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  1. 07 Mar '12 02:40
    I often randomly flip through games on the site for entertainment.

    I came across the following position and was quite happy with what I discovered.

    It is common knowledge that most bishops of opposite endings are drawn.

    There are exceptions to the rule however, and the following position is a good example.



    Here the position was agreed drawn and abandoned.
    This is the only draw between 2advent (white) and Very Rusty (black).
    It is ironic that there only draw is actually a win for white.

    A careful (or in my case ... late night and bug eyed) examination of the position reveals that the black king is stalemated. This makes it quite useless.

    Also, white has a passed g pawn that is only stopped by the powerful bishop on e5.

    If white could only find a way to overwork the piece, a win would be in site.
    Therefore, I decided to fiddle with 1.b4!



    The idea is to play 2.c5 ... I'm giving myself a free move here to show the idea.



    The idea is simple, get a white pawn to c6,d6,or b6 and overwork the bishop.
    For instance 2. ... bxc5 3.bxc5 dxc5 4.d6 does just that.



    Black can not stop both passed pawns with a lone bishop.

    Now back to the actual position after 1.b4.



    Black can not allow c5, so he captures on b4.

    1. ... axb4



    And white presses on with 2.c5! (2.a5 also works).



    if 2. ... dxc5 3.d6 is very similar to above.



    That leaves 2. ... bxc5.



    The funny thing about this ending is that white started out two pawns ahead. It required the sacrifice of those two pawns (and even material!) to reach a won opposite colored bishop endgame!!!

    Anyway, 3.a5 is a killer.



    One of the two white pawns will queen easily. Black's king is useless. White's bishop on the other hand, greatly restrains (and slows down) black's attempts at queening himself.

    Black is quite lost here.

    Here is just a line that I played around with:

    3. ... c4 4.a6 c3 5.a7 b3 6.a8=Q c2 7.Qc8 (or 7.Qe8)



    8.Qg4 mate is next.

    The lesson, I guess, is that there are always exceptions to the rules, and not all opposite colored bishops endings are drawn!

    I hope you enjoyed it.

    * Note ... I did not play through the entire game slowly. A repetition may have occured for the draw, but the win was in there for quite a while (from at least around move 61 on).
  2. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    07 Mar '12 04:26
    Originally posted by paulbuchmanfromfics
    I often randomly flip through games on the site for entertainment.

    I came across the following position and was quite happy with what I discovered.

    It is common knowledge that most bishops of opposite endings are drawn.

    There are exceptions to the rule however, and the following position is a good example.

    [fen]8/8/1p1p2Pp/p2P ...[text shortened]... for the draw, but the win was in there for quite a while (from at least around move 61 on).
    Absolutely superb- and welcome back!

    This is a free lesson for anyone who reads it.
  3. 07 Mar '12 04:48
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    Absolutely superb- and welcome back!

    This is a free lesson for anyone who reads it.
    I agree-- great analysis! I certainly would have taken a quick glance and agreed to a draw. This certainly makes a great case for looking deeper into any position.
  4. 07 Mar '12 14:25
    Originally posted by paulbuchmanfromfics
    I often randomly flip through games on the site for entertainment.

    I came across the following position and was quite happy with what I discovered.

    It is common knowledge that most bishops of opposite endings are drawn.

    There are exceptions to the rule however, and the following position is a good example.

    [fen]8/8/1p1p2Pp/p2P ...[text shortened]... for the draw, but the win was in there for quite a while (from at least around move 61 on).
    Nice analysis and interesting.
  5. 07 Mar '12 14:51
    Great he comes back after 3 years and the first thing he posts
    is an opposite coloured endgame. 😉

    I was of grabbed by the state of the Black King in the first diagram.


    How long has the King been tied up like that?

    Then knowing that 99% of all endgames should never have been reached
    because a Middle Game chance went a begging it was simply case of digging
    out the game and looking for the shot.

    That was easy.


    White played 54.Rxc7 I'm thinking 54.Bf3 Checkmate may be better.

    🙂

    Great post Paul and a good spot.

    The Black Bishop cannot take his eyes of g2.

    Some variations in the PGN format style.