The Reti Opening (1.Nf3) is a flexible and strong opening. Black needs an “anti-Reti” plan, although it’s not that commonly seen in tournaments. The Reti might also become a King’s Indian Attack, so Black also probably needs an “anti-King’s Indian Attack” line.
For Black, an “anti-Reti” system should probably prevent White from playing “2.e4”. Hence, “1..d5” is the main line of the Reti, to which White will often play “2.c4”.
Diagram: Anti-Reti d5 line
Black can play “2..d4” with a “Reverse Benoni” setup, or other alternatives for Black. Note that White might also avoid the “c4” move, preferring instead a Barcza System with g3 and Bg2, before possibly playing c4 later.
But “d5” is the main line of the Reti, so this is all the main Reti opening theory, which is hardly an “anti-Reti” opening. Black can, of course, choose a particular sub-line of the “d5” main lines of the Reti as the anti-Reti plan, if desired.
Other Lines for Black
Although d5 is the main line, there are many other options. Other Black replies include:
- 1..Nf6 … A common defence for Black. Flexible and also prevents “2.e4”. White usually plays “2.g3” if continuing in a Reti style (or a King’s Indian Attack). Otherwise, “2.d4” is becoming an Indian Defence (Queen Pawn with Delayed c4, by transposition), and “2.c4” is an English.
- 1..f5 .. Dutch Defence. This also prevents “e4” in theory, but it’s actually a gambit line for White with an official name: Lisitsin Gambit.
- 1..d6 … Anticipating an “Old Indian” line (after White plays “d4”) with a Bg4 move, or a “d6-e5-f5” setup of a Reverse Grand Prix Attack, but note that this also allows “2.e4” which is almost a Pirc Defence.
- 1..c5 … A playable line for Black. Note that this allows “2.e4” which transposes into the Sicilian Defence.
- 1..c6 … Like a Slav or a Caro-Pirc. Allows “2.e4” which might become a Caro Kann.
- 1..e6 … Note that this allows “2.e4” (almost a French Defence) and after “2.d4” we are heading for a QGD or an Indian (Nimzo-Indian, Queen’s Indian, etc.)
- 1..b6 … Intending a Queen’s Indian style, but it allows “2.e4” which is become an Owen’s Defence by transposition.
- 1..g6 … With thoughts of a King’s Indian. But also allows “2.e4” towards a Modern Defence.
- 1..b5 .. Polish Defence. Also allows “2.e4” which is heading towards a St George (a6) or a Polish (b4!?)
- 1..e5? … Not a great move, considering “2.Nxe5!”, but maybe someone thinks it’s a gambit line.