Each game is a new challenge you face mostly with yourself. You know the opponent from previous games? You approach the game based on how those games in the past went on. Is the opponent someone new? What rating does it have? Where are they coming from? What results and games can be found on the internet? Then you prepare your strategy and stick with it as much as you can. If you face someone stronger you think of the worst while hoping for the best. Hey, if you play good you might be rewarded with an opportunity to exceed expectations and play for more!...
Look at the above position after White's 46.Qf1 ... move. Here are your tasks:
a) Analyse the position and decide what outcome each side can hope for;
b) What should Black respond now? Choose between 46... Qe5, 46... Qf6 or any another move of your choice
c) Write the best line showing the outcome after the Black move you chose.
Total available points for this puzzle is 25. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #136.
Puzzle #134 solution:
Game Umezinwa - Pappu, from 2001. Without any clear advantage the first reaction is not to choose the Rook endgame with material being equal. In 99.9% of cases, such endgames lead to draw. However the possible pawn endgame could be the answer. Karl has explained that very eloquently:
- Rook and pawn endgame
- Two pawns head to head
- Rook exchange possible
- Kings aren't protecting the pawns, and there's a symmetry of a sort between them
Based on instinct, I will trade Rooks, and since White moves first, it should be able to force Black to lose using zugzwang.
King activity: Even
Endgame: Rook and pawn
Looks like White is in for a Rook trade... the other option is for White to run away with the Rook, which will give Black the first move, and won't be making much progress either.
1. Rxh7 Kxh7
Trading, as planned.
2. Kd5 ...
The very common endgame zugzwang trick. Black has a number of options now. This is one of the main tries:
a) 2. ... Kh6
3. Kd6 Kh5
4. Ke7 Kg5
5. Ke6 ... wins the pawn and the game. Another idea is:
b) 2. ... Kg7
3. Kd6 Kg8
Black's best try is triangulation.
4. Ke6 Kg7
5. Ke7 ... wins the pawn and game.
The key to winning in this situation is to get to e7 before Black does, force him to defend his pawn and then put him in zugzwang. The player with opposition in this position will win."
Jeffrey, Rick, Karl - 15 points
Frank, Nathaniel - 12 points
Alex - 9 points
Karl - 175 points
Rick - 156 points
Jeffrey - 150 points
Frank - 102 points
Owen - 95 points
Edwin - 72 points
Alex - 37 points
Nathaniel - 32 points