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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Ready to give up on 1...e5 (Read 18480 times)
smrex13
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #36 - 04/29/08 at 03:55:34
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As I've read the comments in this thread (that I started), I've come to agree with the post below.  As much as I hate to admit it, my dislike of 1...e5 truly comes from an inability to handle the positions well (rather than a genuine preference for closed positions).  This thread has inspired me to stick with 1...e5.  Today I lost three games horribly to the Ponziani in blitz (out of book after mover 4 - 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.c3 Nf6 4.Bb5). In the past, I would take this as evidence that I prefer closed games.  However, I now admit that these losses mean that I need to spend more time with open games.  Maybe I'll even take up the Two Knights...

Thanks - it feels good to confess Smiley
Scott

p.s.  Now, if I could just figure out what to do against 1.d4 d5...

>>So I regard some of the statements here about how dicey and unsettling open positions are as evidence of a serious gap in the games of the persons making these statements -- notwithstanding that these may be more talented players than I am (and that there are no doubt very serious gaps in my own game).

I'll go further and say that the black side of the Two Knights is in some ways the Philosopher's Stone of chess.  If you can play it well, you will probably make a good chess player. [/quote]
  

"Behind every beautiful thing there's been some kind of pain"  - Bob Dylan
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #35 - 04/28/08 at 15:17:19
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Ointment for ails.


Markovich wrote on 04/28/08 at 12:48:21:

I'll go further and say that the black side of the Two Knights is in some ways the Philosopher's Stone of chess.  If you can play it well, you will probably make a good chess player.



Excellent point.
  

I know I've made some very poor decisions recently, but I can give you my complete assurance that my work will be back to normal. I've still got the greatest enthusiasm and confidence in the mission.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #34 - 04/28/08 at 12:48:21
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Willempie wrote on 04/28/08 at 11:38:55:
Stigma wrote on 04/27/08 at 00:11:31:
I don't mind having the initiative at any stage, rather I dislike the concessions one often has to make in initative-based, "fast" openings like the Open Games. I mean positional concessions and also to some extent material sacrifice, and tactical weaknesses that need constant monitoring. For example, I tried the Sveshnikov as a junior and did poorly with it, knowing that I was under pressure to find accurate, dynamic moves all the time to justify my loose pawn structure.

In the typical game that I win I first outplay my opponent through better opening knowledge or understanding (OK, sometimes I have to wait for the middlegame before they do something wrong), and eventually I often get an initiative/attack without making any concessions. It just isn't tempting to start taking risks in open positions against the typical amateur hackers, when I know I am likely to beat them with something semi-open where their lack of understanding will show...

Right now I am happy with the Sicilian and the French, but I read in Davies' 1.e4 e5 book that his switch to 1...e5 as Black (on the recommendation of Psakhis?) helped him finally rise to the GM level. If I am ever in the same situation, I promise to give 1...e5 a fair hearing.  Wink

To me the big difference between 1..e5 and a french or even a sicilian is that with those white and black are often playing different games, with white often busy on the kingside (often with a safe centre) and black elsewhere. With 1..e5 such an approach by black is suicide: you have to battle in the centre and be busy on the kingside as well.


I don't know about the kingside necessarily, but I take your point.  You certainly have to battle in the center.  The upside is that if White plays an inefficient move, you become White.

In so many of the semi-open systems, an inefficient move by White means only that Black's equality comes a little more easily.

I just don't see how anyone can play chess well if he can't play open positions well.  The reason is that the very best thing that you can do in many closed or half-open positions is to open the position on favorable terms (or at least, it's critically important to know whether any given opening of the position is favorable or unfavorable). If you can't judge well what your chances are in any given open position, and don't have a good idea what to do in it, how can you play chess at all?  So I regard some of the statements here about how dicey and unsettling open positions are as evidence of a serious gap in the games of the persons making these statements -- notwithstanding that these may be more talented players than I am (and that there are no doubt very serious gaps in my own game).

I'll go further and say that the black side of the Two Knights is in some ways the Philosopher's Stone of chess.  If you can play it well, you will probably make a good chess player.
  

The Great Oz has spoken!
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #33 - 04/28/08 at 11:38:55
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Stigma wrote on 04/27/08 at 00:11:31:
I don't mind having the initiative at any stage, rather I dislike the concessions one often has to make in initative-based, "fast" openings like the Open Games. I mean positional concessions and also to some extent material sacrifice, and tactical weaknesses that need constant monitoring. For example, I tried the Sveshnikov as a junior and did poorly with it, knowing that I was under pressure to find accurate, dynamic moves all the time to justify my loose pawn structure.

In the typical game that I win I first outplay my opponent through better opening knowledge or understanding (OK, sometimes I have to wait for the middlegame before they do something wrong), and eventually I often get an initiative/attack without making any concessions. It just isn't tempting to start taking risks in open positions against the typical amateur hackers, when I know I am likely to beat them with something semi-open where their lack of understanding will show...

Right now I am happy with the Sicilian and the French, but I read in Davies' 1.e4 e5 book that his switch to 1...e5 as Black (on the recommendation of Psakhis?) helped him finally rise to the GM level. If I am ever in the same situation, I promise to give 1...e5 a fair hearing.  Wink

To me the big difference between 1..e5 and a french or even a sicilian is that with those white and black are often playing different games, with white often busy on the kingside (often with a safe centre) and black elsewhere. With 1..e5 such an approach by black is suicide: you have to battle in the centre and be busy on the kingside as well.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #32 - 04/27/08 at 00:11:31
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MNb wrote on 04/26/08 at 15:18:30:
I am under the impression that Scott and Stigma are afraid to take the initiative at an early stage. Is that right?


I don't mind having the initiative at any stage, rather I dislike the concessions one often has to make in initative-based, "fast" openings like the Open Games. I mean positional concessions and also to some extent material sacrifice, and tactical weaknesses that need constant monitoring. For example, I tried the Sveshnikov as a junior and did poorly with it, knowing that I was under pressure to find accurate, dynamic moves all the time to justify my loose pawn structure.

In the typical game that I win I first outplay my opponent through better opening knowledge or understanding (OK, sometimes I have to wait for the middlegame before they do something wrong), and eventually I often get an initiative/attack without making any concessions. It just isn't tempting to start taking risks in open positions against the typical amateur hackers, when I know I am likely to beat them with something semi-open where their lack of understanding will show...

Right now I am happy with the Sicilian and the French, but I read in Davies' 1.e4 e5 book that his switch to 1...e5 as Black (on the recommendation of Psakhis?) helped him finally rise to the GM level. If I am ever in the same situation, I promise to give 1...e5 a fair hearing.  Wink
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #31 - 04/26/08 at 15:18:30
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Willempie wrote on 04/26/08 at 08:42:53:
Well the tactics in e4e5 openings if anything are more stereotyped, it is just that there are more lines and they start earlier (with a Sozin you are already art move 7 or 8 before the fun begins). The tactics which can arise are easy to train, though of course not always easy on the board. The main problem with e4e5 is that black players often "just develop" and then get crushed.


I completely agree. Against all those non-Ruy Lopez openings Black must play as active as possible. If you can play a piece to a better square or inflict a serious weakness, do it, even at the cost of development. The general rule is that you can give up a tempo if you force the opponent to give up one at least as well.
I am under the impression that Scott and Stigma are afraid to take the initiative at an early stage. Is that right?
  

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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #30 - 04/26/08 at 10:21:41
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smrex13 wrote on 04/22/08 at 01:42:08:
Hi everyone,

I hope that this message find you all well.  I have been playing 1...e5 in response to 1.e4 for about a year now.  I was motivated by the number of talented players (far more talented than I) who claimed that chess player should play 1...e5 for several years. 

I have to say, though, that I'm really getting discouraged.  I love the closed Lopez, and I've had some very rewarding victories (and losses) in this opening.  For me, it's the reason to play chess.  Nevertheless, I have to play hundreds of games in the Guioco Piano, King's Gambit, Center Game, etc. to play even one Lopez.  My opponents have spent thousands of hours honing their opening traps.  Of course, they play 'unsound' openings, but they are openings that can't be found in any opening book.  So, my chess study is nothing but endless memorization of opening lines, trying to stay on the board.

I don't have any trouble playing other openings.  In fact, I have a very good record in main line Najdorfs, Winawers, Panovs, etc.  So, I'm not sure how to proceed.  Do I just spend all my chess time memorizing obscure lines, or do I play the French, Caro, or Sicilian, and use my chess intuition and skill to gain rating points.?  Obviously, players like Nigel Short play world class chess with lines like the QGD, so a classical opening repertoire should be the goal of anyone at my level. 

I'm just amazed at the number of "bad" lines that can destroy Black out of the opening in "sound, classical" lines.

Please help!
Scott

Scott


I'm not much of a 1...e5 player myself - a few years ago I tried out Kaufman's Berlin repertoire, mostly in blitz, and when I ran into these guys who played instantly for the first 10-15 moves (various d4 gambits, Evans Gambit, Belgrade etc) I had more than the occasional disaster. Black is OK of course, but only if he knows a lot of stuff by heart - and at least in blitz, white can improvise quite easily, getting you out of book. And books and people often over estimate black's being OK into more than that, which might be true if Fritz or Rybka etc were playing black, but in practice I've noticed that - "and white has not enough for his pawn/damaged structure/missing bishop pair" etc, - doesn't help me much when I'm forced to play defensively for the first 25-30 moves...

I later moved on to the Philidor, which removed a lot of the trickier gambits as well as the boredom of the 4Knights - but since you'd like to play the Ruy 2...d6 won't help you much.

However, have you considered 1...Nc6 ? I've been trying this in blitz a lot myself - the most common is 1.e4 Nc6 2.Nf3 and then you'd play 2...e5 of course. (Personally, I like Miles' 2-d6, Nf6 & Bg4 system, but that's another matter..) My experience is that after 2...e5 white for some reason usually either goes for the Ruy or the Scotch.

And btw, after 3.Bc4 there's no law that forces you to play the main variations - you could e.g try the Hungarian Def, 3..Be7, which albeit a bit passive it gives either a closed position reminiscent of a Czech Benoni or something Philidorian if you exchange pawns on d4. In blitz it usually ends white's 'instant play', at least.


Maybe the Belgraders, etc usually prefer 2.d4 but after 2...e5 here too, you'd encounter 2...dxe5 and 2...d5 much more often than the various remaining d4-gambits - and in my exp most go for the Scotch or dxe5/d5 which are much easier to play without a lot of preparation.

Against other 2nd moves it helps if you're prepared to replace ...e5 with ...d5, as a good Scandinavian is a common panacea.  Smiley
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #29 - 04/26/08 at 08:42:53
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Stigma wrote on 04/25/08 at 21:04:16:
Willempie wrote on 04/24/08 at 06:59:14:
You mean you dont get that with the Nc3 advance in the CK, the Sozin in the sicilian or Qg4 in the French?


That's exactly what I mean, yes. Sure, White has plenty of attacking chances in both the Sozin and the Qg4 Winawer (I can't comment on the Nc3 Advance CK; never played it with either color), but I find that the tactics start somewhat later than in many of those open games (more time for my opponents to run out of theory and/or make some positional error). And somehow White's attacking schemes are more stereotyped and predictable in those openings; when I play 1.e4 e5 I feel like anything can go wrong, and quite suddenly. But I admit that the problem is a general dislike of open positions. Come to think of it, I'm not a big fan of 1.e4 e5 from the White side either...

So I conclude, again, that if I take up 1.e4 e5 as Black it might well do me a lot of good in the long term, but in the short term my results are likely to suffer.

Well the tactics in e4e5 openings if anything are more stereotyped, it is just that there are more lines and they start earlier (with a Sozin you are already art move 7 or 8 before the fun begins). The tactics which can arise are easy to train, though of course not always easy on the board. The main problem with e4e5 is that black players often "just develop" and then get crushed. I played numerous games where I just played the slow Giuoco and just won in less than 20 moves because he castled too quickly. However when black is familiar with things he shouldnt have any problem, which I have found out in the last couple of years (no youths as competition Wink). I think that the major advantage is that even if you dont play these openings later anymore after a couple of years the tactics and the fight for the iniitative will always return in whatever other opening you start playing.

In any case for some "safer" e4e5 role models, you can always check Sokolov and Karpov. I think for example that Karpov's games are interesting when white avoids the Ruy. He isnt a natural e4e5 player but he could always find a normal looking way to deal with surprises.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #28 - 04/26/08 at 04:21:49
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>> And somehow White's attacking schemes are more stereotyped and predictable in those openings; when I play 1.e4 e5 I feel like anything can go wrong, and quite suddenly.

I completely agree.  Even the sharpest openings (Najdorf, French Winawer, Nc3 Caro) are not nearly as difficult to handle as some of the sharp 1.e4 e5 lines.  I think the relative stability of the center in the semi-closed openings makes White's attacking plans more understandable.  The Qg4 Winawer, for example, tells Black exactly what he needs to watch out for - an attack against the Black king with several typical structures that are learnable.  On the other hand, in 1.e4 e5 lines, it's amazing how often a sudden threat arises from nothing in a sector of the board that seemed unimportant.  I think that's what attracts some players to the opening, but it's what frustrates me and sends me running back to the French or Sicilian.

Scott
  

"Behind every beautiful thing there's been some kind of pain"  - Bob Dylan
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #27 - 04/25/08 at 21:32:35
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fluffy wrote on 04/22/08 at 03:00:54:
I would play 1...e5 every game if there was no Ruy Lopez! Just learn the junk, whether with Emms, Kaufman, or Marin.


christoph63 wrote on 04/24/08 at 04:42:36:
Dont forget Davies Book "Play 1.e4 e5!".
It covers that stuff to.


... and don't forget Survive and beat annoying chess openings, by Schiller and Watson, either (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Survive-Beat-Annoying-Chess-Openings/dp/1580420737/ref=s...)

(Don't get scared by "Schiller", focus on "Watson" instead).

This contains a lot of good stuff, and its focus is on the "not so common" lines. Note that even if the title does not indicate it, this book is only about 1. e4 e5 openings.
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #26 - 04/25/08 at 21:04:16
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Willempie wrote on 04/24/08 at 06:59:14:
You mean you dont get that with the Nc3 advance in the CK, the Sozin in the sicilian or Qg4 in the French?


That's exactly what I mean, yes. Sure, White has plenty of attacking chances in both the Sozin and the Qg4 Winawer (I can't comment on the Nc3 Advance CK; never played it with either color), but I find that the tactics start somewhat later than in many of those open games (more time for my opponents to run out of theory and/or make some positional error). And somehow White's attacking schemes are more stereotyped and predictable in those openings; when I play 1.e4 e5 I feel like anything can go wrong, and quite suddenly. But I admit that the problem is a general dislike of open positions. Come to think of it, I'm not a big fan of 1.e4 e5 from the White side either...

So I conclude, again, that if I take up 1.e4 e5 as Black it might well do me a lot of good in the long term, but in the short term my results are likely to suffer.
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #25 - 04/25/08 at 17:38:28
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Matemax wrote on 04/24/08 at 16:11:38:
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There are plenty of defences to the Ruy other than the Closed, though not many books available on them.

But lots of good stuff on 1.e4e5 chesspublishing - anyway enough material to build a repertoire either with white or black or even with both colours concering e4 - e5.


Krasenkow and, let me see, um..., Flear I think, have relatively recent books on the Open.  You still need to consult the updates for how to handle 9.Nbd2 and 9.Be3.
  

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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #24 - 04/24/08 at 16:11:38
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There are plenty of defences to the Ruy other than the Closed, though not many books available on them.

But lots of good stuff on 1.e4e5 chesspublishing - anyway enough material to build a repertoire either with white or black or even with both colours concering e4 - e5.
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #23 - 04/24/08 at 15:38:41
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I think the key is to gain more experience in, and understanding of, open positions as some others have said, rather than necessarily learning tons of theory.

I'm a 1500 patzer, I use 1...e5 as one of my two main responses to 1 e4, and find that many players adopt those tricky gambit lines, but often not based on much knowledge.    So if you just learn a quick defence against them, chances are you'll be no less prepared than they are.

I've dabbled in some of those tricky open gambits with White (particularly the Scotch-Danish-Goring complex) and always relish playing against them because I usually find that I know the resulting positions better than my opponents do.

There are plenty of defences to the Ruy other than the Closed, though not many books available on them.
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #22 - 04/24/08 at 12:44:38
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At the beginning of my chess career I played mostly 1...e5. But if one wants toplay this move he should study tons of theory. At least White can choose 3-4 different opening schemes. Then I switched to 1...c6 for a while but realised that this type of positions are not in my style. Then started to play the French. It worked very good for me bringing me alot of points, but the variations which I played has been sent to history recently. Thus I started to play Sicilian. During the years switched from Scheveningen to Paulsen, Sveshnikov, Najdorf. And finally I found myself  Smiley. The system that bests suits my style is Rauzer.
From the other hand playing with White against 1...e5 is also very hard task. How can White obtain even a small plus with good chances for complex play and win... Roll Eyes
So I think that the choice of the opening move (system) is upon the style of the player. First you should determine what kind of positions you like and then choice openings which can lead to these typical structures.

Regards
  
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