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Ulf Andersson vs Florin Gheorghiu
Moscow (1981), Moscow URS, rd 11, Apr-20
English Opening: Symmetrical Variation. Two Knights Line (A37)  ·  1/2-1/2


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Dec-10-06  babakova: Impressive stuff.
Dec-10-06  Billy Ray Valentine: Was there a missed win at any point?
Dec-10-06  chessmoron: Another good analysis!
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: And good heavens--I finally went 7 for 7 on the week's puzzles, and on the fifth birthday, too.
Dec-10-06  Madman99X: Surely black is better after the exchange of white squared bishops?
Dec-10-06  MarioBalibrera: I liked this week's puzzles--a bit easier than usual, perhaps, but it was nice to have some pawn play for once.
Premium Chessgames Member
  dzechiel: This is deep stuff. I didn't understand the nature of the position. I thought that black could draw with a simple 47...Kc6. I'm looking forward to Monday.
Dec-10-06  Archives: <I thought that black could draw with a simple 47...Kc6.>

Yea, same here.

Dec-10-06  Marcelo Adaes: I liked the week theme too. Very good, Chessgames!

What about a miniatures week?

Dec-10-06  Jay Mantorin: I must be missing something, but why is this a draw?

After 47. Kxf5 black has to play Kg3 (or any other move). 48. Kg5 and black is stuck, unable to take the white pawn and unable to defend the black pawn.

Please enlighten me. Thanks!

Premium Chessgames Member
  sfm: So white offered a draw after 57.Kxf5. Rightly so, with a man who found 47.-,f4!! there's no justification in hoping he'd blunder on his last move.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: <Jay Mantorin> 57...Ke3! 58. Kg5 Ke4 59. Kxh5 Kf5 60. Kh6 Kf6 61. Kh5 Ke7 62. Kg5 Ke8 63. Kg6 Kf8 secures the draw. (= 0.00 by Shredder)

If 57...Kg3 you are correct, white wins in that case.

Dec-10-06  black knight c6: <Jay Mantorin> (assuming by 47. Kxf5 you mean 57)The problem is even though even though white will win black's pawn, he is left with a pawn on the side of the board, which is always a draw if the black king can get ahead of or on the side of the pawn. The reason for this can be easily seen from playing it out:

57. ... ♔e3
58. ♔g5 ♔e4
59. ♔xh5 ♔f5
60. ♔h6 ♔f6
You can probably see the black king here will always block the white king in, always on the h-file. Therefore with the white king always on the h-file, the pawn will never be able to get past! therefore, a draw. But what about moving the pawn?

61. h5 ♔f7
62. ♔g5 ♔g8
Hey presto! the white king escapes the h-file! (remember if he doesn't it will be a draw) But now An important observation can be made to secure the fact of a draw: The black king has now reached g8, and will also reach h8. For the rest of the game now, he will alternate between these two squares. Therefore, as he is on the side of the board, the white king will never be able to protect the queening square, h8 and the game will be a draw. If (probably when) a postion happens such as White King g6, white pawn h6, black king g or h8 and the white pawn wants to advance, h7, either the King will be in h8 with nowhere to go, stalemate; or will move from check at g8 to h8, and will have nowhere to go the next move. Either the white king will have to move away and let black take his last pawn, or move h6 (or other square in protection of the pawn) and stalemate the black king.

There you go, thats some standard king vs. king and pawn theory. Maybe try and find a book or site which can teach about such simply endgame theory, it can prove very useful and is the basic endgame knowledge upon which pretty much all of us build!

Dec-10-06  greensfield: Only a few starting moves, you can analise all the variations, so I thought. Discarded all except 47...Kc6 & 47...f4 & thought they both ended in draws. Missed 48. f4! for White win.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <Jay Mantorin: I must be missing something, but why is this a draw?>

This is perhaps the most important special case with a Rook pawn. The next several moves would be: 57...Ke3 58.Kg5 Ke4 59.Kxh5 Kf5=. The lateral opposition against a King in front of its own passed pawn on the a- or h-file (if that is the only pawn left on the board) is sufficient to hold the draw. After 59. Kf5, further play could run as follows: 60.Kh6 Kf6 61.h5 Kf7 62.Kh7 Kf8 63.Kg6 Kg8 64.h6 Kh8 65.h7 (stalemate) .

Dec-10-06  thorndeux: Like many here, I looked at 47...f4 but went for 47...♔c6 in the end. I have to admit, though, that I don't see the win at the end of <Raskolnikov>'s line. Although the white ♔ does reach the g6-♙, the black ♔ gets the g3-♙ in the same move (51.♔c7 ♔c5 52.♔d7 ♔d5 53.♔e7 ♔e4 54.♔f6 ♔f3 55.♔xg6 ♔xg3)

Position after 55...♔xg3

click for larger view

Now White can choose which ♙ to take and will probably go for the f5-♙, while Black eats the h4-♙. The only winning idea I can see for White now is to force the black ♔ to the h-file after the promotion of pawns in order to win the ♕ on h1, but I can't make it work.

Where did I miss the win?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <thorndeux> In the diagram position, white doesn't take any of the pawns, but plays 56.Kg5(!)
Dec-10-06  2021: <thorndeux> Here is a line: 56.Kg5 Kf3 57.Kxf5 Kg3 58.Kg5 Kf3 59.f5
Dec-10-06  Grampmaster: Missed it. I thought 47...Kc6 gave Black winning chances.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I missed this one? What's new,it's a Sunday!
Dec-11-06  thorndeux: <2021><Eyal> Brainfart on my side, thanks for pointing that out.
Dec-25-18  DonChalce: Gheorghiu was a thug.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Eyal: <thorndeux> In the diagram position, white doesn't take any of the pawns, but plays 56.Kg5(!)>

I have a hazy recollection of this fairly simple idea being overlooked in another game between two top-class GMs.

Dec-25-18  Retireborn: <perfidious> That happened in this game:-

Korchnoi vs Petrosian, 1974

Would certainly be interested to see other example, if any.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Retireborn>, that is indeed the game.

Must be losing a step. (laughs)

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