Oct 19, 2016, 4:11 PM |

Cars need open roads to be driven. Rooks need open files. They need targets. This is what I had in mind when I reached the following Rook endings where I was White.


I assessed that White has advantage here for he has a more mobile King. However, White's targets of d5 and a5 are protected, and offset by Black's targets at c2 and g4.
White's King is tied to the defence of the c-pawn.
In order to generate activity (and free my King), I came up with a plan to play c3 which will have two outcomes
A) Black captures ... bc after which White has the open b-file which he can secure with a4 (with a view to play Rb5 owing to his better placed King can enter a pawn endgame)
B) Black doesn't capture, after which cb ab, a4 creates a passed a-pawn, but would need the support of a Rook from behind.
Thus I initiated this with 40. Re2 preparing c3

Break it Up for Counterplay
A critical endgame position for Black. In the game he played 46. ... Rg3 which I felt was too slow. The g-pawn is not the target for Black, but rather the speed of generating counterplay himself with 46. ... h5 would have kept things level. This breaks up the White Kingside and generates enough threats to divert White and thus free the Black King from being cut from the game.

My Game Annotations and Analysis