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Geza Maroczy vs Siegbert Tarrasch
San Sebastian (1911), San Sebastian ESP, rd 3, Feb-23
Spanish Game: Open Variations. Schlechter Defense (C80)  ·  1/2-1/2
ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-21-12  vinidivici: This is so easy...i dont know why white missed the easy win.

44.Rxh2!! if 44...Kxh2 then
45.Ka6, b-pawn would promote and cost the blacks rook.

Aug-21-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Maybe he missed black's defense Rc1+ and Rc4 expecting only 44...h1Q+ 42.Rxh1 Rxh1 43.b5 Ra1 44.b6 Rxa5 45.b7

It is also interesting to note that 44.Rxh2 Kxh2 45.Ka6 wins just by one tempo. If black King would stay on g3 instead of h2, then the ending would be draw with the best play.

Aug-22-12  vinidivici: <Honza Cervenka> Yeah, but with just a few pieces left on the board and not necessarily the most studied rook pawn ending, one can calculate easily without any problem.

Maybe Maroczy had the time trouble then had it done in rush.

Aug-22-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Sometimes even grandmasters with exceptional endgame technique like Maroczy can become blind for a while. Idea Rc1+ with next Rc4 with double threat Rxb4 and Rh4 is not so obvious at first glance and to start the whole sequence with a Rook check is a bit counterintuitive here. Remember Tarrasch's famous maxim on Rook placement behind passed Pawns...:-)
Aug-22-12  RookFile: The one thing Tarrasch had working for him going into the ending was a better king position. He had insufficient compensation for the pawn, but played well in the ending and earned himself a half point when Maroczy made a slip.
Aug-22-12  vinidivici: He missed the sacrifice maybe that concludes what Capablanca had said about Marcozy

"As a chessplayer he was a little lacking in imagination and aggressive spirit."

Oct-18-12  drunknite: I have a very good idea of just how he may have missed this as we can assume Marcozy was well acquainted with standard endgame positions. Most everyone knows that very simple rule with K/p ending: You usually need your K to be ahead of your pawn and in opposition to the opponents K. Right? Everyone knows this...

NOW also even more important (Higher priority) is another rule: With pawn on 4th rank (here the b pawn); if your K gets to a6 or b6 or c6, its an auto win (if he cant take your pawn) But if pawn is on 5th or 6th rank, your K can be anywhere in the 2x3 rectangle formed by a6---c7. Got that?

GM Geller once gave a beautiful example goes something like this: place white K on e5, his pawn on c4; and black K on c8. NOW: if you move Ke6 that does place K in opposition and your K ahead of your pawn. But if you play Kd6 that puts the K in the magic 3 square area for the pawn on 4th rank. Ke6 draws; Kd6 wins.

That is why we have the second rule for situations like that.

Now OK go back to white's 44th move. If you look at Rxp, then you start to calculate that you will have to move your h pawn and K will move 3 more times after the black rook sets up on the back rank. This gives blacks K, 3 more moves (includng the move right after Kxa8 ....)

So blacks rook takes on a8 and whites K takes on a8. Now where will blacks K be? If he gets to move 3 moves from g3 he will end up on d5 and whites K on a8. So white to move, he can get his K to a7 but just short of the magical 3 square strip (rule for 4th rank pawn) and black's K now moves to c4 and will get the last pawn.

Right? that is the perfect example similar to one Geller gives where the K is ahead but not in the magic line or magic rectangle. Because Marcozy has to know about this rule...

Except blacks K didnt start that sequence from g3 did he?

I.e. set up the board again on whites 44th and put black K on f4 and pawn on g3 and white rook on g8. If white plays Kxp, blacks K will get back in time to catch the last pawn.

So I think when Maroczy was looking at first side of the board and then the other and he is counting how many moves blacks K will get to make, and he looks back to where the black is when sequence starts and sees him standing on g3 (forgetting that the squence really starts after KxR on h2)

It looks like he just misplaced the black K in his mind before looking at RxP. Because he looks at one side of the board; the a8 sector and starts to count moves from there and then looks back to the other side of the board and sees K on g3 (forgetting that rxp and KxR on h2) )

Seems quite possible.

Oct-18-12  Dr. J: Doesn't 25 f5 win a piece?
Oct-18-12  thomastonk: <Dr.J> No, 25 f5 is a good move, but doesn't win a piece. 25.. gxf5 26 Rxf5 (26 gxf5 Rg8! =) 26.. f6 27 Rxe6 Rxe6 28 Nxe6 Kxe6 29 Ra5 Rd8 30 Rxa6+ wins a pawn, but Black has excellent drawing chances with his active king, or 26.. Rg8!? 27 Rxf7+!? Ke8 28 Rf6 Rxg5 29 R1xe6+ Rxe6 30 Rxe6+ Kf7, and again White is a pawn up, but Black's drawing chances are okay, again.
Oct-18-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Dr. J: Doesn't 25 f5 win a piece?> After <25.f5 gxf5 26.gxf5> you have the tactical counter-pin with <26...Rg8>! which holds the game


click for larger view

e.g. 27.h4 h6 28.fxe6 f6! 29.Rd5 hxg5>


click for larger view

<30.Rd7+ Kf6 31.Rf7+ Kg6 31.hxg5 Rxe6!=>


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Nov-20-12  LUCHO RODRI: En esta partida se destaca la importancia de atacar a los peones con torre por retaguardia como lo hizo Tarrasch y tener un un rey activo le valio las tablas!!genio!!
Feb-19-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: "Fundamental Chess Endings" by Muller & Lamprecht (pp. 166-167) gives the winning line after 44. Rxh2! Kxh2:


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"1. Ka6!! <1. a6? (1. Kb6? Kg3! 2. a6 comes to the same thing) Kg3! 2. Kb6 Kf4! 3. b5 Ke5! 4. a7 Kd6 5. Kb7! Kc5 (the typical drawing technique: the rook is sacrificed for the more advanced pawn and the king keeps an eye on the backward one) 6. b6 Kb5 7. Kc7 Ra6 => Kg3 2. b5! Kf4 3. b6! Ke5 4. b7! Rb1 5. Ka7! Kd6 6. b8Q+! "


click for larger view

Like <Honza> said, White wins by a single tempo.

Aug-08-16  Straclonoor: Win position to white appears immediate after 7 pieces was in rest of table. Line from Lomonosov table base after 39.Kxc4:
39... h5 40. b4 Rc1+ 41. Kd4 Ra1 42. Rb6 h4 43. Rh6 h3 44. Kc5 Ra2 45. Kb6 h2 46. a6 Rd2 47. Rxh2 Rxh2 48. a7 Rh6+ 49. Ka5 Rh3 50. b5 Ra3+ 51. Kb6 Kf4 52. Kb7 Re3 53. a8=Q Re7+ 54. Kb6 Rd7 55. Qb8+ Kf3 56. Qb7+ Rxb7+ 57. Kxb7 Ke3 58. b6 Kd3 59. Kc6 Kc3 60. b7 Kd3 61. b8=Q Ke3 62. Kd5 Kd3 63. Qe8 Kc3 64. Qe3+ Kc2 65. Kc4 Kb2 66. Qe2+ Kb1 67. Kc3 Ka1 68. Qb2#
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