Playing the McCutcheon Variation of the French Defence (3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Bb4) immediately sharpens up the game, but quite frequently what soon arises is a positional struggle. Until recently the whole opening system was considered to be double-edged, if not downright notorious – White only had to have good knowledge about the main line. But nowadays the McCutcheon has been developing in an entirely new direction. Rustam Kasimdzhanov now calls 5.e5 h6 6.Bd2 the old main variation – since, as he demonstrates, Black can remarkably easily obtain a pleasant game. The alternatives 6.Bc1 and 6.Bh4 shouldn’t give White any advantage either, but the former FIDE world champion shows how these lines can be used as a surprise weapon. On the other hand, 6.Be3 has turned into the new main variation. Here the author has undertaken some extremely deep analysis in order to be able to come up with the correct evaluations for the individual sub-variations. In many variations Kasimdzhanov provides analyses, evaluations and recommendations which go far beyond the present state of theory. Despite that, you always retain a good overview and the clarity of the explanations make the study of this DVD a real pleasure.

• Video running time: 4 hours 42 minutes
• With interactive training including video feedback
• Full analysis of the variation by Kasimdzhanov
• Exclusive database with 78 Grandmaster games
• Including CB 12 Reader


This is what is delivered:

  • Fritztrainer App for Windows and Mac
  • Available as download or on DVD
  • Video course with a running time of approx. 4-8 hrs.
  • Repertoire database: save and integrate Fritztrainer games into your own repertoire (in WebApp Opening or in ChessBase)
  • Interactive exercises with video feedback: the authors present exercises and key positions, the user has to enter the solution. With video feedback (also on mistakes) and further explanations.
  • Sample games as a ChessBase database.
  • New: many Fritztrainer now also available as stream in the ChessBase video portal!

That's what the FritzTrainer App can do for you:

  • Videos can run in the Fritztrainer app or in the ChessBase program with board graphics, notation and a large function bar
  • Analysis engine can be switched on at any time
  • Video pause for manual navigation and analysis in game notation
  • Input of your own variations, engine analysis, with storage in the game
  • Learn variations: view specific lines in the ChessBase WebApp Opening with autoplay, memorize variations and practise transformation (initial position - final position).
  • Active opening training: selected opening positions are transferred to the ChessBase WebApp Fritz-online. In a match against Fritz you test your new knowledge and actively play the new opening.

Even more possibilities: Start FritzTrainer in the ChessBase program!

  • The database with all games and analyses can be opened directly.
  • Games can be easily added to the opening reference.
  • Direct evaluation with game reference, games can be replayed on the analysis board
  • Your own variations are saved and can be added to the own repertoire
  • Replay training
  • LiveBook active
  • All engines installed in ChessBase can be started for the analysis
  • Assisted Analysis
  • Print notation and diagrams (for worksheets)

Sample video


  • The new McCutcheon: 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Bb4 5.e5 h6
  • Databases: Games; Full Analysis
  • 01: Introduction [07:38]
  • 02: Side line 5.exd5 exd5 6.Qf3 Qe7 7.Nge2/Be2 - Video analysis [11:13]
  • 03: 5.e5 h6 6.exf6 hxg5 7.fxg7 Rg8 8.h4/a3/Qh5 - Video analysis [11:40]
  • Chapter 1: 6.Bh4
  • 04: 6...g5 7.Bg3 Ne4 8.Nge2 h5 - Video analysis [14:06]
  • 05: 6...g5 7.Bg3 Ne4 8.Nge2 c5 Part 1 - Video analysis [08:31]
  • 06: 6...g5 7.Bg3 Ne4 8.Nge2 c5 Part 2 - Video analysis [12:03]
  • Chapter 2: 6.Bd2
  • 07: 6...Bxc3 7.Bxc3 - Video analysis [11:21]
  • 08: 6...Bxc3 7.bxc3 Ne4 8.Qg4 Kf8 9.Qf4 - Video analysis [13:06]
  • 09: 6...Bxc3 7.bxc3 Ne4 8.Qg4 Kf8 9.Bd3 Nxd2 10.Kxd2 - Video analysis [10:52]
  • Chapter 3: 6.Bc1
  • 10: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 Kf8 - Video analysis [10:25]
  • 11: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 g6 8.a3 - Video analysis [08:41]
  • 12: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 g6 8.Nge2 Part 1 - Video analysis [12:58]
  • 13: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 g6 8.Nge2 Part 2 - Video analysis [14:36]
  • Chapter 4: 6.Be3
  • 14: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 Kf8 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 Nxc3 10.Bd3 c5 Part 1 - Video analysis [11:03]
  • 15: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 Kf8 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 Nxc3 10.Bd3 c5 Part 2 - Video analysis [11:30]
  • 16: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 Kf8 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 Nxc3 10.Bd3 c5 Part 3 - Video analysis [13:24]
  • 17: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 Kf8 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 Nxc3 10.Bd3 Nc6 - Video analysis [08:32]
  • 18: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 g6 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 Nxc3 - Video analysis [12:15]
  • 19: 6...Ne4 7.Qg4 g6 8.a3 Bxc3 9.bxc3 c5 - Video analysis [09:11]
  • 20: Summary of the theoretical part - Wrap-up [06:35]
  • Chapter 5: Instructive games
  • 21: Steinitz,W - McCutcheon,J [07:35]
  • 22: Fischer,R - Petrosian,T [10:29]
  • 23: Petrosian,T - Volkov,S [11:08]
  • 24: Kasimdzhanov,R - Smerdon,D [10:30]
  • Test positions
  • 25: Position 1 [01:38]
  • 26: Position 2 [01:46]
  • 27: Position 3 [01:28]
  • 28: Position 4 [02:34]
  • 29: Position 5 [01:42]
  • 30: Position 6 [02:16]
  • 31: Position 7 [01:49]
  • 32: Position 8 [02:12]
  • 33: Position 9 [02:07]
  • 34: Position 10 [01:56]
  • 35: Position 11 [02:01]
  • 36: Position 12 [02:08]

French Defence

When Black replies to the double move of White’s king’s pawn with 1...e6 we have the French Defence. Its name goes back to a correspondence match between the cities of London and Paris in 1834, in which the French made successful use of the move 1...e6. In the 19th century the move was the most important alternative for Black to 1...e5 and even nowadays it still occupies third place in the ranking of the most popular replies to 1.e4 after the Sicilian and 1...e5.

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