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A fairly smooth win with the French Defence, showing the importance of the light-square bishop

lichess.org/tKuomORj/black#0

By 3...c5 we have the Advance French Defence, which is my opinion quite a comfortable opening for Black. However, White now makes two errors: 4. Bb5?! and 5. Bxc6+?!. It's really not a good idea for White to trade off the light-square bishop for a knight in this structure. After 6. Be3, which should perhaps have been Nf3, the engine suggests that my plan should be ...cxd4 B/Qxd4 c5, and I agree with this: that way I can stop the c-pawn being backward.

By the time we get to 9. Nf3, White is ready to castle -- but now we see the strength of my light-square bishop, which posts to A6 with a lovely diagonal separating the king and rook. White immediately cracks under the pressure with 10. Qd4?, losing at least a pawn. His best plan was probably Nc3 -> Qd2 -> 0-0-0, castling queenside. I should just take the pawn with 10... Qxc2, but I was yearning for a miniature so I went with Qb5?!, threatening immediate checkmate on E2. Now, the engine suggests a nice pawn sacrifice 11. c4!, but White settled for the human Nc3.

Again, White played a natural move: 12. Rb1?, saving his rook but losing another pawn. However, there is a great engine move Qc5! which very skilfully exploits my backward c-pawn to threaten a perpetual check, and it tries to employ this idea on the next move as well. In the game I could definitely have exchanged queens with 13...Qxd2+, being two pawns up, but instead I retreated to the flank (not seeing that 14. Qg5 forces the exchange anyway.) Luckily White played Rg1?! instead, permanently losing his kingside castling rights.

After 15..Nd4?! I was able to positively dash with the passed pawns: c5, d4, and d3 all came with tempo. White also didn't relocate his knights to the best spots (A4, B5). However, I failed to see the powerful 17...Qe4+!, which concretely wins material after 18. Kd1 d3, due to the hanging knight on A4. From 20...Nd5 to 26. Qxc3 seems basically forcing, after which we can see that White will have to sacrifice rook for bishop if he's to win the single remaining pawn.

After 33. Kxg1 I sadly failed to give the game its worthy end: ...e1=Q+ Kg1 Qf1#, carrying the influence of the light-square bishop to its logical conclusion.

4 Bb5 and 5 Bxc6 is no good idea indeed. You punished this well.

The importance of the light-squared bishop... in the French Defence. The irony of it all.

Bad bishops are often surprisingly good. Bc8 in the French and in the Dutch, Bg7 in the bayonet variation of the King's Indian.

@pn2206 Not an irony, it's just the dogmatic people who are the loudest.
You often cannot push ...f6 properly without a Bishop on d7, for example. It's an important defensive piece.

Your opponent was mad for taking on c6 and also on c5 lol. Nice use of that light squared bishop.

I also wish you had queened lol

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