Robert Ris’ Fast and Furious: English Four Knights

by Robert Ris
9/23/2021 – This week, well-known Dutch trainer Robert Ris shows how Black can get good attacking chances in the Four Knights Variation of the English Opening, using one of his own games from the Dutch Team Championship as example. | "Fast and Furious" is available on-demand with a ChessBase Premium Account. You can register a Premium account here.

Mastering Pattern Recognition in the Opening Mastering Pattern Recognition in the Opening

Pattern recognition is an important tool in modern chess, as it helps you to understand better the characteristics of a position. Particularly when you have been confronted with a surprise opening system played by your opponent, it helps when you can just


Last Saturday the new season of the Dutch League started after a one and a half year hiatus. As Black, I managed to win in quite a nice attacking style in the English Four Knights Variation.

The line  with 4.e3 Bb4 is currently very popular at the highest level, as it might lead to an unbalanced middlegame in which White gives up the right to castle for the bishop pair. However, as the present game shows, Black obtains tremendous attacking chances and has good chances to exploit the deficiencies of White's setup.

Exercise: Black to play


You can move the pieces on the live diagram!

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Robert is an International Master who mostly spends his time training and coaching talented youngsters. On the PlayChess server The Fast and the Furious is a popular show where he explains sharp opening lines for a wider audience. He is also a well-known ChessBase author who produced numerous DVDs and regularly contributes to ChessBase Magazine as well. Since 2015 he is the organizer of the Dutch Rapid Championships in his home town Amstelveen. He has started a YouTube channel with chess analysis as well.


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