PRACTICAL CHESS ENDGAME

*www.chessending.com*

Editor: Brian Gosling

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


The new position will appear at the beginning of each new month. You are invited to solve it. I will be pleased to receive feedback about the positions and the analysis. The solution will be published the following month with the new position. Some of these positions will come from actual historical games. Others will be composed endgame studies, but they will be relevant to the practical game. The site has over 400 chess endings and endgame studies and and has been running for over eight years.

A database of chess endings
Thanks to Antonio Senatore
THIS MONTH

POSITION 379

White to play and DRAW

FEN:2K5/2Pnk1P1/PP6/8/2b5/2n5/8/8 w - - 0 1:

 It is good training to try initially to solve the endings without the assistance of a chess playing programme.

Solution for the above, plus new position: 1st OCTOBER 2006.


LAST MONTH, POSITION 378

Reuben Fine, (1914-1993).

American Grandmaster. In the 30's and 40's he was among the top eight players in the world. He was Euwe's second in his World Championship match of 1937 against Alekhine. He wrote BASIC CHESS ENDINGS (1941, Revised by Benko 2003) which became a classic and for many years was the main endgame text and can still be read with profit today.

Green vs Fine

U.S. Champs 1940

Black to play and WIN

 

FEN:3r4/p1p3rk/1p3p1p/3PpP1b/1b2B3/1P1RBP1P/1P2K3/6R1 b - - 0 1:

It seems that Black wins this ending easily but White does have counter-chances. The Black Rook invades on the kingside and wins material. Black gives up the Rook for a Bishop. Can Black win the BvR ending with the extra pawns? According to Fine three pawns for the exchange means the side with the Bishop has good winning chances. This is a very complicated ending and may need further analysis. We follow the moves as played in the final stages of the game:

1... Rxg1

2.Bxg1 Rg8

3.Bf2 Be8!

With the nasty threat of pinning the Rook

4.Rd1 ...

4.Be1 Bc5 5.Rd2 Rg1 6.Bh4 Kg7 7.f4 Bh5+ 8.Kd3 exf4 9.Bf2 Rd1 10.Bxc5 bxc5 11.Rxd1 Bxd1 12.Kd2 Bxb3 13.Bf3 Bc4 14.Kc3 Bb5-+;

4... Rg2

5.Kf1 Rh2

6.Kg1! ...

6.h4 Rh1+ 7.Bg1 Rxh4 -+;

6...Rxh3

Black has won another pawn but in doing so the Rook has become imprisoned.

7.Ra1 a5

8.d6! ...

White sacrifices a pawn in the hope of drawing the ending.

8...Bxd6

9.Rd1 b5

10.b4? ...

This is a weak move that throws away any drawing chances. After 10.Kg2! Rh5 11.Be3! it is difficult to see how Black can make progress because of the embarrassing situation of his Rook. The winning idea of giving up the exchange, as seen in the main line, would not be so effective making the win problematic.

10...axb4!

White was hoping for 10...Bxb5 and the White Rook invades.

11.Ra1 ...

11.Kg2 Rh5 12.Be3 Bd7 13.Rg1 Bxf5! 14.Rh1 Bxe4 15.Rxh5 Bd5 transpose to the main line.

11...Rh5

12.Be3 Bd7

13.Kg2 Bxf5!

Fine has it worked out. Although Black will lose the imprisoned Rook for the Bishop he will have the extra pawns which is more than enough compensation for the loss of the exchange. The Black pawn majority will win on the queenside.

14.Rh1 Bxe4

15.Rxh5 Bd5

16.Rxh6+ Kg7

17.Rh1 f5 18.Rc1 Kf7 19.Kf2 f4 20.Ba7 Ke6 21.Bc5 Bxc5+ 22.Rxc5 c6 23.Rc1 Kd6 24.Rc2 c5 25.Rc1 c4 26.Ke2 b3 WHITE RESIGNED.


PRACTICAL CHESS ENDINGS CD

ChessDevon, in collaboration with PCE has produced a CD that includes practically all the endgame positions that have appeared  on this site. This CD contains 363 endgame positions taken from games and studies.  Nearly all the positions are preceded by a pen portrait of the player or composer.  A built-in programme is provided on the CD to play through the endings.

"PRACTICAL CHESS ENDINGS" is available at £12:50 (including UK postage) from "ChessDevon".

  Order by E-Mail from: bill@frostw170.fsnet.co.uk

Chess Devon: http://www.chessdevon.co.uk (Chess news and games from Devon and the West of England.)

 


I would like to briefly summarise the type of endings found on the site. These are; (a) Basic endings. (b) Practical chess endings. (c) The Endgame study.

All these are interrelated and important and you cannot understand (b) or (c) without a knowledge of (a).

(a) Basic Endings. These are theoretical positions in which we know the correct result with optimum play by both sides. They may consist of three pawns or less and also include all the non-pawn and five piece endings which have now been extensively analysed by computer and of which we have tablebases. In the days when we had adjournments some of these endings could be looked up in text books to give us some idea how to play the position. As we no longer can do this, knowledge and memory of these endings has become important in practical play. Fundamental Chess Endings (2001) by Muller and Lamprecht and Basic Endings (1992) by Balashov and Prandstetter and the earlier A Pocket Guide to Chess Endgames (1970) by David Hooper are good introductions to these endings.

(b) Practical Endings. These occur in over-the-board play where usually more pawns are present. The above ending is an example of this type. Some of these endings are in the process of being transformed to basic endings but often they finish before this stage is reached. Endgame strategy is very different from the middlegame and has its own set of rules and exceptions. Fine's book Basic Chess Endings (1941,2003) recently revised by Pal Benko and Batsford Chess Endings (1993) by Speelman, Tisdall and Wade are about basic and practical endings and both can be recommended.

(c) Endgame Studies. These are positions which have been composed and will contain elements of one or both of the above types of endings. But there are important differences between these types and the study, such as artistic form and economy of construction. An endgame study has to follow strict rules of composition, especially if it is entered into a composing competition. One of these rules states there should only be one solution. If there is an unintended second solution then the study is unsound and said to be "cooked".

Endgame studies are important to the practical player because they enhance his imagination and help him learn and enjoy areas of theory without too much effort.

John Nunn's Endgame Challenge (2002) is an excellent introduction to using endgame studies as a training tool. Walter Korn's American Chess Art (1995) is a basic introduction to the endgame study and a more comprehensive work is John Roycroft's Test Tube Chess (1972).
Pre 17/10/04 Archives

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