A win in the French Defense.


I imagine there are a number of guests here who are unfamiliar with the #Frenchdefense . A great system to use if you want to create some complications, and real chances for victory for black.

The French defense is rather stodgy. A semi closed opening, it never really opens up too much, as for example, in a double king pawn opening. It is more reminiscent of a turtle, hiding in it’s shell, waiting for you to get your hand too close…before you end up losing a finger! A snapping turtle!

I have added a game where I employ the black pieces in a #Frenchdefense , #advanced variation. (The name advanced is used because white advances his king pawn early to e5, thus creating a strong point from which to attack black’s king.)

Often, it is said, it is best to avoid doubling your pawns. Allowing pawns to be stacked, one atop the other, usually creates problems for your pawn’s mobility. 100% true! However, the pawns, when doubled, can defend certain key squares, provide open lanes for the rooks, and can even offer some support squares for a bishop…perhaps.

The point being…never become dogmatic in chess, as in life. When someone says “You can’t do this. Or you can’t do that.” You really have to ask “why?” If they don’t give you a reasonable, sound explanation to your liking, then I would suggest you keep an open mind to ideas about what you CAN and CANNOT do in life. Just about every rule in physics, for example, has to be re examined ever so often as new developments are occurring all the time. New developments which help to re write text books. So never abandon an idea…just because someone said it won’t work. Prove it for yourself. In this case, well, doubled pawns are sorta bad…but they offer some positives as well.

That concludes that short lesson. If you wish to learn more, just sign up for a lesson. THANKS!

National Master

Kofi Tatum

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My victory against a Fide master, playing the English Opening.

This game went pretty well for me. Black bringing the bishop out early to c5 has never really posed a huge problem for me. Particularly in slow games, when I can figure out how to blunt the pressure of the bishop along the g1-a7 diagonal.

My opponent’s handling of the opening seemed to leave something to be desired. I think black lacked forceful play. Allowing me to damage his pawn structure, with little compensation for it, was probably not the best thing to do. Also, black should have tried not to have allowed me to win a pawn so early in the game. This was what gave me plenty to play for in the middle game.