All modern field layouts are mirrored (each half end to middle is identical) but few are symmetrical (each half wire to mid-line is identical) and the fact the Paris-Chantilly layout is also symmetrical gives it some unique characteristics. Without a defined snake wire and/or dorito wire the expected tendency is for teams to play strong-side (the commitment of 3 or more players to one side or the other) toward their natural hand dominance. This means the strong-side will most often be to the right hand side of the field and since that is reversed for each team the match-ups will be strong-side versus weak-side (3 on 2) for each team unless a team intentionally chooses to break the pattern. [If you find yourself losing the simplest way to alter the pattern is to match strong versus strong.]
While this layout follows the recent pattern of opening up the shooting lanes (especially the wide lanes) OTB it offers a nice counterbalance with more primary options than usual. On diagram A the basic lanes are in blue. Lane 1 is the perfect lane but odds are even your best laner isn't going to be able to get a consistent lane up fast enough to make that your basic OTB lane. (It can be effective however if your opponent routinely edges or holds a shooter back who later makes a delayed move to their primary.) Lanes 2 & 3 are both solid but now consideration must be given to what primaries you are attempting to deny. For example if you're shooting for a corner runner it becomes possible to dive under those lanes of paint further upfield. Take note of the purple lane. It is not passing through a blocking Pin, it is passing over that Pin. This is the ideal OTB lane for most situations if you have a player who can shoot it as it requires a taller than average player (or some modifying field condition.) But even if the shooter's vision is obstructed this is a lane worth looking at because it catches deep runners before their paths diverge and any diagonal upfield runners before they begin their dive and the blocking Pin placement is such that any taller player can easily shoot over it and downfield effectively.
The blue and green highlighted bunkers form the foundation of the basic breakout--at least I expect they will. The blue Home bunker can be played either direction as all the shots are identical. And either green T (aztec) can play the cross so that between them a strong effort is made to deny rotation into the the snake and to contest any snake player.
Now let's revisit the idea of the strong-side and the weakside. Normally the side the Home shooter is playing would be considered the strong-side. (Two players breakout each direction and the Home shooter becomes the odd number.) But given the cross works from both sides it becomes possible to both disguise and shift the strong-side to either balance the field or press an advantage. The trick to making this fundamentally defensive set-up work is the mid-game transition to offense when either the Home player moves making a commitment to one side of the field or green T gives up the cross and commits to playing the wire. And this mid-game shift requires solid and consistent communication otherwise players will hesitate to act and/or be unprepared.
To close out today's post take a look a the red highlighted corner taking particular notice of the wrapping shots. An uncontested (unmatched) corner powers any effort to push that same wire and should be a focus both offensively and defensively. In part 2 we'll breakdown working toward the wire without a corner and the secret to taking command of a point right from the break.