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Adrian Mikhalchishin: Kantans T. : Popovic D.

Dresden 2016

Tactics in Rook endings


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9-+-+k+-+0
In Rook ends we have in most cases plan to
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promote a pawn. There are many obstacles 9-+-+-+-+0
and in many cases it is useful to have some
tactical tool in hand. In this article we can 9+-+-+-+-0
show the role of passed pawn before 9R+-+-+-+0
promotion, how to use tactics to go forward,
many typical mistakes fighting such pawns. 9+-+-+K+-0
Of course, there are some typical mistakes 9p+-+-+-tr0
which stronger side demonstrates,
especially overlooking fantastic stalemate 9+-+-+-+-0
defense. xiiiiiiiiy
67.Ke3??
Vyzmanavin A. : Lerner K. Here it was necessary to kick out Rook from
Lvov 1984 the h file! 67.Kg3 Tb2 68.Kf3 Kd7 69.Ke3
Th2 70.Kd3 Kc6 71.Kc3 Kb5 72.Ta8.
XIIIIIIIIY 67...Th3! 68.Kd2 Th1! 69.Ta2 Th2 0:1.
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Varga Z. : Groetz H.
9+-+-+-+-0 Austria 2007
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74.Kc2 Ta3 75.Kd2?? 9ptr-+-+-+0
Incredible, but it was necessary to go back
here! 75.Kb2= Tg3 76.Kc2 Kd5 77.Kd2 Ta3 9+-+-+-+-0
78.Ke2 h2 79.Kf2.
75...h2 76.Ke2 Ta1!
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Forcing the white rook to come to the same It is very strange that classical knowledge
rank as the king. from great players is not studied by all
77.Th2 Ta2 0:1. others!
77...Tb3 78.Ke2??
It is incredible that an experienced GM
made such a mistake against a much weaker
player!
There were two easy drawish options
78.Kg2; 78.Kf2 Th3 79.Kg2.
78...Th3 79.Kd2 Th1 80.Ta2 Th2 0:1.

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 1


Bernstein O. : Smyslov V. Noritsyn N. : Babula V.
Groningen 1946 Khanty-Mansiysk 2010
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59...b2?? 57.Kg2 Tb3 58.Kf2 Th3 59.Ke2??
Here a young future World champion tries Correct was 59.Kg2 as in the first example
to immediately conduct the maneuver but he 59...Tb3 60.Kf2 Kb6 61.Ta8 Kb5 62.Ke2
falls into a stalemate! Kb4 63.Kd2 Tb2 64.Kc1 Kb3 65.Tb8 Ka2
Easy win was after 59...Ke4 60.Tb4 Kd5 66.Tc8! transposing into a famous draw
61.Tf4 Th1 (61...b2 62.Tf1 Kc4 63.Kd2 position.
Kb3+) 62.Tb4 b2+. 59...a2 60.Kd2 Th1 0:1.
60.Tb2! Kg4
60...Th2 61.Kf3 Tb2= Stalemate. Zhao Xue : Stefanova A.
61.Kf1 . Khanty-Mansiysk 2014
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Gunina V. : Ziaziulkina N.
Rijeka 2010 9-+-+-+-+0
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9p+-+-mK-+0 xiiiiiiiiy
9tr-+-+-+-0 With the modern time control of 30 seconds
increment big mistakes in the endgames are
xiiiiiiiiy quite usual.
Black didn't study her classics obviously!] 64.Ta6 Tf7 65.Kg6 Tf1 66.Ta7 Kf8??
74...Th1?? The simple way to draw was 66...Ke6 67.h6
It was necessary to know Smyslov's mistake Tg1 68.Kh7 Tg2 69.Tg7 Th2=.
we saw earlier! 74...Ke5 75.Ta8 f3. 67.Ta8 Ke7 68.h6 Tg1 69.Kf5 Tf1 70.Ke5
75.Ta2! Th2 76.Kf3 Th3 Th1 71.h7! Th7 72.Ta7 1:0.
Just now Black saw the stalemate after
76...Ta2.
77.Kg2 Kg4 78.Ta8 Tb3 79.Tg8 Kf5 .

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 2


Smirin I. : Kasparov G. Vasiukov E. : Dzindzichashvili R.
Yerevan 1996 Baku 1972
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The World Champion conducts this Here this maneuver doesn't win directly but
maneuver easily and quickly: prepares transposing into a winning pawn
39...Ta1! 40.Ke2 a2 41.Kf2 e4 42.h4 e3 endgame.
43.Ke2 Tg1 0:1. 58.Tb6 Ta2 59.h6 Th2 60.h7! Kf7 61.Tb8
Th7 62.Tb7 Kg6 63.Th7 Kh7 64.Kd2
Shirov A : Kramnik V. The pawn ending is winning for White as
Belgrade 1999 the black king is too far.
XIIIIIIIIY 64...Kg6 65.Kd3 Kf5 66.Kd4 Ke6 67.Kc5
Kd7 68.Kb5 Kc7 69.Ka6 1:0.
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9+-zpk+-+-0 Scheichel H. : Sax G.
Teeside 1974
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59.Ta8
Shirov could immediately play 59.b6 Ta5 9-+-+K+-+0
(59...cb6 60.a7; 59...c6 60.Ke5 Ta5 61.Kf6 9+-+-+-+-0
Ta6 62.b7) 60.Kc4 Ta4 61.Kb5.
59...Ta1 xiiiiiiiiy
59...h5 did not help: 60.a7 h4 61.b6. Here similar ideas were conducted in
60.a7 Td1 61.Ke4 Te1 62.Kf3 Ta1 63.b6! opposite way!
Finally! 59...a2! 60.Kd3 e2! 61.Ke2 Th1 62.Ta2
63...cb6 64.Th8 1:0. Th2 0:1.

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 3


Kopajev N. 2...h3! 3.gh3! ef2
Shakhmaty v SSSR, 1949 Mission completed!
XIIIIIIIIY 4.Tb7
4.Kf2 Th1.
9-+-+-mK-+0 4...Kf6 5.Tb6 Ke5 6.Tb5 Kd4 7.Kf2 Th1
9+-mk-+P+-0 8.Kg3 b1D 9.Tb1 Tb1 10.Kf4 Kd5 11.h4
9-+-+-+-+0 Tf1 12.Kg5 Ke6 13.Kg6 Tf6
A bit easier win was after 13...Tf4.
9+-+-+-+-0 14.Kg7 Tf7 15.Kg8 Ta7! 0:1.
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Stany G. : Oleksienko M.
9zp-+-+-tr-0 Kolkata 2012
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The greatest rook endings specialist in 9-+-+-zp-+0
history, Nikolay Kopaev, made a nice study
with this idea. He was the real author of the 9+-+-zp-mk-0
classical Averbakh manual on rook 9-+-+P+p+0
endgames!
1.Ke7 Te3 2.Kf6 Tf3 3.Ke6 Te3
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3...Kc6 4.Ta6! Kc7 5.Ta3. 9-zp-+KzP-zP0
4.Kd5! Tf3 9+r+-+-+-0
Another defense did not work: 4...Td3 5.Ke4
Td8 6.Ke5. xiiiiiiiiy
5.Ta3 Tf1 46...g6
5...Tf7 6.Ta7. Black's plan is to open the second rank.
6.Ta8! Tf7 7.Ta7 1:0. 47.Tb6 f5 48.Tb5 fe4 49.Te5 Kf6 50.Tb5
e3! 51.fe3
Martinovic Sl. : Dumpor A. 51.Tb8 ef2 52.Kf2 Th1.
Novi Becej 1986 51...Th1 52.Tb2 Th2 0:1.
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Polugaevsky L. : Parma B.
9-+-+-+-+0 Soviet Union 1965
9+-+-+-mk-0 Sometimes even on the top level the
9-tR-+-+-+0 tragedies and comedies are happening.

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xiiiiiiiiy 9-+-+-+r+0
1...g4! 2.hg4
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Black's idea was to take on f2, then play h4 9-+-+-+-+0
h3 and after the capture opening the second 9+-+-+-+-0
rank and then play Rh1, completing the
maneuver. xiiiiiiiiy
FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 4
White's plan is to come to the classical Vistaneckis I. : Sardarov A.
position after opening the seventh rank. USSR 1961
60.a6 Ta4 61.Ta8 Kf7 62.a7 Ta5 63.h6
And Black resigned as he just saw the forced
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capture on h6 and the rook check. But in 9R+-+-+-+0
chess capture is not obligatory!!
63...Kg6!
9zP-+-mkp+-0
63...gh6 64.Th8. 9-+-+p+p+0
64.Kd4 Kh7!!
And Black could achieve a draw! 1:0. 9tr-+-zP-zP-0
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Evelev A. : Mikljeva A. 9+-+-+-+-0
Moscow 1993 xiiiiiiiiy
XIIIIIIIIY To open the seventh rank now it is necessary
9R+-+-+-+0 to sacrifice three pawns! Just one remark-
with the king on g7 it does not work!]
9zP-+-mkp+-0 1.f5!! ef5
9-+-+-+p+0 1...gf5 2.g6 fg6 3.Th8.
2.e6 Ta4 3.ef7 Kf7 4.Th8 1:0.
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9-+K+-zPP+0 Glavina Rossi P. : Oms Pallisse J.
Zaragoza 2010
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xiiiiiiiiy 9-+-+-zpp+0
In most practical situations the seventh rank
is not available for checks. So it is necessary 9+-+-zpk+p0
to open one if it is possible! 9-+-+-+-zP0
1.Kc5?
Chess is timing, as great Robert Fischer used 9+-+PmKPzP-0
to say. 1.g5! Ta1 2.f5! gf5 3.g6 sacrificing
two pawns to clear the seventh rank! 3...Kf6
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4.gf7 Kf7 5.Th8. 9tr-+-+-+-0
1...Kf6!
If the king will be transferred to g7 then our
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maneuver here is not possible. Sometimes the idea of this maneuver is
2.Kb6 Tb2 3.Kc7 Tc2 4.Kd7 Ta2 . conducted on an open file after a few pawn
sacrifices.
36.g4! hg4 37.fg4 Kg4 38.h5! Kg5
38...gh5 39.Tg8.
39.hg6 Kg6 40.Tg8 1:0.

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 5


Peralta Fe. : Bukavshin I. Volkevich : Fishbein
Cannes 2014 Moscow 1958
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52.Tb8! 1...fg3 2.hg3??
White gets his rook to a8, moves his pawn to White intended to win by moving the f-
a7 and then creates a passed pawn on the f- pawn forward but overlooked simple tactics!
file. After 52.g4? Td3 53.a6 Ta3! 54.Tb6 Winning was 2.Kg3 Kh7 3.h4! gh4 4.Kh3
Tf3 55.Kd2 Tg3 Black should be OK. and just now is it possible to move the f-
52...Ta4 53.Ta8 Ta2 pawn to f6.
Did not work 53...Ta1 54.Kd2 Ta2 55.Kc3 2...g4!! 3.fg4
Tg2 56.Tg8. And a draw was agreed as White can't reach
54.g4 Kg5 55.a6 Kf4 a main theoretical position. Everybody has
After 55...Kg6 56.a7 Kg7 57.f4 Kh7 White to remember that winning are f- and e-
plays 58.f5 followed by g4g5 and f5f6. pawns, while g- and h-pawns are a draw!
56.a7 Kf3 This is the rule to remember. .
XIIIIIIIIY Stevic H. : Nishant M.
9R+-+-+-+0 Dubai 2014
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xiiiiiiiiy 9-+-+-+-+0
57.g5! fg5 58.Tf8 Kg2 59.a8D Ta8 60.Ta8 9tr-+-+-+-0
g4 61.Kd2 g3 62.Ke2 Kh1 63.Ta1 1:0
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52.g4! hg4
Or 52...Ta3 53.Kc2 hg4 54.Kd2 Ta4
55.h5+ with next h5h6 opening the

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 6


seventh rank.
53.Ke2 Ta2 54.Kf1 Ta1 55.Kg2 Ta3 56.h5
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White threatens to play h5h6 and after
... gh6, Rh8!, Ra7, Rh7 is winning. Black
has no defense simply.
56...Ta2 57.Kg3 Ta3 58.Kg4 Ta1 59.h6
gh6 60.Th8 1:0.

Safarli E. : Nikolaidis I.
Porto Carras 2011
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57.f4!
From this move it is clear what position
White is going to enter!
57...Td2 58.fg5 hg5 59.Tb8 Td3 60.b4 Tb3
61.b5 Kf6 62.b6 Kg6 63.f3!
Preventing g5g4 and after that White will
play h3h4.
63...Kg7 64.b7 Tb4
White sacrifices the pawn to obtain f passed
pawn.
65.h4! g4 66.f4!
It is always room for mistakes! 66.fg4 Tg4
67.Kh3 Tb4. 1:0.

FIDE Surveys Adrian Mikhalchishin 7