Wednesday, March 1, 2017

French Defence John Crompton

John Crompton played this cute quickie in the French Defence. The Exchange Variation starts with symmetrical pawn structure but either side can attack with pawns and pieces. Paul Morphy played 3.exd5 vs the French Defence and he won almost all the time.

Crompton sent me more games in this same line. Often John got great positions out of the opening with the Black pieces. He plays as "JECmate". John Crompton wrote of this game: "Tim Sawyer, I just started to play the French when I got your book online."

White’s one tempo lead disappeared after 4.h3 c5 5.dxc5 Bxc5 when Black led in development. His tenth move caught my attention with 10...Qg3!? Hope you like it.

prodonvito (1568) - JECmate (1605), Live Chess, 17.02.2017 begins 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.h3 [White was apparently afraid of having his knight pinned after 4.Nf3 but he should have been afraid of falling behind in development.] 4...c5 [Black is ready for action, even at the minor risk of an isolated pawn. Obviously good is 4...Nf6=] 5.dxc5 [5.Bb5+ Nc6 6.Nf3=] 5...Bxc5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Bd3 [7.Nc3 Be6 8.Bd3=] 7...Nf6 [Another plausible continuation is 7...Qe7+ 8.Qe2 Qxe2+ 9.Kxe2 Nf6 10.Re1 0-0 11.Nc3 Re8+ 12.Kf1 Rxe1+ 13.Nxe1 Be6=] 8.0-0 0-0 9.Re1 [9.Nc3=] 9...Qd6 [9...Qb6!?=/+ aims at the vulnerable f2.] 10.Nc3? [White misses that his f2 pawn is pinned. He could break the pin with 10.Be3=] 10...Qg3!? [This fun move is why the game caught my attention. Stronger would be first 10...Bxh3! 11.gxh3 Qg3+ 12.Kh1 Bxf2 13.Bf1 Nd4-+ and White is crushed by force.] 11.Rf1? [Black is rewarded for his boldness. His queen would have to retreat after 11.Be3 Bxe3 12.Rxe3 Qc7=] 11...Bxh3! 12.Bxh7+ [White would have to give up the queen to stop checkmate. 12.Ne1 Ng4 13.Qxg4 Bxg4 14.Nxd5 Qe5-+] 12...Nxh7 13.Qxd5 Qxg2# 0-1

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