Opposition and Outflanking
Recently I ditched Jesus de Villa's 100 Endgames You Must Know in favor of Mark Dvoretsky's Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual (DEM). After getting through 20 of de Villa's 100 endgames, I became disillusioned because of minor sloppiness and lack of thoroughness in several of de Villa's explanations. There is nothing sloppy about DEM, though it can lack some thoroughness in another way--it makes assumptions that the reader can extrapolate some simple "general rules" on their own--or that they have already been exposed to those ideas. This is unlike a book such as Silman's Complete Endgame Course, where he does the heavy lifting by presenting all the rules and guidelines for the reader.
The first chapter of DEM is Pawn Endgames and I am currently working through the first set of exercises from the Opposition section. It has been pretty straightforward, which is good news. it means that my extensive study of Silman was good preparation for reading DEM.
Here is the second exercise in the chapter, one where I completely missed the idea--I thought white was playing for a draw! Because of that, I thought it a good idea to break it down further and annotate exactly what was going on, in my own words and variations. (Some variations here come from the book and other from me and my engine, Toga.)