Thursday, April 30, 2009


White to move

White: iiumchessmaster (2294)
Black: mariomar (2346)
online game

Rook endgames are the most common type of chess endgames played in chess literature. Every chess players need to know how to play the rook endgames correctly to achieve victory. Even when you are a pawn up, there is no guarantee that you will win the game. Here, my opponent is a pawn up, but his rook position is passively guarding the passed d-pawn which I promptly block with my rook.

Blocking the passed pawn and at the same time attacking the queenside pawns.

1.... Kf7
Trying to bring the King to more aggressive squares in the middle. The King also likes to replace the rook as the guardian of the passed pawn.

Giving Black no time to regroup by attacking the pawns.

2... bxa4 3.bxa4 Ke7 4.Ra5

Now Black has to choose between guarding the a-pawn or trying his luck with the passed d-pawn. He chose the latter.

4... f4 5.Rxa6 Re3 6.b4
Starting the passed pawns rolling.

6... Rb3 7.b5 Rb2+ 8.Kf1 Ke6
The Black King tries to cross over through the middle to help in delivering checkmate. In the meantime, White is banking on crowning one of his pawns to win the game.

9.Rb6 Ke5 10.a5 Kd4

Black throws away his passed pawn in his haste to checkmate White's King, which White duly accepts.

11.Rxd6+ Ke3 12.b6 Kxf3

Here Black should have take the draw with 12... Rb1+, but with his rating at stake, he tried to find a win. A quick glance at the board shows an ugly sight for White, but he has defensive resources.

13.Rd3+! Ke4 14.Ra3
Rook behind passed pawn, a basic rook endgame theory.

14... Kd5?
Again Black tries for a win, but this time there is no saving the game. He should have took the draw with 14... Rb1+.

15.a6 Rxb6 16.a7 1-0

Final position

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