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Newbie
 
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2012 1:21 pm
Posts: 4
 Post subject: Advice on Black repertoire
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:26 am 
Hi all,

I'm new here and have a question on developing an opening repertoire.

Just a little about myself. I have been playing Chess for over 20 years. I mostly played for fun entering a tournament here and there. My rating was not good (about 1300). It wasn't until about 2 years ago though when I finally started to take Chess seriously. I have entered about 16 tournaments in that 2 years. In that two years, my rating has increased by 200 points.

My opening repertoire has jumped around quite a bit. I'm an older man (45) and really want to focus on one opening I can play for some time. I have played e4 openings, c4 openings, and d4 openings. I finally decided on 1. Nf3 following the repertoire in WOJO'S weapons and the Grandmaster Repertoire books by Boris Avrukh. I am having a lot of success starting with 1. Nf3. I like the positions and I get my opponent out of their opening book so we can start playing Chess and not playing moves we have memorized. This is serving me well since I can now focus on what I like to do from the beginning (look for weak pawns/squares, building up small advantages such as giving my opponent a bad Bishop vs my good Knight, etc.

I get much more satisfaction from building positional advantages than by winning due to a tactical shot. I do study tactics every day and have still improved a good deal in that area, but I would still rather slowly squeeze my opponents.

My question is that I'm not sure what to play as Black. There are many good defenses out there. I don't have much time to study openings that much. I want to focus most of my time on studying tactics and strategies from that opening. I want to become more familiar with middle game and endgame plans than my opponent as Black. I feel this is working for me as White. I want this to be my main opening though, so want to play something that has been proven at all levels of play.

In short, my opening style is positional. building up small advantages.
I want a Black repertoire that is also sound, but don't want to spend a lot of time on opening theory.
More important for me is understanding the middle game and endgame plans.
The opening should still be sound and reliable at all levels and still gives me room to outplay my opponents in the middle game and endgame.

I have a few thoughts and would like some opinions and suggestions.

Repertoire 1: The Caro-Kann classical paired with the Slav classical
Repertoire 2. The French Defense - Classical paired with the Queen's Gambit Declined - Lasker's
Repertoire 3: I suppose e5 is still one of the options - When I play e5 against e4, I follow the repertoire of Mihail Marin in his books from quality chess. The problem I have is that in the main line Ruy Lopez he recommends, I have trouble outplaying my opponent when we are out of book. I just always feel like I am playing for a draw all the time against the Ruy. It may be that this opening, although solid is not for me and I do spend quite a bit of time trying to memorize the lines instead of working on middle game and endgame plans.

Any suggestions for an opening repertoire for Black that would be reliable against all levels of play?


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Rook
 
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2003 9:35 pm
Posts: 93
 Post subject: Re: Advice on Black repertoire
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:45 am 
I haven't tried these but Soltis once recommended the Caro-Kann against 1.e4 and the Slav against 1.d4. They seem to be largely positional, but one can't always avoid tactics. I don't know what to play against flank or funny openings.


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