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Twenty Rules for the Endgame

Twenty Rules for the Endgame

May 9, 2010, 8:23 PM 2

In my preparations for the Chicago Open I have been studying Reuben Fine's "Basic Chess Endings" In this book there are some great principles to keep in mind as you prepare to enter the Endgame. I hope the help you too.

  1. Start thinking about the endgame in the middle game.
  2. Somebody usually gets the better deal in every exchange.
  3. The king is a strong piece.
  4. If you are one or two pawns ahead, exchange pieces but NOT pawns.
  5. If you are one or two pawns behind, exchange pawns but NOT pieces.
  6. If you have an advantage, do not leave all the pawns on one side.
  7. A distant passed pawn is half the victory.
  8. Passed pawns should be advanced as rapidly as possible.
  9. Doubled, isolated, and blockaded pawns are weak: Avoid them!
  10. The easiest endings to win are pure pawn endings.
  11. Passed pawns should be blockaded by the king, the only piece that is not harmed harmed by watching a pawn is the knight.
  12. Two bishops vs. bishop and knight constitute a tangible advantage.
  13. Bishops are better than knights in all except blocked pawn positions.
  14. Do not place your pawns on the color of your bishop.
  15. The easiest endings to draw are those with bisops of opposite colors.
  16. Rooks belong behind passed pawns.
  17. A rook on the seventh rank is sufficient compensation for a pawn.
  18. Not all rook endings are drawn.
  19. Perpetual check looms in all queen endings.
  20. Every move in the endgame is of the utmost importance because you are close to the moment of truth.

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