Pete's Pathetic Chess: 'Totally Unreal' Endgame

Pete's Pathetic Chess: 'Totally Unreal' Endgame

pete
pete
Jul 20, 2015, 12:00 AM |
33 | Fun & Trivia

Last week, we examined the depths of my chess ineptitude for the first 21 moves of a recent blitz game played on the Chess.com live server.

Join me, grandmaster Roman Dzindzichashvili, and the fictional voice of Stockfish 6 as we now analyze the game to its bitter conclusion for -- hopefully -- some educational benefit. 

Let us know what you think of my pathetic chess in the comments below and on Facebook.

The game: Chess.com blitz, 10 minutes per side. Analysis of the first 21 moves is here.

22.Nxc6 Bxc6 23.Rxd6 Bxg2 24.Bf5 Rf7 

Pete:

I traded Black's d-pawn for my g-pawn, which is fine with me. I know I am behind in this game, so I need to start making some serious threats soon. If I can get my knight, bishop, and rook working together against Black's king, maybe I can use the open space on the kingside to make a comeback. I wanted to check along the seventh rank to win Black's h-pawn, but he stopped it. 

GM Dzindzi:

Do you stop Rd7+ by playing Rf7 or Rad8? Answer: 24... Rad8 25. Rxa6 Rfe8. The end.

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

-1.58, depth 25. Black is still winning even after this sub-optimal move. 

25.Nf4 Bf3 26.Ne6+ Kh6 27.Rd3 Re7

Pete:

I did my best to stir up some trouble for Black's king, and it worked. After 27. Rd3, I am threatening the bishop and a "side-rank mate" on h3 if it moves away on the long diagonal. I started feeling pretty good about myself here, thinking that my threat was unstoppable, but upon further review it seems that neither my opponent nor I even considered 27...Bh5, which solves all of Black's problems.  

GM Dzindzi:

For some reason, Black decided that it's the perfect time to start giving pieces away!

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

+3.48, depth 25. Somehow you are back to winning this game. Surely your technique from here will be flawless. 

28.Rxf3 Rxe6 29.Bxe6 Re8 30.Rh3+ Kg5 31.Bc4 h5 32.Bf7 Rh8 33.a3 bxa3 34.bxa3 h4 35.c4 Rc8 36.Kc2 Rc7 37.Bd5 Kg4 38.Be6+ Kg5 39.Kd3 f5 40.Kd4 Kg4 41.Bxf5+

Pete:

Black gave up a rook to defend against my mating threat, and now I am in the driver's seat. My passed c-pawn is probably the key, so I should try to push that as quickly as I can. I played Bxf5, giving up my bishop for both of Black's passed kingside pawns. This means I won't have to worry about them getting ahead of my two pieces and becoming unstoppable. Removing those pawns also removes all of Black's winning chances and allows me to focus on promoting my c-pawn. That's definitely worth a bishop. 

GM Dzindzi:

32. Rxh5+ would have been a quick solution. 41. Bxf5+ still must be winning, but it requires some accuracy. 

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

+2.97, depth 25. White is still winning, but giving up the bishop was unnecessary. Rh1 was a far better move. 

Kxf5 42.Rxh4 Rd7+ 43.Kc5 Rd3 44.Kb4 Ke5 45.Rh5+ Ke4

Pete:

The position after giving up my bishop is trickier than I thought. Black's a-pawn is super weak and all I have to do is get my rook to a5 to take it. I have to be careful about keeping my other two pawns, too, because I know a lot of rook vs. rook and pawn endgames are drawn. But I don't think Black can save the game if I have two passed pawns. 

GM Dzindzi:

After the obvious 45...Kd6, we get a theoretically drawn position, where White will have two extra pawns (a and c) and no way to win with good defense by Black. But that would have been too much for this game. Smile

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

+24.42, depth 25. Black's last move was a big mistake, and now White should win quickly and easily. Notice I said "should." 

46.a4 Rd1 47.Ra5 Rb1+ 48.Kc5 Rc1 49.Rxa6 Kd3 50.Rd6+ Ke4 51.a5 Ke5 52.Rd5+ Ke4 53.Rd4+ Ke5 54.Rh4 Ra1 55.Kb5 Rb1+ 56.Kc6 Ra1 57.Kb5 Rb1+ 58.Ka6 Kd6 59.Rh6+ Kc5


Pete:

Looks like my plans are working out now. I won Black's last remaining pawn, and now both of my pawns are passed and defendable. I don't see how Black could save this game. Black can pile up on my c-pawn with his rook and king, but after the exchanges, my a-pawn will score the touchdown. 

GM Dzindzi:

Again(!) after Kc7, it's a draw. I don't know how much time each player had left. For their sake, I hope they didn't have much time, or the number of mistakes is astounding.

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

Tablebase: draw. Actually, White threw away the win after 58. Ka6. After 58...Kd6 59.Rh6+ Kc5, the game is still a tablebase draw. Too bad you humans don't have tablebases in your brains.

60.Rh4 Rb4 61.Ka7 Kc6 62.a6 Kc7 63.Rh7+ Kc6 64.Rb7 Rxc4

Pete:

All right! I let him take my c-pawn to establish my rook on the b-file, cutting off his king. I must be just a few moves away from certain victory now. Black's king can't get anywhere near my a-pawn, and I will defend it with my king and rook to ensure promotion.

GM Dzindzi:

The position is a total draw.

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

Tablebase: draw. I don't even need the tablebase to see how drawn this position is. Why are you two still playing?

65.Kb8 Ra4

Pete:

I moved my king to b8 to clear a path for my pawn. He put his rook behind my passed pawn, but it's not going to be enough to stop it. He will have to give up his rook for my pawn, and I will have an easy winning endgame with rook and king vs. king. 

GM Dzindzi:

There is only so much the position can take...totally unreal! After 65...Rh4 it's the easiest draw.

Stockfish 6 Engine Translation:

Tablebase: White mates in 19 moves. All your confidence was totally incorrect. You thought you would queen the pawn easily, but Black had five moves to clinch the draw. All he had to do was move his rook anywhere to the right. Looks like you blundered your way into another win, Pete.  

66.a7 Re4 67.a8=Q Re8+ 68.Ka7 1-0

Want to see more amateur games critiqued by a grandmaster? Enjoy GM Dzindzi's member-game analysis video series, or check back in the coming weeks for more Pete's Pathetic Chess.  

What did you think of the game? Let us know in the comments. 



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