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1. 19 Dec '10 13:21
In the early middle game is sometimes happens that we see the exchange, usually on f7, f2 of a rook and a pawn for two minor pieces, and i have always wondered which is advantageous or not and why it might be advantageous or not. I suspect that in the middle game two minor pieces might be better, and in the end game, rook and pawn might be better although i cannot say for sure.
2. 19 Dec '10 14:11
Originally posted by robbie carrobie
In the early middle game is sometimes happens that we see the exchange, usually on f7, f2 of a rook and a pawn for two minor pieces, and i have always wondered which is advantageous or not and why it might be advantageous or not. I suspect that in the middle game two minor pieces might be better, and in the end game, rook and pawn might be better although i cannot say for sure.
Well, let's see. Two pieces, lots of manoeuvrability. One rook and a pawn, lots of gunning power plus a long-term option of more of the same. What was the position like, again?

Richard
3.  atticus2
19 Dec '10 14:13
The exchange is rarely favourable for the player yielding the two pieces, not least for the reasons you give, but also because, rather crucially, the middle game precedes the end game
4.  Thabtos
I am become Death
19 Dec '10 15:38
Originally posted by robbie carrobie
In the early middle game is sometimes happens that we see the exchange, usually on f7, f2 of a rook and a pawn for two minor pieces, and i have always wondered which is advantageous or not and why it might be advantageous or not. I suspect that in the middle game two minor pieces might be better, and in the end game, rook and pawn might be better although i cannot say for sure.
I was taught that you sould consider saccing two minor pieces for no less than a rook and two pawns unless you could calculate a surefire win right from that sac.
5. 20 Dec '10 03:39
Yes most of the time it's bad.
The main problem is that when you do Nxf7 Rxf7 Bxf7 Kxf7, you lose a lot of time ! It's usually more important than the material in open positions.
You give 2 pieces which you've invested many tempis to develop (you've played Nf3-g5-f7 + Bf1-c4-f7) vs 1 passive rook which has cost only 1 move.
Also the slightly exposed king is rarely an issue since you lack developped pieces to attack it !
6.  Paul Leggett
Chess Librarian
20 Dec '10 14:11 / 1 edit
It depends on the number of pawns and how they are placed. Without pawns, both sides have mating material (with the exception of two knights), but the side with the rook can always secure a draw by capturing one of the opposing pieces with it.

A friend of mine in my local OTB club (he's ocean64 on the site) and I have debated and played this back and forth a bunch of times, with me taking the side of the two pieces. We've roughly split the positions we've had, but it was enough to make me revise my "two pieces" bias to a more enlightened "It depends- show me the pawns!"

Edit- I should add that I am thinking purely in endgame terms, as in the middlegame I would definitely still prefer two pieces to a rook, and three pieces over a queen.
7. 20 Dec '10 15:03 / 2 edits
Stats appear to favour the holder of the two minor pieces.

On the 1400 DB. (with over 1½ millon games a good base
for reference as it made up with games played by the lads
who read these Forums and some think this exchange is OK for the Rook).

Searched for games Where one side has just a Rook,
other has Bishop and Knight. (and of course Kings & pawns).

White has the Rook. 2342 games

White Wins 796
draws 371
Black Wins 1175

Black has the Rook 2205 games

Black Wins 733
Draws 390
White Wins 1082

Of course the pawns matter and the
Bishop and Knight must work well together.

But overall it does indicate a + for the Bishop & Knight.

Wins for the Rook in R v B+N at the lower level usually happen when one of
the minor pieces gets picked up by the Rook pulling off a tactical trick.

The minor pieces have to be careful about settling
on unprotected squares and always be on the alert for
Forks, Pins, Skewers and Harpoons.

1.Rc3 is a standard Rook Fork.

1.Rb8 winning the pinned Bishop.

1.Rb8+ Skewers the Bishop.

1.Rc3 is what I call a Harpoon.
It is neither a Pin (weaker piece pinned to stronger piece).
Or a Skewer (The stronger piece moves exposing the weaker piece).
A Harpoon fits the bill.

A basic attack,check and Rook Fork.

1.Rc3 N any 2.Rc8+ then 3.Rc7+ and 4.RxB

Also the minor pieces have to be wary about getting
too close to the enemy King.

1.Ke6 is a King fork

Then there are Rook sac tricks winning the two minor pieces.

1.Rc8+ and 2.Rxc3 or 1.Ra6+ and 2.Rxf6.

All these tricks cropped up in games I looked at on here.
8.  Paul Leggett
Chess Librarian
24 Dec '10 20:19
Originally posted by greenpawn34
Stats appear to favour the holder of the two minor pieces.

On the 1400 DB. (with over 1½ millon games a good base
for reference as it made up with games played by the lads
who read these Forums and some think this exchange is OK for the Rook).

Searched for games Where one side has just a Rook,
other has Bishop and Knight. (and of course Kings & ...[text shortened]... 8+ and 2.Rxc3 or 1.Ra6+ and 2.Rxf6.

All these tricks cropped up in games I looked at on here.
Rec'd! I have added harpoon to my chess lexicon.