ChampionshipA52 Budapest Gambit
24. Euwe vs J Mieses 1-0321923Hastings 1923/24A52 Budapest Gambit
25. Kostic vs A Coleman 1-0311924Simultaneous blindfold exhibitionA52 Budapest Gambit
 page 1 of 82; games 1-25 of 2,043  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-18-06  jahhaj: <NateDawg> I think you misread my post, comfortable edge was what I said, not considerable advantage. That the main thing that strikes me about this line. White's game is comfortable, he has reasonable winning chances, a clear plan, and no losing chances I can see.

I wouldn't look to a computer evaluation to judge an opening. I score very heavily against the Budapest, that's what I base my evaluation on.

I know an early 10...a5 is a current favourite for Black. If that line holds up then White can switch to the older 7.a3 which is also good.

In your position the usual queen side advance is called for I think, 14.b4. Looks OK to me.

Oct-18-06  jahhaj: <NateDawg> I really don't see the Ne5 as powerful. Inn fact I think it's one of Black's problems. If White gets a pawn to c5 (not hard to do) then Black sometimes cannot take dxc5 because the d6 pawn is needed to defend the knight. This can mean the d6 pawn is weak after White plays cxd6.

Black can avoid this by playing Ng6 but that puts the knight rather out of play. I don't see that it has any other good squares.

Oct-18-06  siggemannen: just play 1.d4 2.nf3 3.c4 and no budapest ever
Oct-18-06  RookFile: Is life that easy? When you play 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3, black can play either 2...c5, and you can't play the best lines in the Benoni involving f4, or 2....b6, which leads to super-solid lines in the Queen's Indian that are very difficult to beat.
Oct-20-06  ongyj: Haha <RookFile> If someone plays 2...c5 against me I'll simply bore him to death with 3.e3 :) Yeah life is easy after all, so long as you are willing to make it so! Also, in the above lone after 11.a3 can't Black choose to keep the Bishop with 11...Bc5 ? Thanks for answering these questions.
Oct-18-07  Harvestman: As a demonstration of how NOT to play the Budapest Gambit, I played the following atrocity as black over the board in a local league match last night, with plenty of time on my clock (i.e. not a rapidplay or anything)

1.d4 Ng6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Nf3 Bb4+ (mistake number 1) 5.Nc3 Bxc3+ (No. 2) 6.bxc3 Nc6 7.Bg5 (Oh dear) f6 8.exf6 Nxf6 9.e3 Qe7 (0-0) 10.Qc2 d6 (possibly Ne5 is better) 11.Bd3 g6? 12.Bxg6 1-0

My team captain was not impressed.

Aug-25-08  DarthStapler: Awesome opening
Aug-29-08  therangeravl: The Alekhine Variation is surely the most unusual and therefore most unpleasant variation for black. I think I read somewhere that 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 Nxe5 5.f4 Nec6 6.a3!? a5 7.Be3 Na6 8.Bd3 Bc5 is about equal, but what about the direct 6.Be3 ? Could Black simply develop the same way or should he delay a5?

Aug-29-08  niemzo: After 6.Be3, black can play Bb4+ and keep the option of a5 for a later move. White doesn't waste a tempo with a3 so black shouldn't delay his own development.For example, after 7.Nc3 Bxc3 black has damaged white's pawn structure and has even the option of long castling after fianchettoing the bishop.
Aug-29-08  whiteshark: <Harvestman> After 11...Bg4

click for larger view

I think there is still plenty of play in it. I wouldn't call it 'sufficient compensation', though. :D

Apr-13-09  Nasgard: Whats wrong with 4.Qd4? I'm sure white must fall into a trap somewhere if he plays it, because at first glance it seems to hold everything down.
Apr-13-09  blacksburg: <Nasgard> hmmm...good question.

4...d6 would seem to be the move.

5.exd6 Bxd6 and no immediate trap, but black has a major lead in development.

for example

M Foudzi-Ahmad vs C Rogers, 2001
Beliavsky vs Epishin, 1991
M Foudzi-Ahmad vs H Shafruddin, 2001
Kobe vs G Georges, 1985
P Wharton vs Ali Abdoullah Elmejbi, 1980
V Kovalenko vs Beimanov, 1990
J Laszlo vs L Alfoldy, 1933

here's the only game that white has won in this line, according to the database.

V Eryomenko vs A Zakharchenko, 2001

Apr-13-09  blacksburg: upon closer inspection, this line seems to be like the Two Knights Defense (C55) with 4.Ng5 - it's probably very good for black, but you had better know your tactics before going in to it.
Apr-13-09  Nasgard: <blacksburg> Yeah looking at those games, while 4…d6 does make the gambit permanent, black's lead in development is more than adequate compensation – and it's obviously very easy to blunder, as M Foudzi-Ahmad vs C Rogers, 2001 testifies to.

I’m just studying up on the Budapest because a 10 year old kid surprised me with it, and beat me in a match last weekend. I tried 4.e4 Alekhine’s variation, but fell into a really embarrassing trap. I’ve being going over it all day on Fritz and I believe white’s best try is probably 4.Bf4 – then 4…Nc6 5.Nf3 and if 5…Bb4+ 6.Nbd2 – but obviously white has to be careful there if black plays 6…Qe7 with very nasty surprises in mind.

Apr-13-09  chessman95: <Nasgard: Whats wrong with 4.Qd4? I'm sure white must fall into a trap somewhere if he plays it, because at first glance it seems to hold everything down.>

Funny reputation that too-good-to-be-true moves have built up over these past few trap-obsessed decades...

Apr-13-09  chessman95: <I’ve being going over it all day on Fritz and I believe white’s best try is probably 4.Bf4 – then 4…Nc6 5.Nf3 and if 5…Bb4+ 6.Nbd2 – but obviously white has to be careful there if black plays 6…Qe7 with very nasty surprises in mind.>

I can give a little advise if you like... the 6.Nbd2 line is called the Rubinstein Variation, and 6...Qe7 is indeed black's best move. After that white should probably play 7.a3, and the game usually continues 7...Ngxe5 8.Nxe5 Nxe5 9.e3 Bxd2+ 10.Qxd2 with the resulting position:

click for larger view

which is no more than slightly better for white. The other (main) option at move 6 is Nc3, which I beleive is considered the main line. Here the game usually goes: 6.Nc3 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 Qe7 8.Qd5 f6 and now the exchange 9.exf6 Nxf6 and the queen should retreat to d3 with this position:

click for larger view

where white probably has more of an advantage than in the Rubinstein Variation.

-- In case anyone didn't get some of the moves in those lines, it is probably because the black queen on e7 and knight on e5 threaten smothered mate at times, making these lines very tactical.

I know it's kind of embarrising that I know some of this theory, but I guess my early fascination of gambits lured me into these crazy defenses... don't worry though; I play much more sound openings now.

Apr-13-09  Marmot PFL: <chessman95> Even if you don't play these openings you still have to meet them. I play that line for white too, but usually just play 7 e3, 8 Be2, and 9 0-0 instead of wasting time with a3.
Apr-14-09  Nasgard: Yeah I think a3 is a bit of a nothing move because the Bishop can't be taken, so why attack it?
Apr-14-09  chessman95: <Marmot PFL: <chessman95> Even if you don't play these openings you still have to meet them. I play that line for white too, but usually just play 7 e3, 8 Be2, and 9 0-0 instead of wasting time with a3.>

<Nasgard: Yeah I think a3 is a bit of a nothing move because the Bishop can't be taken, so why attack it?>

You are both right that the bishop cannot be taken immediatly, but this does not mean in any way that it is a 'wasted move' or anything. Just because a move does not have any immediate forced effect on the game does not mean it's 'useless', because once the mating tactics are eliminated the bishop will have to move or capture.

A good example of this is in the Ruy. The ...Qd4 tactic that black has means that the move 3.Bb5 does not have any immediate influence, and in fact the move can be totally ignored if the black player so wishes. However, in the long run the pressure that the bishop gives becomes enormous, and usually lands black in a somewhat cramped position.

Jul-18-09  notyetagm: Anyone know what line World Champion Viswanathan Anand plays against the <BUDAPEST GAMBIT> in simuls?

Only one such game exists in the database, Anand vs J Garcia Sanchez, 2007, in which Anand plays the <ADLER DEFENSE>.

Anand's simul play against the Budapest Gambit was addressed in <New In Chess Yearbook 88>; could someone please tell me what that Yearbook says Anand plays against the Budapest in simuls?


Aug-19-09  muwatalli: does anyone know of any other ways to deal with the rubinstein variation other than 8... f6 or 8... Qa3. for instance early deviations or some such? i like the budapest defense but i sometimes have trouble with this variation. usually i don't find tactical compensation after 8 f6 exf6 9 nxf6 qd3 10 d6 followed by white playing e3 or g3, and qa3 is just not so good. but maybe i am just missing something.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Here's an interesting little game, published in the <New York Evening Post> of April 25, 1936, and played between two players who, for reasons which may become clear, preferred to remain anonymous.

<1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.e4 h5 5.f4 Bc5 6.Nf3 f6 7.exf6 Qxf6 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.Bd2?! g5?!>

Up to the last move on each side the play has not been too unusual, at least not for a Budapest Gambit. However, <9.Bd2> was not good, and Black probably should have chomped away with 9...Nf2. Instead, they went in for the trappy <9...g5>, leading to this position:

click for larger view

White now finds the second-worst move on the board:

<10.Nxg5?? Qxg5! 11.fxg5? Bf2+ 12.Ke2 Nd4+ 13.Kd3 Ne5#>

Now, half of you are probably thinking, "What was the worst move?", while the other half are wondering, "Why not 10.fxg5?" You're both thinking the same thing: 10.fxg5?? Bf2+ 11.Ke2 Qxf3+!!, and it's mate after either 12.gxf3 Nd4+ 13.Kd3 Ne5#, or 12.Kxf3 Nd4+ 13.Kf4 O-O#!

No other information is available about the game, except that it was played in a rapid transit (ten seconds per move) tournament.

Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <Phony Benoni> Black must have been a very strong player to see that in a rapid-transit game.
Sep-02-15  MarkFinan: This is the strangest opening (Imo) in Stockfish's opening repertoire. I always do well with it from the white side of things but I can see why no top players play it. Not that many games in the database anyway, but.. Plenty of them are decisive games. I like it.
Aug-28-17  whiteshark: as from today in the upload-pool:

Event "Budapest FS04 GM"
Site "Budapest"
Date "2000.04.11"
Round "11"
White "Hoang Thanh Trang"
Black "Kahn, Evarth"
Result "0-1"
ECO "A52"
WhiteElo "2448"
BlackElo "2301"

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e5 3. dxe5 Ng4 4. Nf3 Bc5 5. e3 Nc6 6. Be2 Ngxe5 7. Nc3 O-O 8.O-O Nxf3+ 9. Bxf3 Ne5 10. Be2 Re8 11. a3 a5 12. b3 Ra6 13. Nd5 Qh4 14. g3 Qh3 15. e4 Rd6 16. b4 Ree6 17. Bh5 Bd4 18. Ra2 Rg6 19. Kh1 Rxd5 20. cxd5 d6 21. Bf4 Rf6 22. Be2 g5 23. Bxg5 Rf3 24. g4 Nxg4 25. Bf4 Rxf2 0-1

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