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There is an opponent who I know will play this opening as black every time, whether I start with e4, d4, or pretty much anything else. What first two moves can I play to make this very bad for black, and how can I continue from there? I want to avoid the standard Caro-Kann, because that is what he is hoping for and he knows it very well.
You can spice up his pawn structure by learning the Panov-Botvinnik attack:
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4
Worth a shot. The Caro-Kann (or Slav vs d4) is perfectly sound.
Or you can try 1 c4 c6 2 e4, as I have often done (to get something less bookish).
1.d4 with 2.d5 refutes 1...c6 2...d5
Thank you DrSpudnik, I may try that. How about:
1. e4 c6 2. c4 d5 3. cxd5 cxd5 4. exd5 Qxd5
That forces his queen out early for the second recapture, but leaves my d-pawn behind; is it any better?
That's a reasonable side-step into the Panov-Botvinnik
But they may play 2...e5 so be ready for that one.
There's always Blackmar-diemer-ish fun with the Mieses gambit (3.Be3!?)
Set up for f3 + Nd2 followed by O-O, Qe1 with ideas of Qh4 and the usual "mate the bastard" tactics.
Doesn't work so well for me against stronger players but I've had plenty of scalps at the lower class levels with this ... it is quite potent at blitz as well.
Update: Of course, when it is time to grow up ... learn the exchange + Panov system, understand how to play with the typical Panov pawn structures (IQP) ... and refute your opponent's opening by simply playing better chess. ;)
Looks like you should be thanking me.
Yes, thanks to you too, since I didn't realize you had posted the same thing as me with a different move order.
(Dang, Shivsky is Snively no longer.)
Shivsky, your idea looks interesting and I looked at it on a board, but it seems to be way beyond my level and I am also not familiar with Blackmar-diemer or the Panov system.
Yup. I got hooked on Venture Bros. recently and was positively smitten by the Monarch.
Well give this article by McGrew a read (http://www.chesscafe.com/text/mcgrew34.pdf) and see if it might be fun for you. It adopts a nearly identical system (to the Mieses) against the French and shows you the general ideas of what to do.
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12/11/2013 - Topalov-Kramnik, Dortmund 1996
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Sorry for a newbie post.
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