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  1. 19 Feb '08 23:29
    How do you deal with this beast? It seems that White always has a move advantage on Black, no matter how well Black plays... or am I giving this variation way more credit than it deserves?

    Is the reason for it's great popularity at club level because of Morphy's influence? I believe he played it quite a bit, if not mistaken.
  2. 20 Feb '08 01:55 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Crushing Day
    How do you deal with this beast? It seems that White always has a move advantage on Black, no matter how well Black plays... or am I giving this variation way more credit than it deserves?

    Is the reason for it's great popularity at club level because of Morphy's influence? I believe he played it quite a bit, if not mistaken.
    When I play the French Defense, the Exchange Variation doesn't bother me. As long as you don't trade off all of the heavy pieces on the open e-file, both sides have excellent winning chances. For some reason, Black has a winning score in the Exchange Variations in large databases. The late GM Edmar Mednis sometimes played the French Defense and once wrote an article on the opening for Chess Life Magazine, and claimed that he never lost from the Black side of the Exchange Variation.
  3. Standard member JonathanB of London
    Curb Your Enthusiasm
    20 Feb '08 14:46 / 2 edits
    I've written about the French Exchange a few times on our club blog. The most recent article (which contains links to the others) is here:-

    http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.com/2008/02/interesting-french-exchange-iv.html

    (It includes two nice, if quite well known, wins by Korchnoi against 3. exd5).


    As for the influence of Morphy on club players today ... I doubt it somehow. I suspect those who play the exchange do it mostly because (a) it's just easier and (b) it gives a more open game.

    I know (b) is probably why Morphy played the line himself but I'm not convinced his opening repertoire is widely known at club level. Not the club level I play at anyway.



    You probably don't want to listen to me, though. I've just finished this game:-

    Game 4478552


    [edit]
    just realised that game link is pretty much useless because it's one of those with no game history.

    I was on the black side of a game that started

    1. e4 e6, 2. d4 d5, 3. exd5 exd5, 4. Nf3 Bg4, 5. h3 Bh5 6. Qe2
  4. 20 Feb '08 14:57
    As a long time French player, I find it quite difficult to play against the line which starts 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.c4.
  5. 22 Feb '08 21:19 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by Fat Lady
    As a long time French player, I find it quite difficult to play against the line which starts 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.c4.
    I have asked the same question to a buddy: a very highly rated RHP player. He adviced me to make a "setup like Nc6 - Bg4 - Bd6- Nge7 - h6 (avoiding thematic sacrifice on h7) - 0-0." it works ok for me.

    Hope this helps.

    p.s. Oh, by the way, due to some morMons harrassing him, this helpful poster does not post in the RHP forums anymore.
  6. Standard member afx
    22 Feb '08 22:56
    Originally posted by JonathanB of London
    ...
    Game 4478552


    [edit]
    just realised that game link is pretty much useless because it's one of those with no game history.

    I was on the black side of a game that started

    1. e4 e6, 2. d4 d5, 3. exd5 exd5, 4. Nf3 Bg4, 5. h3 Bh5 6. Qe2[/b]
    You can fix the game history of your game
    Try
    http://www.redhotpawn.com/gameanalysis/gamefix.php?gameid=4478552
  7. 23 Feb '08 01:20
    Originally posted by Crushing Day
    How do you deal with this beast? It seems that White always has a move advantage on Black, no matter how well Black plays... or am I giving this variation way more credit than it deserves?

    Is the reason for it's great popularity at club level because of Morphy's influence? I believe he played it quite a bit, if not mistaken.
    Uhlmann recommends a set up involving Bd6, Nge7, Nc6, Qd7 and 0-0-0. It gets away from the drawish lines with mutual pawn storms etc. Very often white plays Bg5 before you castle q-side still expecting a k-side castle. This helps you launch your k-side pawns and white will launch q-side pawns at you.

    There should be a few of Wolfgang Ulhmann's French games in chesslab.
  8. 23 Feb '08 02:51
    Originally posted by Fat Lady
    As a long time French player, I find it quite difficult to play against the line which starts 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.c4.
    Actually thats the sub-variation that I find easiest. I know you have better competition, but my theory is that since white commits to an isolated pawn, so just play Nf6, Be7, 0-0, then Nb8-d7-g6 (blockading not trying to win the pawn).
  9. 23 Feb '08 14:05
    Originally posted by JonathanB of London




    You probably don't want to listen to me, though. I've just finished this game:-

    Game 4478552


    [edit]
    just realised that game link is pretty much useless because it's one of those with no game history.

    I was on the black side of a game that started

    1. e4 e6, 2. d4 d5, 3. exd5 exd5, 4. Nf3 Bg4, 5. h3 Bh5 6. Qe2[/b]
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    On the contrary-- I do read every response to this thread and appreciate stronger players input!!


    It's kind of funny in the line you showed e4 e6 d4 d5 ed5 ed5 Nf3 Bg4 -- my opening book for all my chess engines has a "?" beside Bg4, which seems pretty bizarre.
  10. Standard member JonathanB of London
    Curb Your Enthusiasm
    23 Feb '08 14:17
    Originally posted by Crushing Day

    It's kind of funny in the line you showed e4 e6 d4 d5 ed5 ed5 Nf3 Bg4 -- my opening book for all my chess engines has a "?" beside Bg4, which seems pretty bizarre.[/b]
    Yes, there are plenty of people who will tell you that ... Bg4 is less precise than, say, ... Nf6.

    Perhaps that's true but anyway ... Bg4 looks most logical to me and it clearly doesn't lose so I'm happy to play it.

    Nigel Short also favours it - e.g. against Kasparov and his crucial last round game against Gurevich in the 1990 Manila interzonal - so it can't be that bad. Certainly doesn't deserve a "?" or even a "?!" IMHO.

    J
  11. 28 Mar '08 08:44 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Crushing Day
    How do you deal with this beast? It seems that White always has a move advantage on Black, no matter how well Black plays... or am I giving this variation way more credit than it deserves?

    Is the reason for it's great popularity at club level because of Morphy's influence? I believe he played it quite a bit, if not mistaken.
    It makes sense if you prefer open games.
    Nigel Davies in Gambiteer I recommends the French wing gambit after 1.e4...e6 2.Nf3...d5 3.e5...c5 4.b4!?...cxb4 then the critical 5.d4!

    I beat an ECF 117 (who was ECF 150 4 years ago) last night playing the exchange variation of the French:

    [Event "Club Championship"]
    [Site "Crawley Chess Club"]
    [Date "27-03-08"]
    [White "S. Collyer"]
    [Black "B. Lanzer"]
    [TimeControl "42 in 90"]
    [Result "1-0"]
    [ECO "C01"]

    1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Bd3 Nf6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Be3 Bd6 7.Nbd2 c6 8.c4 dxc4 9.Bxc4 Nbd7 10.Qb3 O-O 11.O-O Qc7 12.g3 Nb6 13.Rac1 Nxc4
    14.Qxc4 Rfe8 15.Rfe1 Nd5 16.Qb3 a5 17.a3 a4 18.Qd3 g6 19.Bh6 Bf5 20.Qf1 b5 21.Rxe8+ Rxe8 22.Re1 Re7 23.Nh4 Rxe1 24.Qxe1 Qe7
    25.Qc1 Bd7 26.Kf1 f6 27.Qc2 Bh3+ 28.Ng2 Qe8 29.Ne4 Bc7 30.Kg1 f5 31.Ng5 Bd8 32.Nxh3
    1-0

    Position after 10.Qb3:
  12. 28 Mar '08 09:08
    If nothing else, the French Exchange solves black's light-squared bishop problem.
  13. 28 Mar '08 11:25
    Originally posted by Green Paladin
    If nothing else, the French Exchange solves black's light-squared bishop problem.
    Just waiting for someone to say "the exchange is dull & drawish - that's why GM's don't play it".
    To which should come the automated response; "I'll remember that next time I play a GM!"
  14. 28 Mar '08 11:29
    Originally posted by Squelchbelch
    Just waiting for someone to say "the exchange is dull & drawish - that's why GM's don't play it".
    To which should come the automated response; "I'll remember that next time I play a GM!"
    The exchange is dull and drawish and thats why I have a game like this with it.

    [Event "Blitz Game"]
    [Site "chesshere.com"]
    [Date "2008.03.12"]
    [White "elonater"]
    [Black "Theknowingguy"]
    [Result "1-0"]


    1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 exd5 4. c4 dxc4 5. Bxc4 Nf6 6. Nf3 Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. Nc3 Re8 9. Ng5 Rf8 10. Re1 h6 11. Nf3 a6 12. Be3 b5 13. Bb3 Be6 14. d5 Bxd5 15. Nxd5 Nxd5 16. Bxd5 c6 17. Bb3 Bf6 18. Qc1 a5 19. Bxh6 gxh6 20. Qxh6 Nd7 21. Bc2 1-0



  15. 28 Mar '08 11:40
    Originally posted by tomtom232


    [Event "Blitz Game"]
    [Site "chesshere.com"]
    [Date "2008.03.12"]
    [White "elonater"]
    [Black "Theknowingguy"]
    [Result "1-0"]


    1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 exd5 4. c4 dxc4
    4...dxc4? is pretty nice of him to give up the central pawn & develop your bishop.
    Nice bishop sac on 19 for the win though.