How Good Are Your Pawn Endings?

How Good Are Your Pawn Endings?

GM Illingworth

Hello dear chess friends!

Sorry for not posting here in a long time! I was unwell for some time, and also had some personal challenges to sort out. 

For today's blog post, I want to share a nice video on a tricky pawn endgame from the good old days! Pawn endgames not only contain a lot of interesting tactical ideas, but they are also great for training our calculation, as in a pawn endgame, we can figure out the correct result with best play (win for White, draw or win for Black). 

The key position is as follows:

For serious chess students, I would recommend spending at least 15 minutes analysing this position, and recording your analysis, before continuing with my video below. That way, you will actively train your calculation, and notice, from your own experience, the key ideas you need to hone to be a pawn endgame master! 

Either way, enjoy my video below, where I explain this pawn endgame in detail!

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While writing this post, I noticed that I failed to address an important defensive possibility for Black in the video. I've covered how White wins against a waiting approach by Black in the fragment below:

You will notice how, once White secured the c4-square for his king, he widened the beachhead by first exchanging on f5, creating a potential weakness for White to attack with his king. Then, he fixed Black's pawn in place with a5, so that when the kings faced off, White would win the 'opposition battle' by forcing Black to move his king first, giving vital ground to White to invade and win. 

Thank you for reading/watching! I'll be continuing this series 'How Good Are Your Pawn Endings' on my Youtube channel: 

I'll see you there