Endings require intensive study

Chess Checks

The endings in chess require intensive study or homework as more often it is technique which plays the important role in the eventual result. The ending with one rook each is pretty complicated as even the slightest inaccuracy can lead to either a draw or loss.

In the game which follows the players reach an ending with a rook each and here Black with precise technique cuts off the White King from getting into action. Black has a couple of passed pawns on the queen side but the White King is forced to stay on the King side and Black gains an easy victory.

White: Joel Lautier (2645) – Black: Jan Timman (2635)
Moscow , 1994, Nimzo-Indian Defence
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 d5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.Qxc3 Ne4 7.Qc2 Nc6 8.e3 e5
Straight out of the Opening theory book
If 9.cxd5 Qxd5 10.Bc4
If 9...exd4 10.cxd5 Qxd5 11.Bc4 Qf5 12.0–0 dxe3 13.Bd3 exf2+
If 10.Qb3 Na5
10...exd4 11.0–0
If 11.cxd5 Qxd5 12.Nh4 Ne5
An interesting decision to retreat the bishop. If 11...dxe3 12.Bxe3 0–0 13.Rad1
12.exd4 0–0 13.b4
White is expanding on the queen side
13. ..Re8. If 13...a6 14.c5 Bh5 15.Bxe4 dxe4 16.Qxe4 Re8 17.Qf4 Bxf3 18.Qxf3 Nxd4 19.Qg4 Ne2+
14.c5 a6
If 14...Bh5 15.b5 Na5 16.Nd2 Qf6 15.Be3 Bh5
If 15.Be3 Qf6
15...Ng5 16.Ne5 Bxd3 17.Qxd3 Qf6 18.Rae1 Rad8
If 18...Nxe5 19.dxe5 Qg6 20.Qxd5 Rad8 21.Qb3
White could keep things on an even level by going in for simplification with 19.Nxc6 Qxc6  20. Bc1  
19...Nxe5 20.dxe5 Qf5 21.f4
If 21.Bd4 or 21.f3 then 21...Ne6
21...Ne4 22.Bd4
If 22.g4 Qg6  23.f5 Qg5 24.Bc1 Qe7
22...Re6 23.Re3 ; If 23.g4 Rg6 24.h3 h5 and Black gets better
23...Rg6 24.Qe1 Rc8  25.Qe2 h5 26.Kh1 Ra8 27.Rd3 b6  28.Be3  If 28.cxb6 cxb6 29.Bb2 Rc8 30.Rxd5 Rc2
If 28...bxc5 29.Bxc5
If 29.Rxd5 Nc3 30.Qd3 Qg4 31.Rd8+ Kh7 (31...Rxd8 32.Qxd8+ Kh7 33.Qd2
29...bxa4 30.Ra1 Rb8 31.Rxa4 d4 32.Bxd4 If 32.Rxd4 Nc3 And if 32.Bd2 Nf2+
32...Qxf4 33.Rf3
White could have maintained equality with 33.Qf3 Qh4
Doubling on the crucial ‘g’ file
This does not look like a good move!
34. .. Qd7
Black also misses a good move in 34...Nf2+ 35.Qxf2 Qd1+ 36.Re1 (36.Qe1 .Qxa4) 36...Qxa4
35.Ra2. If 35.Rxe4 Qxa4 36.e6 Qe8 gives advantage to Black
35...Rxb4  36.Rxe4 Rxd4 37.Rxd4 Qxd4 38.Rd2 Qg4
If 38...Qf4 39.Rd8+ Kh7 40.Qxh5+ Rh6 also works for Black
39.Qxg4 Rxg4 40.Rd8+ Kh7 41.Rd7 Rc4 42.Kg1
A forced move as the Black rank is vulnerable and Black was threatening checkmate
42. ..Rxc5 43.Rxf7 Kg6 44.e6 a5
The race of the pawns to reach the last rank and gain promotion! However Black is distinctly better now!
45.Rf8 Re5 46.Ra8
If 46.Rc8 Rxe6 47.Rxc7 Ra6
If 46...Rxe6  47.Rxa5
47.Ra6 g5 48.Kf2 c5
Diagram 1
Note here that Black has cut off White’s King and he cannot move to the queen side to stop the pawns
If 49.Rxa5 Kxe6
49...c4 50.Rc6 a4
If 50...Rxe6 51.Rxc4 Ra6 52.Ra4 Ke5
If 51.Rxc4 Ra5 52.Re4
51...a3 52.g3
If 52.Rxa3 Kxe6 53.Ra8 Kd5
52...a2 53.h4 g4+ 54.Kf4 Re2 0–1                                
Diagram 2
Black to play and win
 1... Qxe4 2.Nxe4 Ne2+ 3.Kh2 Nxc3 4.Bxc3 and Black should win.

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