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Murali Karthikeyan vs Pavel Eljanov
Qatar Masters (2014), Doha QAT, rd 1, Nov-26
Spanish Game: Exchange. Normal Variation (C69)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Nov-26-14  shakh.i.shekh: Good endgame puzzle after white's 52 move!
Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: < shakh.i.shekh: Good endgame puzzle after white's 52 move! >

I agree!

An endgame puzzle here, less crowded board, OCB ending, equal material, draw.

Nope! Now even though I missed the Wednesday puzzle, I got the Thursday puzzle. 53...g4, and black pushes through on the h-file.

The line I thought of was 54.hxg4, which I would then reply with 54...hxg3. :|

However, if OTB, my opponent played 54.gxh4, I would've played 54...gxh3, so technically, I got the puzzle.

Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Traditional Thursday endgame. First establish that Brute Force fails: 53...Bg2 54.gxh4 gxh4 55.Kf4 followed by 56.Kg5 and Black's last pawn comes off.

I wonder if this is one of those situations where you put the pawns abreast and go for the outside passer? Let's see: 53...g4 54.hxg4 h3 ... White can't there from here. And, of course, 54.gxh4 gxh3 is essentially the same thing.

That would leave 54.Kf2 gxh3 55.Kg1 hxg3, and 56...h2+ wins.

Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tiggler: <shakh.i.shekh: Good endgame puzzle after white's 52 move!>

You are right. It's a little obvious after white's 53rd.

Dec-17-15  nalinw: I don't understand White's

52. Bxc3 - seems to just lose a piece.

52. Bc1 holds things for the moment - of course the position is lost in the long run.

Dec-17-15  stst: tricky, hxg3 is tempting, but try instead

53..............g4, looks like either way, White cannot stop the queening:

(A)
54.hxg4 h3
55.Kf2 h2 and the K could not get closer blocked by Black B's diagonal to h1

(B)
54.gxh4 gxh3
55.Kf2 h2
56.Kg3 h1=Q

see if other tricks are in the bag...

Dec-17-15  patzer2: Found this Thursday puzzle solution quickly. Figured if it's Thursday and an endgame puzzle, the solution must be a surprising and unexpected move.

The most surprising and unexpected move I could find was 53...g4!, and lo and behold it worked.

Dec-17-15  sfm: 51.-,c3!!,
a brilliant move.
Black will of course have seen the obvious
52.Lxc3(!),LxL??
53.gxh,gxh
54.Nxd5
with the wrong-coloured bishop giving White an easy draw. But 52.-,LxS+!
Pretty little thing.

Agreed, this puzzle should have been given moves earlier and days later.

Dec-17-15  Olsonist: Kind of a locked room mystery. The king and the bishop are of the highest moral character. The h pawn wouldn't get very far. So I'm pretty sure it's the butler with the bloody hands, g4.
Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: The material is identical, with opposite colored bishops.

If Black's h-pawn reaches h2 the white king wouldn't be able to control h1. This invites to play 53... g4:

A) 54.hxg4 h3 55.Kf2 (55.g5 h2 56.g6 h1=Q wins) 55... h2 followed by 56... h1=Q.

B) 54.gxh4 gxh3

B.1) 55.Kf2 h2 as in A.

B.2) 55.Be5 Kxe5, etc.

B.3) 55.h5 h2 56.h6 h1=Q, wins.

C) 54.Kf2 gxh3 55.Kg1 hxg3 followed by 56... h2 and 57... h1=Q, etc.

D) 54.Kf4 gxh3 55.gxh4 h2, wins.

Dec-17-15  patzer2: White's decisive mistake appears to be 34. Nb4?, allowing 34...a5! (-1.85 @ 27 depth, Deep Fritz 14).

Instead, 34. Bd4 (+1.07 @ 26 depth, Deep Fritz 14) offers White drawing chances.

Though not the most popular option, It would appear 5...Qf6 is a simple and effective move which easily equalizes for Black in the exchange variation of the Ruy Lopez.

For an improvement over 8. Qxd4 =, I slightly prefer 8. Nxd4 = as in Naiditsch vs Efimenko, 2015.

Dec-17-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: Super easy for a Thursday. There's really nothing else to try, once you see why hg doesn't work.
Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Side puzzle.

If black pays 52...hxg3+, below, instead of the text 52...Bxe3+, does he still win?


click for larger view

Dec-17-15  kubbybulin: Sacrificial pawn breakthroughs! 53...g4! and black gets an unstoppable h-pawn no matter white's reply.
Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: It is slightly odd, isn't it, that black gets a passed h-pawn no matter what white plays.
Dec-17-15  diagonalley: cute!... but knowing there must be a win for black, it's not difficult to find the right move via a process of elimination :-)
Dec-17-15  kevinatcausa: Jimfromprovidence: My instinct is no. White plays Kxg3 and plans to push the h pawn next turn. Black can win a piece, but it'll be irrelevant with no pawns left on the board.
Dec-17-15  vodkaboris: One of the easiest Thursdays for a while. White needs to promote the 'h'-pawn as it will be immune from Black king and bishop. So all he has to do is force the issue and create that passed pawn one way or another. There've been harder Mondays than this.
Dec-17-15  gofer: Poor old white. This should be a simple draw, but something has gone horribly wrong...

<53 ... g4!>

Doh! White can resign, whatever white does black is going to get a passed pawn on the h file and no way to stop it!

54 gxh4 hxg3
55 Kf2/Be1 h2

54 hxg4 h3!
55 Kf2/Be1 h2

54 Kf2 gxh3
55 Kg1 hxg3! (gxh4 h2)
56 Any move h2+/h2

Now that's gotta hurt after 50+ moves...

~~~

I take it back, white never saw the combination coming! Black sacrifices a pawn and the bishop pair trading to an end game with different coloured bishops, but the passed pawn is assured.

Nice play by black!!!

Dec-17-15  saturn2: I got this one qickly. After 53...g4 one of the black pawns has only three tempos to queening whilst black has four. 54 Kf2 also fails because of black's light squared bishop
Dec-17-15  morfishine: <53...g4> is a well-known theme: Black gets a pawn to <h3> and thats the end of that

*****

Dec-17-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: I knew that ...g4 tactics but only in pure ♙endgames. Well oc♗endgames are like ♙endgames. Sometimes at least.
Dec-17-15  RonB52734: This is probably my first Thursday solution ever. Shout-out to my friend Clyde, who is great at endgames and loves to teach. If you're in Pittsburgh and play chess, you know Clyde.
Dec-17-15  TheaN: <kevinatcausa: Jimfromprovidence: My instinct is no. White plays Kxg3 and plans to push the h pawn next turn.>

Basic concept for white, yes, but straight away it doesn't work. 52....hxg3+ 53.Kxg3 Bxc3 54.h4? Be1+ . Not to say that is the end of it all, because the knight can become a huge nuisance, white isn't forced to play h4 and the struggle is more nasty than after 52....Bxe3+!, which essentially sets up the puzzle move by force.

Dec-17-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: There are a number of opposite-colored bishop endings that can't be won with a 2-pawn advantage, and many more that can't be won with a one-pawn advantage. (Perhaps the endgame tablebase mavens could supply some numbers on this.) Here is an opposite-colored bishop ending where pawns are even and the defending king is within the square of the most remote enemy pawn. Yet black can force promotion with

53... g4! and white is out of luck:

A. 54.hg h3 55.Kf2 h2 promotes.

B. 54.gh gh 55.Kf2 h2 is similar.

C. 54.Kf2 gh 55.Kg1 hg 56.any h2+ promotes next move.

This (as Andy Soltis wrote in a recent column) is why we like chess.

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