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The "Simplest" Thing in Chess (Part Three)

  • GM Gserper
  • | Apr 24, 2013
  • | 20335 views
  • | 39 comments

I would like to start today's installment of my column with a basic position somebody posted in the comments, which surprisingly was difficult for some of you.

You should remember this simple rule: once the King gets to the sixth rank (third rank for Black) AND he is in front of his pawn, such a position is winning regardless of whose turn it is to play.  Here is the simple proof:
I hope now you should be able to solve the following simple looking position. Just don't fall into a trap!
If these basic positions are still confusing for you, don't be upset, sometimes even experienced players make mistakes there. The next notorious position was published in dozens of books:
In this position White absolutely correctly realized that the d5 pawn is going to be lost and therefore she made the worst possible "move" : she resigned!
Ironically, every single legal move in this position leads to a draw!  All White needs to do is to make sure that once Black captures the d5 pawn, White plays Kd3 which leads to a basic theoretical draw.
So far we analyzed the simplest basic endgames, but even a position where each side has just a King and a pawn can be extremely complicated. The next classical study by Richard Reti is a good example. If you've never seen it before, it's going to be almost impossible to solve it.  Indeed, it looks like White pawn is doomed and Black pawn is unstoppable and yet White can escape for a draw!
If you understand the famous 'Reti idea', it shouldn't be that difficult to find a way to draw the next position from the game of two famous chess players.
to be continued....

Comments


  • 2 years ago

    Ricardoruben

    Very nice series, thank you for Sharing! :)

  • 2 years ago

    sunilduttmishra

    nice training

  • 2 years ago

    simpson2510

    Chess never gets boring. its always interesting. fantastic site. keep it up

  • 2 years ago

    Kasvarof

    Thanks..

  • 2 years ago

    checketam

    Lovely puzzles all! Thanks a lot!

  • 2 years ago

    kauberdi

    great ones!!

  • 2 years ago

    LousanneB

    thanks!

  • 2 years ago

    CP6033

    Really great series

  • 2 years ago

    chessfreak800

    Very good article.Laughing

  • 2 years ago

    chessfreak800

  • 2 years ago

    bbjjoorrnn

    niceLaughing

  • 2 years ago

    Ironknight777

    Thankz for the article. Very informative. 

  • 2 years ago

    Lastwish14

    [COMMENT DELETED]
  • 2 years ago

    Watch_Your_Queen_Bro

    Thanks!

  • 2 years ago

    SimonWebbTiger

    Thanks very much!

  • 2 years ago

    MarkProb

    COOL! Thank you.

  • 2 years ago

    chasm1995

    Thank you, GM Gserper.  These are things I have never learned that are just what I need to step up my endgame.

  • 2 years ago

    RedNada

    Mastering the basics is a hard part of chess.

  • 2 years ago

    tomerarazy

    A friend of mine wanted to comment that this is not always true!

    In the case where the pawn is in the 'A' file (or 'H' file for black) the game will draw (possibly through stalemate).

    For example in this game:
    http://www.chess.com/livechess/game?id=504252039

  • 2 years ago

    Pure_Pawnage

    I probably wouldn't have been able to find the solution to draw the Reti position if in a 1m blitz game...Well unless I was very lucky, and possibly drunk :D Blitzed level :))

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