Latest Updates:
Normal Topic C00-C19: Play the French (2nd Edition) (Read 2898 times)
Andrew Brett

Re: Play the French (2nd Edition)
Reply #5 - 11/23/05 at 10:49:43
Post Tools
I have to say that the Poisoned pawn looks theoretically doubtful in both Qxc3 and Nxc3 - there has been quite a few complex correspondence games showing this ...........but in practice it can be very difficult for white to negotiate an explosion in the centre.

Watson is a bit optimistic on the Black side. Psakhis is more realistic. I take my cue from the GMs- 0-0 is the move.

Still Watson's analysis is always worth looking at, although again I think he is over optimistic on the Qb6 French Tarrash.

Andrew Cheesy Smiley
Back to top
IP Logged
Junior Member

I love!

Posts: 98
Location: USA
Joined: 01/18/03
Re: Play the French (2nd Edition)
Reply #4 - 11/21/05 at 23:58:48
Post Tools
I was a little disappointed with Watson's Play the French 3. I was looking forward to seeing the poision pawn variation myself. I do have the Pshakis, but he pretty much is telling us french players that the poision pawn is in trouble for black. Qxp and Nxc3 looks bad for black, and it does not seem chess pub has even given any help either. There is like one or two main games in both those lines, that it seems everyone refers too, and thats it.

What I like about Watson is that he seems to really try to give the reader a way to play, and I feel he has pride in the french like all us other french players. So when I did not see the poision pawn, i felt empty, lol.

I really like 2 actually. Felt it was the best of the bunch. But I do have to say, I am looking into the classical lines that he gave in 3, I thought that was good of him to put that in the book.
Back to top
IP Logged
YaBB Moderator

Posts: 908
Location: Toulouse
Joined: 01/11/03
Gender: Male
Re: Play the French (2nd Edition)
Reply #3 - 11/20/05 at 04:35:42
Post Tools
I have only #2 and #3 thus I can't compare with #1.
In #3 Watson gives only the oo-Winawer system and gives reference to **excellent** book Franzoesich Winawer Kindermann-Dirr.
For the poisoned-pawn system, you can buy Watson's book #2 but better is to buy "French Defence 3.Nc3 Bb4" 2003 -Psakhis - Batsford - ISBN 0713488417, giving same coverage as Watson #2, but with other systems for White (exchange Winawer: exd5 ; 4.Ne2 and so on). Chesspublishing gives interesting information (in the updates and the forum).


About the Exchange and c4, I now play Bb4+ and a system based on a quick Nf6-oo. I worked it because one of my club fellow plays the line versus French. Open a thread and I'll post some lines.

“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can never live long enough to make them all yourself.”  - Groucho Marx
Back to top
IP Logged
Full Member

Chess nuts boasting in
an open foyer

Posts: 100
Location: Tok
Joined: 06/27/05
Re: Play the French (2nd Edition)
Reply #2 - 11/20/05 at 03:19:15
Post Tools
I DO NOT have the (2nd Edition) but it is worth getting hold of this or do you have any other suggested books ? Also, is the (2nd Edition) the same as the (New Edition - 1996) or was that the first edition - confused?

I have all three editions.  The second one--1996--is good to have; the first one--1984--not so much. 

I myself particularly like the second edition because of its coverage of 1. e4 e6, 2. d4 d5, 3. Nd2 Nf6, 4. e5, which isn't covered in the third edition.  Of course, it's a bit out of date, but I like his ideas and presentation so much better than, say, Pshakis, that I use the Pshakis to annotate my Watson with the more current stuff. 

There's lots of other ideas in #2 that aren't in #3.  In fact, if you're reading through #3, Watson seems to assume you already have #2.  He's always saying, "Or another perfectly good line is XXX, which I cover in the second edition."  It's enormously satisfying to open up the second edition to see what the heck he's talking about.

Back to top
IP Logged
God Member

Posts: 528
Joined: 01/31/03
Re: Play the French (2nd Edition)
Reply #1 - 11/19/05 at 08:09:24
Post Tools
Hi, welcome to the forum!!  Smiley

a) With regards to "Play the French", 3rd edition, I have to say that I like it very much. Although I don`t play the winawer anymore or the 0-0 lines vs. the Tarrasch as he suggests,  I am nevertheless quite happy with it as I`ve picked up and continue to pick up useful ideas from it and find that the coverage of other lines are good.  I am not familiar with the previous books in the series so cannot advice you on their contents. I know John Watson has essayed the view that the Poisoned Pawn variations are ok for black, but I also know that Nigel Short disagrees with him! I am not sure where you can find a good coverage of the PPv, but a good start might be to check out the games here in the french section and check the week in chess for new games.  Maybe somone else can direct you in better directions.

b) Since you already have John Watson`s play the French, check out what he suggests against 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. ed ed 4. c4. It is definitely not the best choice to take on c4 immediately as you probably want to save that for later, when white already has moved his white-squared bishop. In this way you`ll save a move. So go with 4..Bb4+ and follow up with Ne7. After white decides do move his white-squared bishop you can contemplate taking on c4. In general I`d say that you don`t need to be afraid of 4.c4, but you need to check it out.  Go through the lines that PTF gives.

Again, welcome to the forum! Always glad to see new posts from new members!


There just isn't enough televised chess - DAVID LETTERMAN
Back to top
IP Logged
YaBB Newbies

If you don't shoot, you
won't score!

Posts: 21
Location: Newcastle
Joined: 11/19/05
C00-C19: Play the French (2nd Edition)
11/19/05 at 07:13:24
Post Tools
Hi! Everybody - newbie here.

Must say, what a fascinating forum this is for French defence lovers. Anyway, just two small things I would like some opinions on :-

a) Having purchased Play "The French (3rd edition) - John Watson", I was a bit cheesed off with the non-existant coverage on the French Winawer - Poisoned Pawn variations, otherwise it's a great book. I DO NOT have the (2nd Edition) but it is worth getting hold of this or do you have any other suggested books ? Also, is the (2nd Edition) the same as the (New Edition - 1996) or was that the first edition - confused?

b) From Black's point of view, how best do you deal with 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. ed ed 4. c4(!? or ?!), is it better to take or play 4. ... Bb4+. Its an abolute nuisance for me (or is it?)
« Last Edit: 08/02/11 at 20:08:29 by dom »  
Back to top
IP Logged
Bookmarks: Digg Facebook Google Google+ Linked in reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Yahoo