PRACTICAL CHESS ENDGAME or BRIAN'S CHESS FOLLY.

17/10/99

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.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Thanks to Paul Cheng and Henryk Kalafut.
THIS WEEK

POSITION 111

White to play & DRAW

FORSYTH NOTATION:5R2/4K1k1/8/8/1pp5/p7/8/8:  


LAST WEEK, POSITION 110

Carlos Torre (1904-1978). Mexico's first player to reach Grandmaster strength. In 1925 he appeared in 3 top class European events: Baden Baden (=10), Marienbad (=3) and Moscow (=5). In this latter tournament he beat Emanuel Lasker, the former World Champion in a celebrated game with an attacking opening which has become associated with his name. Unfortunately his early promise was never to be fulfilled. After a number of setbacks in 1926, he suffered ill-health and had to retire from serious chess.

Capablanca vs Torre

Moscow, 1925

Black to play & DRAW

FORSYTH NOTATION:8/k1N5/b7/P2p4/1K1P4/8/8/8: 

Torre was hanging on in this game. After playing the French defence he found himself saddled with the classic bad Bishop vs knight ending. Playing the then World Champion, arguably the greatest endgame player this century, the result looked a forgone conclusion. Gradually as the pawns were being exchanged it was looking very dismal indeed for Torre. Miraculously he finds a drawing formula which probably surprised the great Cuban himself: even though White goes two pawns up he will not be able to win.

1. .... Bc4

The Bishop guards the pawn and takes up position on an important diagonal.

2. Kc5 Bb3!

The Bishop stays in touch with the long diagonals that go across the d-file .

2...Bf1 also seems to hold; 3.Kxd5 Kb7 4. Kd6 Bh3 5.d5 Bg2 6.Nb5 Ka6 7.Kc6 Bxd5=.

2...Ba2?? would throw away the draw; 3.Nxd5 Bb1 4.Nb4! The Knight is better placed behind the pawns. White now has a winning position. 4...Bf5 5.d5 Bh3 6.d6+-

3.Kc6...

3.Nxd5 Ka6! 4.Nb6 Kxa5 5.Nc4+ blocking the diagonal in this case doesn't work; 5...Ka6 6.d5 Bxc4 7.Kxc4 Kb6=

3.Kd6 Bd1 4.Kxd5 Kb7 5.Kd6 (5.Ne8 Ka6=) 5...Bg4 6.d5 Bf3 7.N b5 Ka6 8.Kc6 Bxd5+=

3...Bc4

4.a6 Be2!

Not 4...Bb3? 5.Kb5! Bc4+ 6.Ka5 Nb5+ White wins.

5.Kxd5 Kb6!!

This is the key move and the only way to draw. If the King retreated to ...b1? then 6.Kc6 Ka7 7.d5 Bf3 8.Kb5 Black is lost because the Knight will replace the King on b5 and force home the a-pawn. Whites reply to ...Kb6 is forced. If the Knight moves away and the a-pawn is captured then Black will draw easily.

6.Kd6 Bg4!

7.d5 Bf3!

White cannot stop:

8...Bxd5!

with a DRAW.

The secret of endgame success is knowing the basic positions. These include the five piece endings which have now been extensively analysed by computer and of which we have databases. The Torre ending can only really be understood in context to the basic ending NPvB for the White d-pawn in which many variations will resolve into. The a-pawn will be exchanged for the Black d-pawn. Fortunately the Russian Grandmaster Averbakh and his team of experts produced drawing "charts" which are good enough for most practical situations. These charts are a big aid to memory; they are the only practical way of remembering the result of many basic endgame positions. The "chart" for this endgame which can be found in most endgame texts indicates that the ending is drawn provided the pawn has not crossed over the d6 square and the light squared Bishop is controlling the squares immediately in front of the pawn. The Bishop has to have access to the important diagonals a4-e8 or h3-c8. The King can be far away but Black will still draw.

In the days when we had adjournments, 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, understanding and memorising of these endings (Charts) has become important to practical play. A Pocket Guide to Chess Endgames (1970) by the late David Hooper, Basic Endings (1992) by Balashov and Prandstetter and Batsford Chess Endings (1993) by Speelman, Tisdall and Wade are excellent introductions to basic endings. 


Autumn Endgame Solving Tournament. Click here >> positions

Closes: 17/10/99 24:00 GMT.

Winners names and Solutions will be published on 31/10/99.


Newcomers are welcomed to take part in the cumulative competition.
   

Click here for the NEW weekly >> CUMULATIVE COMPETITION  

Henryk Kalafut of the United States wins in September.


Important Dates


  SPECIAL MILLENNIUM ENDGAME SOLVING COMPETITION

The competitor's 3 highest scores only will count. The winner will be announced in FEBRUARY 2000. The prize will be £100 or equivalent. In the case of a tie the prize will be shared.The MILLENNIUM COMPETITION closes with the Christmas event. No new participant can be considered for the prize.

 

 

The overall scores for the millennium prize are as follows:

Patrick Peschlow GERMANY

David Rowe ENGLAND

Henryk Kalafut USA/POLAND

Mike Fitch USA

Vojna Alexander UKRAINE

Peter Bereolos USA

 

 

 

A A B+

B+B+B

B+A

B+B+

A

B+

 


ARCHIVES

10/10/99

Position 109

Philidor

3/10/99

Position 108

Panov

26/9/99

Position 107

Herbstmann

19/9/99

Position 106

Steinitz

12/9/99

Position 105

I. Horowitz

5/9/99

Position 104

O'Kelly

29/8/99

Position 103

Gurvich

22/8/99

Position 102

Prins

15/8/99

Position 101

Peckover

8/8/99

Position 100

Mikenas

1/8/99

Position 99

Roycroft

25/7/99

Position 98

Sultan Khan

Pre 25/7/99 Archives

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