PRACTICAL CHESS ENDGAME or BRIAN'S CHESS FOLLY . 3/5/98


Welcome to this active site.Each week I am going to present to you a endgame position for you to solve or to workout the best continuation. Computer analysis will also be considered. Some of these positions will come from actual historical games. Others will be composed endgame studies,but all the solutions will be relevant to the practical game.

The new position will occur each SUNDAY and I will always be pleased to receive POSITIVE feedback about the positions and the analysis and I will try to acknowledge these where relevant.


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Summer Solving Tournament starting in July and lasting for six weeks. Positions to solve on long holiday journeys or when sunbathing on the beach !!


THIS WEEK

POSITION 37

Black to Play & WIN

 

  FORSYTH NOTATION:6k1/1pq3p1/pn1Q1p2/4pP1p/8/2P5/2P3P1/1K1R4: 


LAST WEEK, POSITION 36

Endings with Queen against Rook and pawn have a reputation of being some of the hardest to play. The famous french player Philidor started analysing these endings in 1777 and his work was carried on in 1868 by Guretzky-Cornitz.

Some of this early analysis was later found to be incorrect and even more recent analysis by famous theoreticians has not been without mistakes. In 1928 Professor Orrin Frink (b.1901 ) head of the department of mathematics at Penn State University composed an endgame study with this material which illustrates some of the fore mentioned difficulties.

 Orrin Frink, 1928

White to Play and DRAW

 

FORSYTH NOTATION:7R/6K1/8/3qkP2/32:

 

Professor Frink originally presented this study with the Black King at d4. This was a very unfortunate choice because it allowed the unintended theoretical draw 1.Rd8! Qxd8 and we arrive at a rare position where the f-pawn played to the sixth rank will draw. White because of the position of his pieces cannot stop Black playing the pawn to f6 and then f7 to reach the famous drawn position where the f7 pawn can never be taken because of the stalemate trap with the White King at h8.

Amazingly Averbakh in Comprehensive Chess Endings 2nd edition Vol 3 p179 gives the original position with colours reversed and fails to mention this easy draw. In 1956 Cheron restored the study to its full glory by placing the King at e5 thus eliminating the second solution and so we have the above corrected position with White to play. 

1.Rf8!

This is the only move to draw.

1.Rh5? Qg2+ 2.Kh6 (2.Kf7 Qg4 -+) 2...Kf6 -+;

1.f6? Qg2+ 2.Kf7 Qb7+ 3.Kg6 Qe4+ 4.Kf7 Qc4+ 5.Kg6 Qg4+ 6.Kf7 Qe6+ and White will be mated.

1...Qg2+

Playing the King is no better. 1...Kf4 2.Rf7 Kg5 3.Rf8 Qe5+ 4.Kh7 Qe7+ 5.Kg8 Kh6 looks critical for White but he has a nice stalemate defence with 6.Rf6+! Qxf6 =

2.Kh7 Qg5

3.Kh8 Qh6+

4.Kg8 Kd5

The king is heading for e7.

5.Rf7! Kd6

Guretzky-Cornitz (1864) thought this position was lost because of 6.Rf8 Qg5+ 7.Kh7 Ke7 winning, but Professor Frink makes an important discovery and finds a better defence for White.

6.Rg7!!

This new move stops the Black King from crossing the 7th rank.

6...Qh4

7.Rf7!

...again this is the only move to draw.

7...Qd8+

8.Kg7

8.Rf8 loses to Qg5+

8...Qe8

9.Rf6+ Kd5

10.Rf7=

A positional draw. Black cannot make any progress.

If you find yourself defending these type of endings you have good drawing chances but you have to know the basic positions. Trying to solve endgame studies is a better way to assimilate the material rather than trying to learn from a dry textbook.

Recently analysing these basic endings has become a lot easier with the help of endgame databases. It is good practise to set up these basic endgame positions and play against the computer knowing that it will play the optimum moves providing it has access to the endgame databases. The computer becomes an important teaching tool indicating where you could have improved your play. You could try this with the above position. Set the position up and play the Black side and then change sides. See if you can find the best moves. Learning is more fun this way. You will also see that the moves chosen by Professor Frink are the optimum moves which is quite an achievement considering he didn't have the help of a silicon friend.


28/4/98

Position 35

21/4/98

Position 34

05/4/98

Position 33

29/3/98

Position 32

22/3/98

Position 31

15/3/98

Position 30

8/3/98

Position 29

1/3/98

Position 28

22/2/98

Position 27

15/2/98

Position 26

8/2/98

Position 25

1/2/98

Position 24

25/1/98

Position 23

18/1/98

Position 22

11/1/98

Position 21

4/1/98

Position 20

28/12/97

Position 19

21/12/97

Position 18

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