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  1. #16
    Chess Mongoose Aaron Bellette's Avatar
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    I like the Exchange 4. c4 system developed by GM Maurice Ashley and IM Josh Waitzkin. Having said that, I hardly ever see the French of late because I've mainly played 1. c4, 1. f4, and 1. Nf3 openings of late, especially in my correspondence games.

    Aaron.
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  2. #17
    CC Candidate Master sleepless's Avatar
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    Here's an anti-French line that shocked me when I saw it on the ChessPub site. (given here minus annotations)
    White: Walter,Alain
    Black: Duffau,P (2038)
    Event: Creon FRA: 10th Open (3)
    Date: 2005-08-02
    (C00 Lengfellner System)

    1 e4 e6
    2 Bb5 a6
    3 Ba4 b5
    4 Bb3 Bb7
    5 d3 c5
    6 c3 Nc6
    7 Nf3 Be7
    8 0-0 d6
    9 Re1 Nf6
    10 Bc2 Qc7
    11 Nbd2 0-0
    12 Nf1 Rfe8
    13 Ng3 Rad8
    14 Bf4 e5
    15 Bg5 d5
    16 Bxf6 Bxf6
    17 exd5 Rxd5
    18 Ne4 Be7
    19 Re3 c4
    20 Nfg5 Bxg5
    21 Nxg5 f6
    22 Nxh7 e4
    23 Qg4 Kxh7
    24 dxe4 Rd2
    25 Qh5+ 1-0

  3. #18
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Why does Black play 2...a6 in that game? I have never faced 2.Bb5 in a rated game but in casual games I've always responded with 2...c6 when 3.Ba4 can be met with an immediate ...d5.
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  4. #19
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    I used to play French a lot about twenty years ago, and played against French few times until gave up 1.e4 completely.

    My personal experience with black - was happy to play against 3.e5 and 3.Nc3, really disliked 3.Nd2 as 3...c5 leads to a dry position. Later switched to 3...Nf6 or 3...de4. Btw, Rubinstein is quite good as white can easily overstep the boundaries pushing for a draw, but otherwise does not give winning chances. However, 3.Nd2 was one of the main reason I gave up French.

    For 3.Nc3 Bb4 see Botvinnik's games (especially annotated!) to get a good understanding of the line.

    My experience with white is limited, but I usually played 3.e5 followed later by a3 (as 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Qb6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.a3).

    Black can either respond with 6...a5, but IMHO inclusion of a3 a5 favours white, or continue 6...c4. In that case white has trouble with untangling queen side and weakness on d3, but solving those problem usually leads to a very good position. I even remember a game where I even managed to pull b4 when black could not enpassant, solving all problems and getting very pleasant position.

    Anyway, it was a very long time ago, so treat this advice with caution and make sure it satisfies your style and taste.

  5. #20
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axiom
    david , ever found anything on this line e4 e6 d5 d3 c5(any) f3?!, as above.
    This from back in 2005. I'd be forgiven for thinking you were obsessed!

    Curiously I see Kevin has now changed his sig to accommodate you!

    All that aside, I'd be indebted many HCDs for info on how to bugger up a Frenchie. Apologies Kevin, but the French really irks me - which I assume is music to the ears.

    I'm a Nd2 guy, which I am equally happy to note irked Igor!
    Last edited by Basil; 02-10-2006 at 01:46 AM.
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  6. #21
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Duggan
    Apologies Kevin, but the French really irks me - which I assume is music to the ears.
    It's such fun to play a line against someone who you know can't stand it.
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  7. #22
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    I find most players rated several hundred points lower than me like to play the Exchange French. They are usually to casual about it though, and not aware of the barbs in the position.

    I think for a player as white to find a good system with minimum effort might like to research the e4-Nc3-Nf3 system.

  8. #23
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris
    I find most players rated several hundred points lower than me like to play the Exchange French. They are usually to casual about it though, and not aware of the barbs in the position.
    Yes. Club players imagine that because it has a drawish reputation at GM level that it is suitable for playing for a draw against a stronger player at club level. However in fact that reasoning is fatally flawed. I like what Watson says about the whole concept:

    Quote Originally Posted by IM John Watson
    The exchange of pawns has actually deterred some players from playing the French Defence. With only one open file, they reason, both sides will mindlessly exchange their heavy pieces, and a drawish position will ensue. But there is a huge hole in this reasoning: in most cases, neither sides rooks belong on the e-file. Why? Because there will be no points of penetration available for them along the file, e.g. squares like e2, e3 and e4 for White and e7, e6 and e5 for Black will customarily be covered 2 or 3 times by that sides's pawns, knights and bishops. Moreover only one such defender is really necessary. So if, for example, White doubles or triples along the e-file while Black is blithely mounting a kingside pawn storm (backed by his rooks and queen) the second player has every chance of winning. Furthermore, Black can always make the struggle unbalanced should he choose. This has been pointed out and demonstrated by great players for at least 70 years.

    [..]Although the Exchange Variation appeals to players who are trying to draw against stronger players, allowing equality on the third move as White may not be the way to go about that. Be aware that it's a strategy that has failed miserably throughout the years.
    (my emphasis)

    I think for a player as white to find a good system with minimum effort might like to research the e4-Nc3-Nf3 system.
    That system is a bit annoying for a French player when they are not used to it and I have had a few losses against it through blunders or inaccurate piece placement. However once you have a bit more experience against it it starts to look fairly toothless and hackneyed. We have had a lot of games in this system on the top boards of Tassie tournaments lately and White is not getting a lot of satisfaction in the main line if after 11.Ne5 Black plays Watson's (2nd edn) move ...Qe8.
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  9. #24
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    That system is a bit annoying for a French player when they are not used to it and I have had a few losses against it through blunders or inaccurate piece placement. However once you have a bit more experience against it it starts to look fairly toothless and hackneyed. We have had a lot of games in this system on the top boards of Tassie tournaments lately and White is not getting a lot of satisfaction in the main line if after 11.Ne5 Black plays Watson's (2nd edn) move ...Qe8.
    Yes, I have been smashed up by Smerdon and Zhou with me playing black. That was the first time I had faced the opening, and it is obviously very hard against that calibre player to make it up as you go along. However, I will be interested to see if either try it against me a second time. I think I would do better now

  10. #25
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    interesting take

    In the book "an attacking repertiore for White" Sam Collins recommends "attacking" lines after 1.e4 against all black defences. For the French Collins recommends the advance line followed by h4 at the right time. Collins calls theis the "modern" approach against the French.

  11. #26
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qpawn
    In the book "an attacking repertiore for White" Sam Collins recommends "attacking" lines after 1.e4 against all black defences. For the French Collins recommends the advance line followed by h4 at the right time. Collins calls theis the "modern" approach against the French.
    Does he recommend that white castle in connection with this, or Rh3 ideas, or does he just recommend jettisoning the h-pawn and hoping for the best?

  12. #27
    CC Grandmaster Garrett's Avatar
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    As someone who played the French for years there are two lines I like least :-

    1/ Like Igor, the Tarrasch (3.Nd2).
    2/ The exchange system with c4.

    Cheers
    George.

  13. #28
    Account Permanently Banned Axiom's Avatar
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    possum power lines

    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Duggan
    This from back in 2005. I'd be forgiven for thinking you were obsessed!

    Curiously I see Kevin has now changed his sig to accommodate you!

    All that aside, I'd be indebted many HCDs for info on how to bugger up a Frenchie. Apologies Kevin, but the French really irks me - which I assume is music to the ears.

    I'm a Nd2 guy, which I am equally happy to note irked Igor!
    HD-you appear to be very adept at digging up the relevant post!...surprised you havent discovered the wealth of information on the possum in the 'dawn of the possum' thread!

    and for the history of this revolutionary opening see also axiom v vasia,axiom v kb, and siberian tiger threads........see also my possum games in chesschat tourn 3

  14. #29
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Comments please.

    The following is not a game I have any record of per se, but I have reached similar positions with white. I should imagine much depends on style and taste, but would appreciate objectivity.

    Thanks

    PGN Viewer
     
    Last edited by Basil; 03-10-2006 at 10:16 PM.
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  15. #30
    CC Grandmaster Alan Shore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Bellette
    I like the Exchange 4. c4 system developed by GM Maurice Ashley and IM Josh Waitzkin. Having said that, I hardly ever see the French of late because I've mainly played 1. c4, 1. f4, and 1. Nf3 openings of late, especially in my correspondence games.

    Aaron.
    I like this line - you can get into some interesting IQP positional struggles with it too.
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