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  1. 30 Jan '13 08:58 / 1 edit
    I do some coaching in our Local School and this lad who is 15 I estimate to be around 1600 with lots of room for improvement but probably not worldchampion material.

    He plays:

    Scandinavian vs e4
    Old Benoni (1..c5 2..Nf6) vs d4

    as White: London System (2.Bf4) and the English (1.c4, 2.g3)

    I went with these sytems as they were quite easy to explain and understand positions etc - should I be now binning all these in favour of sicilians, 1..e5, mainline KID etc or making sure he totally understands these inside out before his first tournament.
  2. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    30 Jan '13 09:23
    Originally posted by plopzilla
    I do some coaching in our Local School and this lad who is 15 I estimate to be around 1600 with lots of room for improvement but probably not worldchampion material.

    He plays:

    Scandinavian vs e4
    Old Benoni (1..c5 2..Nf6) vs d4

    as White: London System (2.Bf4) and the English (1.c4, 2.g3)

    I went with these sytems as they were quite easy to expl ...[text shortened]... line KID etc or making sure he totally understands these inside out before his first tournament.
    If he's comfortable playing those openings then don't worry about it - although the Benoni is suspect against a booked up opponent. I'd leave the Sicilian alone unless he shows an interest. Against stronger players you want something you specialize in and they don't know - so stuff like the London System is fine (I play the Dutch after 1.d4 for that reason) - and against weaker ones it doesn't matter what you play so don't worry about the repetoire. The most important thing is tactical awareness - spotting tactics and calculating them correctly is what separates most chess players.

    He may want to switch from the Benoni to the King's Indian if he gets bad results with it but unless that happens don't worry about it.
  3. Standard member RJHinds
    The Near Genius
    30 Jan '13 10:18 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by plopzilla
    I do some coaching in our Local School and this lad who is 15 I estimate to be around 1600 with lots of room for improvement but probably not worldchampion material.

    He plays:

    Scandinavian vs e4
    Old Benoni (1..c5 2..Nf6) vs d4

    as White: London System (2.Bf4) and the English (1.c4, 2.g3)

    I went with these sytems as they were quite easy to expl ...[text shortened]... line KID etc or making sure he totally understands these inside out before his first tournament.
    I like the English Opening better than the London system, but if he plays the London 2.Nf3 before bf4 is the way I would go. Many players study the KID as Black and automatically go into that setup these days. And of course the Sicilian and the French defenses are also popular, but if the tournament is coming up quickly, it is probably better to concentrate on as few openings as possible until those are learned very well, including transpositions. And of course tactics is a must.

    P.S. This is something I need to do myself, however, since I have returned to chess, I am a little lazy and do not like to memorize opening variations anymore. I have forgotten most of the ones I used to know well. I am hoping to learn what I need to know through the osmosis of playing.
  4. 30 Jan '13 18:31
    I would not recommend 1...e5 against 1 e4 because White has too many options:

    King's Gambit, Vienna Game, 2 d4, 2 Bc4, and after 2 Nf3 Nc6, White still has the choice between the Italian, Ruy Lopez and Scotch.

    A player has to be prepared against all these possibilities if he wants to play 1...e5.
    (OK he can play the Petroff but still must hope for 2 Nf3)

    There is a player I know who played the Scotch Gambit every time he faced a kid who played 1...e5, because he knew the kid would not be prepared against that variation. And it worked very well ! With his Scotch Gambit he destroyed a lot of promising young players.

    The King's Gambit can also be dangerous for someone not expecting it. Remember Spassky-Fischer, Mar del Plata, 1960
  5. Standard member RJHinds
    The Near Genius
    30 Jan '13 18:54
    Originally posted by w0lver1ne
    I would not recommend 1...e5 against 1 e4 because White has too many options:

    King's Gambit, Vienna Game, 2 d4, 2 Bc4, and after 2 Nf3 Nc6, White still has the choice between the Italian, Ruy Lopez and Scotch.

    A player has to be prepared against all these possibilities if he wants to play 1...e5.
    (OK he can play the Petroff but still must hope for 2 ...[text shortened]... also be dangerous for someone not expecting it. Remember Spassky-Fischer, Mar del Plata, 1960
    That defeat in the King's Gambit caused Bobby Fischer to come up with the Fischer Defense to refute it. I have had good success using his defensive system against the King's Gambit, even though it is still not easy for anyone other than Fischer himself, I suppose.
  6. Standard member RJHinds
    The Near Genius
    30 Jan '13 19:37
    Originally posted by plopzilla
    I do some coaching in our Local School and this lad who is 15 I estimate to be around 1600 with lots of room for improvement but probably not worldchampion material.

    He plays:

    Scandinavian vs e4
    Old Benoni (1..c5 2..Nf6) vs d4

    as White: London System (2.Bf4) and the English (1.c4, 2.g3)

    I went with these sytems as they were quite easy to expl ...[text shortened]... line KID etc or making sure he totally understands these inside out before his first tournament.
    If he is going to play the Scandinavian vs e4 I suggest he be aware of the possibilities of white as explained in the following video:

    YouTube
  7. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    30 Jan '13 21:30 / 1 edit
    In a nutshell and my experience the KID depends on primarily 2 pawn breaks, either e5 or c5, depending on white's pawn center advances.
    There are also f5 lines where you've retreated the Nf6.
  8. 31 Jan '13 04:01
    Originally posted by plopzilla
    I do some coaching in our Local School and this lad who is 15 I estimate to be around 1600 with lots of room for improvement but probably not worldchampion material.

    He plays:

    Scandinavian vs e4
    Old Benoni (1..c5 2..Nf6) vs d4

    as White: London System (2.Bf4) and the English (1.c4, 2.g3)

    I went with these sytems as they were quite easy to expl ...[text shortened]... line KID etc or making sure he totally understands these inside out before his first tournament.
    That used to be exactly my repertoire a few years ago. I'm experimenting with new defences because it's very hard to win with black against any half-decent player with either the Scandinavian or the Old Benoni. I would recommend the French and the Dutch, which are equally easy to understand and offer better chances for a fight.
  9. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    31 Jan '13 05:50
    Originally posted by danilop
    That used to be exactly my repertoire a few years ago. I'm experimenting with new defences because it's very hard to win with black against any half-decent player with either the Scandinavian or the Old Benoni. I would recommend the French and the Dutch, which are equally easy to understand and offer better chances for a fight.
    I agree with your statement as far as it regards the Dutch defence - it is what I play against 1.d4 - the ideas are simple enough - on the other hand the execution can be difficult and much as I love it it's not entirely sound. From a white point of view the Scandy can be tricky - I'm never entirely pleased to see it.

    The difficulty with the French is that if white gets it right you can find yourself with a difficult and cramped position - which isn't the kind of game a youngster needs, or anyone else for that matter. For a beginner (d.k. if this applies) I'd recommend 1. e4 e5 2. whatever. so that they get used to sharp openings, but plopzilla's already determined the repertoire, so assuming his apprentice is happy with the openings he introduced him to it's probably best not to change them.
  10. 31 Jan '13 13:35
    Just let the kid keep playing and playing. His opening and style will find him.

    I saw the words 'first tournament' so make sure he knows what a chess clock is.
    (play him blitz so he can see how long 5 minutes really is.)

    The Centre Counter is a good one to kill off 1.e4 theory based players.

    Watch out for the Blackmar though, theory has this one ticked off but I see
    time and time again the White player hitting home (me included) from positions
    theory considers good or OK for Black.
    What theory expects after giving you this OK position if that you will now
    go on to a play an error free game and we all know at the under 2000 level
    this never happens.

    This is the same for all openings but v the Blackmar it is potent because White
    is (usually) ahead in the big D and has open lines.
  11. Standard member Kepler
    Demon Duck
    31 Jan '13 15:10
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    Just let the kid keep playing and playing. His opening and style will find him.

    I saw the words 'first tournament' so make sure he knows what a chess clock is.
    (play him blitz so he can see how long 5 minutes really is.)

    The [b]Centre Counter
    is a good one to kill off 1.e4 theory based players.

    Watch out for the Blackmar though, theory has ...[text shortened]... the Blackmar it is potent because White
    is (usually) ahead in the big D and has open lines.[/b]
    1. e4 d5
    2. d4 e5

    Now black can just get on and play chess instead of being afeared of the Big Bad BDG! That is what I used to do if white wanted to get clever when playing Centre Scandinavian Thingy many years ago. I found that most players just didn't really know what to do now as they got to play the Blackmar so rarely that the Lemberger Counter Gambit was completely unknown to them.
  12. 31 Jan '13 16:12
    Good idea. If it worked for you then why not.