Chess Opening Theory/1. h4

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Desprez Opening
a b c d e f g h
8 a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8 8
7 a7 b7 c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7 7
6 a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6 6
5 a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5 5
4 a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4 4
3 a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2 2
1 a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1 1
a b c d e f g h
Position in Forsyth-Edwards Notation(FEN)


Moves: 1. h4
ECO code: A00
Parent: Starting position

1. h4 - Desprez Opening[edit]

The Desprez Opening is a rather useless move that does nothing to assist the important central squares. No top masters have ever used it in professional play, although some, most notably Hikaru Nakamura, play it during blitz. It could be said that White has made his position worse, as castling Kingside is now less attractive. As a result, this move is rarely seen among serious chess players.

Black's responses[edit]

Black has many decent replies.

  • 1... d5, staking a claim to the centre and simultaneously making 2. Rh3 impossible.

1... g6 is rarely played, as it makes 1. h4 seem logical as to undermining Black's fianchetto.


No statistics as 1. h4 is rarely played.

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  • Eric Schiller (2002). Unorthodox Chess Openings (Second Edition ed.). Cardoza. ISBN 1-58042-072-9.