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  1. 01 Aug '12 02:22
    In one of my most recent games on RHP, I found myself struggling with one rook against two minor pieces in the ending. After I sacrificed my extra pawn to exchange the last pair of knights, we ended up in the following position:



    A draw was agreed here, but I'm not sure if my opponent (black) made couldn't have played on. Have you been in a similar position? Is it really a draw or does black have a shot at winning here by preparing to advance with his king?
  2. 01 Aug '12 03:03
    Surely black has a chance with two bishops a n pawns to become queens. Advancing with the King would have changed the entire game.
  3. 01 Aug '12 07:42 / 3 edits
    I would say it's a draw, the king can't advance whilst the rookies guards that file, one of the bishops is useless, all white needs to do is keep his rook on the f file.

    Edited twice for auto correct.

    Jesus, edited three times and my phone still changes rook to "rookies"
  4. 01 Aug '12 10:27
    There might be chances for Black to try and get his king across the e-file by interposing with one of the bishops, e.g. play the Black king to d3 and then play Bd4 and Be3 to allow the king over. I still don't think it works though as White can hassle either the light bishop or the g6 pawn while Black tries to arrange that. The idea for Black is to get in Kf3 and Bf2, or maybe even play for mate with Kf1, Bg1+ and Bg2#. I think it only works if White is careless with the rook.
  5. 01 Aug '12 15:33
    Black can afford to lose the g6 pawn in order to set up an attack; the bishop can defend h5 and f5. The question is: is it possible to reach f3 or f1 with the king?
  6. 01 Aug '12 16:25
    So if Bg4, and then g6 drops, White's only chance to survive is to check from the side with the rook if the king gets across the e-file - if Black gets in Kf1 and there are no checks it's game over. But the problem for me now is with the light bishop on g4, White can use a2 and c2 safely to deliver checks, the dark bishop on its own can't control enough squares to stop it. It does control a1 obviously so the c-file looks the best place for the White rook as it can then check from c1 and c2 without a problem.
  7. 02 Aug '12 03:49 / 2 edits
    What if it was 2 KNIGHTS versus the rook. Who wins?

    Ummm, make it white to move in the diagram.

  8. 02 Aug '12 04:00 / 2 edits
    I'd take the knights there. You can retreat the king to defend the g6 pawn if you need, put one knight on e4 and then try to attack g3 with the other as well - something the two bishops can't do. Then both white pieces will be tied up to the defense of the pawn and black can bring his king closer. I don't know if all that would work out tactically, but in theory it's possible. :p

    With pawns in only one side, knights are superior to the bishops. (Aren't they? I remember seeing that somewhere...) That's the reason I sacrificed a pawn in order to exchange the last pair of knights and try my luck against black's two bishops. With a knight on the board, the win seems easier.



    I'm not 100% sure about the knights, but I believe this one is a clear win. King defends pawns, knight goes to e4, bishop attacks g3 and ties up rook, then king advances. I don't think a lot could go wrong here.

    Then again, I might be talking nonsense. I haven't set up any of those positions on an engine.
  9. 02 Aug '12 15:04
    Originally posted by danilop
    I'd take the knights there. You can retreat the king to defend the g6 pawn if you need, put one knight on e4 and then try to attack g3 with the other as well - something the two bishops can't do. Then both white pieces will be tied up to the defense of the pawn and black can bring his king closer. I don't know if all that would work out tactically, but in th ...[text shortened]... in, I might be talking nonsense. I haven't set up any of those positions on an engine.
    I don't see why you would sacrifice you're extra (passed) pawn just to exchange. You are giving up an advantage for an even trade!! When you make such an exchange you should ask what you are getting and what you are giving... if knights are better with pawns on one side of the board what does that matter if you both have a knight?

    I think if you give white a pawn here then it is black fighting for the draw(depending on where the pawn is.)
  10. 02 Aug '12 15:19 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by tomtom232
    I don't see why you would sacrifice you're extra (passed) pawn just to exchange. You are giving up an advantage for an even trade!! When you make such an exchange you should ask what you are getting and what you are giving... if knights are better with pawns on one side of the board what does that matter if you both have a knight?

    I think if you give white a pawn here then it is black fighting for the draw(depending on where the pawn is.)
    This is the position in which I decided to give up the pawn:



    I might be wrong, but I think white is already fighting for the draw here. The passed pawn is easily blocked and will eventually fall. I'd rather be able to decide when and how it will be taken, so that the ensuing exchanges bring up a position in which I can set up a good defense.
  11. 02 Aug '12 16:08
    Originally posted by danilop
    This is the position in which I decided to give up the pawn:

    [fen]2R1nb2/5k1p/6p1/3P1p2/4b3/4N1PP/5P1K/8 w - - 21 65[/fen]

    I might be wrong, but I think white is already fighting for the draw here. The passed pawn is easily blocked and will eventually fall. I'd rather be able to decide when and how it will be taken, so that the ensuing exchanges bring up a position in which I can set up a good defense.
    "The passed pawn is easily blocked and will eventually fall"

    How? Put you're rook on the sixth rank then black can't attack it with enough force any time soon since moving the knight will allow you to advance the pawn and the king can't step forward to help. Obviously not Rc6 since that walks into a pin.



    However I think you're critical mistake came earlier




    Never rule out that I may be missing something though! I'm only a lowly 1600. 🙂
  12. 02 Aug '12 17:15 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by tomtom232
    "The passed pawn is easily blocked and will eventually fall"

    How? Put you're rook on the sixth rank then black can't attack it with enough force any time soon since moving the knight will allow you to advance the pawn and the king can't step forward to help. Obviously not Rc6 since that walks into a pin.

    [pgn][FEN "2R1nb2/5k1p/6p1/3P1p2/4b3/4N1PP/5P1

    Never rule out that I may be missing something though! I'm only a lowly 1600. 🙂
    On the first diagram, I feared 3... f4 followed by 4... Bd6, after which things seem to be collapsing.



    On the second position, 3. Ra8+ isn't really a threat; black's bishop covers that square. I'd go with 2... Nf7 and follow up with either 3... Ng5 (if white allows it) or 3... Nd8 planning 4... Nc6. That position really worries me. If black manages to consolidate, both queenside pawns are in danger. If they fall, I could end up in an even more inferior endgame.

    After black got two pieces for a rook, I started playing for the draw. In my other game against the same opponent (Game 9400640), he got in trouble by trying to squeeze a win out of an equal endgame. I was worried that the same might end up happening to me... and sort of hoped he could make the same mistake again if he faced a tough defense here - wishful thinking, I know. :o)

    I'm probably missing a lot of crucial details in the position, though; I'm just a 1900 without an engine and with little understanding of such messy, imbalanced engames. 😛
  13. 02 Aug '12 17:21 / 6 edits
    Originally posted by danilop
    On the first diagram, I feared 3... f4 followed by 4... Bd6, after which things seem to be collapsing.

    [pgn][FEN "2R1nb2/5k1p/6p1/3P1p2/4b3/4N1PP/5P1K/8 w - - 21 65"]1.Rb8 Nf6 2.Rb7 Kg8 3.Rb5 f4 4.gxf4 {Otherwise white has to move the knight and d5 falls} Bd6 {Recovers the pawn and puts pressure on the knight; d5 falls soon} [/pgn]

    On the second positi 900 without an engine and with little understanding of such messy, imbalanced engames. 😛




    Ra8+ isn't a threat but if the knight steps wrong it can become one.

    2...Nf7 3.d5 is what was planned for this. thats why I put the knight on c8 to be there to blockade the queening square.... but it still seems like d5 can be dangerous after 2.Nc8 because of a potential pin and win.


    I might be missing even more than you because I also have no engine and I'm still a lowly 1600! 😛
  14. 02 Aug '12 19:16 / 1 edit
    4. Ng4!

    Well spotted, I completely overlooked that move. I think the best followup would be something like this:

    Originally posted by tomtom232


    ... with a different BB vs. R endgame. 5... f3 looks interesting. White gets to keep the pawn, but maybe not for long. I'm not sure if I'd take that over the ending that happened in the game, with the fixed, symmetrical pawn structure.
  15. Subscriber Marinkatomb
    wotagr8game
    07 Aug '12 21:28
    Originally posted by danilop
    In one of my most recent games on RHP, I found myself struggling with one rook against two minor pieces in the ending. After I sacrificed my extra pawn to exchange the last pair of knights, we ended up in the following position:

    [fen]4R3/8/2k2bp1/3b1p1p/5P1P/6P1/7K/8 w - - 21 65[/fen]

    A draw was agreed here, but I'm not sure if my opponent (black) made ...[text shortened]... really a draw or does black have a shot at winning here by preparing to advance with his king?
    A flat draw as long as white keeps the black King cut off from the kingside. That said, i can't really see any way for black to create a passed pawn without sacraficing something. Considering the white King is already covering the Queening squares for all three pawns i'd say that evn that would fail.. For that matter it's only black who has an attackable weakness...blunders aside it's a draw.