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Friday, March 17, 2017

An Interesting Line Against the French

     I used to play the French Defense regularly. That probably had a lot to do with Botvinnik being my favorite player early on and his One Hundred Selected Games was one of the few books that actually got read so much the cover fell off. 
     I was also influenced by CJS Purdy's book, Action Chess. In it he wrote that OTB he preferred giving white as few options as possible and that was the appeal of openings like the Dragon Sicilian (I never played it), the French and another of my favorites, the Caro-Kann. Purdy claimed that the Sicilian was too complicated and the Caro-Kann retarded black's development and needed a lot of study and that left the French. His recommendation was the line 3...dxe4, but I found it to be a bit too passive so I eventually went back to Botvinnik's favorite, the Winawer. 
     I have to confess that when playing over this game I had never seen white's 7th move and found it intriguing. My expanded Fritz 12 opening book shows that out of 220 games white won (not scored) 51 percent. I was surprised to find that it only shows up in two games in the Rybka opening book and is not listed at all in the HIARCS book. Nor did it show up in my correspondence book consisting of top level correspondence games. 

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