In addition to the basic Taimanov ideas we had to keep, we followed – in an original
manner – our two main concepts: ‘almost never play an early …d6’ (Scheveningen-style) and ‘push …h5 whenever you can’ (Paulsen-style).
The latest fashion, which we have to mention, did not even exist when we started
to write our book – the 7.Qf3 line. Readers will have the choice between the
peaceful 7…Bd6, and 7…d6 where we head for a sharp Sicilian, true to its style.
In the famous English attack with Be3 – Qd2 – 0-0-0, in addition to the well-known
…Bb4 and …Ne5, our second proposal – of which we can safely state that we are
most proud – is called the “Serbian variation” starting with …Bb4 and …0-0.
About the specific move order in reaching our Paulsen-Taimanov variation, there
are two possibilities. The first possibility is to start with 2… e6 and 4… Nc6, and the
second one is revealed by 2…Nc6 with 4…Qc7.
We decided on the move order 2…Nc6 and 4…Qc7 firstly because we all learned
this way in the Paulsen-Taimanov variation, but also for practical reasons.
Firstly, we avoid 5.Nb5, which results in typical Hedgehog set-ups, and these positions are not to everyone’s taste.
- Another reason is to keep in reserve the option
of playing …e5 at once, or sometimes even …g6 without touching the e-pawn. This
book is the result of twenty years of our work and playing the Taimanov combined.
We have played over 500 games in this variation and we desired to show all the
beauty and richness of “our” variation.
We hope that our book will conjure all this and more, and will help our readers into the labyrinths of our Taimanov Bible.