Classical French

Technical questions regarding Openings, Middlegames, Endings etc.
PeterFarr
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Re: Classical French

Post by PeterFarr » Fri Feb 05, 2016 10:37 pm

As a French defence player for many years, I'd tend to agree with Roger and Joey; there is more to it than meets the eye, you can get opposite side castling in either direction, and it avoids all the theory. On the other hand I don't mind it when weaker players do it as a drawing try, because they tend to under-estimate the complexities ( they also forget the Chess for Tigers rule).

Of course I'm only talking about club level chess, I guess at master level it would be 95% draws?

Nick Grey
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Re: Classical French

Post by Nick Grey » Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:46 pm

Looks like 50% say gone wrong at move 5 & 50% wrong at move 3.
Even Bobby Fischer had trouble with the French.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Classical French

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:53 pm

Brian Towers wrote: Come on, it's a bit of a passion killer and gives black complete equality.
Believe that if you want, it's one of the points of playing it that the assertions of authors wishing to sell books on the French are not completely correct.

There is a line which I suspect leads to sterile equality. Players rated a hundred points or more higher might be reluctant to employ it.

Brian Towers
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Re: Classical French

Post by Brian Towers » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:57 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:There is a line which I suspect leads to sterile equality.
Please share!
Ah, but I was so much older then. I'm younger than that now.

MJMcCready
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Re: Classical French

Post by MJMcCready » Sat Feb 06, 2016 12:15 pm

The main strategy with the exchange French is to bore your opponent to sleep during the game isn't it?

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Classical French

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sat Feb 06, 2016 12:21 pm

MJMcCready wrote:The main strategy with the exchange French is to bore your opponent to sleep during the game isn't it?
Play the lines with c4 and it's an IQP game, similar in some respects to the Panov line in the Caro. I get around 60% with it.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Classical French

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Feb 06, 2016 6:48 pm

The thread has moved in a rather interesting direction.

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Joey Stewart wrote:I prefer 3. exd5 - french players will hate you for ruining all their theory
Authors are almost always disparaging to the Exchange French.

On "almost" though. Some of us are ploughing a lonely furrow. You’re quite right, it’s a genuine winning attempt for White if played with winning intentions. Morphy (edited) played it after all. It can’t be that bad.

Joey - just like he was last time he said it - is quite wrong. French players really don’t tend to hate the exchange. I’m sure there are a lot of ex-players who hate the exchange but that’s a rather different thing.


With regard to the early c2-c4 lines, they are also similar to a line of the Queen’s Gambit Accepted except that by waiting for Be2 or Bd3 before playing ... exd4 Black gains a tempo. For that reason alone the line must be technically inferior (and I suspect the pawn on c7 rather than e7 favours Black compared to the panov-botvinnik) but these are minor differences at club level.
Last edited by Jonathan Bryant on Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mike Truran
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Re: Classical French

Post by Mike Truran » Sat Feb 06, 2016 8:36 pm

Well, I gave up the French because of the Exchange variation around thirty years ago.

My grade has been on a gradual decline ever since. Whether that's because of my inferior choice of the Najdorf as a replacement or because of advancing years I can't really say. :lol: :oops:

Brian Towers
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Re: Classical French

Post by Brian Towers » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:30 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote: Murphy played it after all. It can’t be that bad.
I have to admit I've not heard of him. Was he Paul Morphy's Irish cousin?
Ah, but I was so much older then. I'm younger than that now.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Classical French

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:24 pm

Brian Towers wrote:
Jonathan Bryant wrote: Murphy played it after all. It can’t be that bad.
I have to admit I've not heard of him. Was he Paul Morphy's Irish cousin?
To be sure.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Classical French

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:29 pm

Mike Truran wrote:Well, I gave up the French because of the Exchange variation around thirty years ago.
Well that’s evidence for half my theory, at least.

TBH, it would be a bit odd to keep playing the French if you hate the exchange - or any other variation that’s very easily available to White for that matter.

MJMcCready
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Re: Classical French

Post by MJMcCready » Sun Feb 07, 2016 3:26 am

Mike Truran wrote:Well, I gave up the French because of the Exchange variation around thirty years ago.

My grade has been on a gradual decline ever since. Whether that's because of my inferior choice of the Najdorf as a replacement or because of advancing years I can't really say. :lol: :oops:
It's probably all those anti-Sicilians Mike. At least there's no anti-French to deal with.

Mike Truran
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Re: Classical French

Post by Mike Truran » Sun Feb 07, 2016 9:48 am

Yes, they certainly didn't help (until I went through some of Gallagher's book, which certainly did help).

But isn't the Exchange French effectively the same thing? :idea:

MJMcCready
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Re: Classical French

Post by MJMcCready » Sun Feb 07, 2016 10:06 am

Yes, I guess so.

Francis Fields
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Re: Classical French

Post by Francis Fields » Thu May 12, 2016 12:27 pm

I have trouble with the French and find that the exchange leads to what can only be described as a 'dull' position. Recently I have had a couple of games beginning 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Be7 5. e5 Nfd7 6. h4 h6 . I have tried 7.Qh5 h6 8. Bxe7 Qxe7 9.Qg5 but find the position difficult to play. MCO says 7. Be3 though in a recent game the bishop wasn't doing anything on that square!
"Politics is the enemy of the people who said that?" Samuel Johnson (the playwright not the architect)

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