Countering the Reti with 1...d5 and 2...Nd7

The Reti is one of the most flexible openings for White. It starts with 1.Nf3. With this move White is temporarily giving up the centre to strike back later. Normally only allowing one pawn in the centre. With the move 1…d5 we put one pawn in the centre. With the move 2…Nd7 we are threatning …e5 and putting a second pawn in the centre. It already gives White a difficult choice. The only move to prevent …e5 is 3.d4, but this is a move White normally doesn’t want to play. Most Reti players want to play with c4, d3 and sometimes even try to break with e4. Basically the strategy is to put the pawns on the light squares. From this perspective 2…Nd7 is extremely annoying. White has to give up on the centre or play 3.d4. In this DVD IM Nico Zwirs will show how you have to play against both scenario’s. It is easy to learn and based on standard principles.


Sample video


  • Introduction
  • Theory
  • 1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 Nd7
  • 3.c4
  • 3.Bg2
  • 3.d4

Reti Opening

In the 1920s the then so-called “hyper-moderns” broke away from the dogma that at the start of the game the centre absolutely had to be occupied with pawns. Instead of playing 1.e4 or 1.d4 they opened with 1.Nf3 and left it up to Black to follow up in the classical pattern with 1...d5. This results in the starting position of the system of Richard Réti (1889–1929), who from 1923 on played in this way with great success against the strongest of opposition. In the Réti System White holds back his central pawns for some time; instead he increases his central influence by playing the fianchetto g3, Bg2 and plans to attack the black d-pawn with c2-c4 – either on the second move or later.

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