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Endgame Corner

Karsten Müller


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Domination Distance, Part Two

In this column I present the solutions to last month's exercises and highlight the domination distances on the way.

E153.01 Shabalov, Alexander (2534) – Sargissian, Gabriel (2679)
Chicago Open Wheeling (6), 27.05.2012

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/4b3/8/8/p7/1k1K4/2N5 b - - 0 102"]

How did Black exploit the poor position of White's knight?

102...Bc4 0-1

White resigned as the bishop corrals the knight: 103.Kd1 Kc3 104.Ke1 Kc2-+.

E153.02 Sponheim, M (2073) – Holm, S (2256)
22nd ZMDI Open 2013 Dresden GER (9.30), 18.08.2013

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/2R5/1n6/5K2/8/8/5k2/8 w - - 0 82"]

White to move and win.

White must separate Black's forces with 82.Ke4!

After 82.Ke5? Ke3!, Black's forces can connect; e.g., 83.Rc3+ Kd2 84.Kd4 Na4 85.Ra3 Nb2 86.Ra2 Kc2=.

82...Ke2 83.Kd4

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/2R5/1n6/8/3K4/8/4k3/8 b - - 0 83"]

Knight check shadow.

83...Kd2 84.Rb7 1-0

E153.03 Kuling, L (2246) – Deviatkin, A (2569)
Groningen Open A Groningen NED (1.5), 22.12.2012

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/8/2p1P3/8/k3K3/6n1/8 w - - 0 80"]

How did Kuling's king save the draw?

Kuling's king saved the day with 80.Kd2!!

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/8/2p1P3/8/k7/3K2n1/8 b - - 0 80"]

The king dominates the knight with the Karpov distance.

However, neither 80.Ke4? Nh4 81.Kd5 Kb4 82.e6 Ng6-+ nor 80.Kd3? Kb3-+.


80...Kb2 is answered by 81.e6 c4 82.e7 c3+ 83.Kd3 c2 84.e8Q c1Q 85.Qb5+=.


Kuling's king really works wonders!

81...Ne6 82.Kc4 Ka4 83.Kd5 Kb3 84.Kxe6 c4 85.Kf7 c3 86.e6 c2 87.e7 c1Q 88.e8Q Qc4+ 89.Qe6 Qxe6+ ½-½

E153.04 Rosen, E (2280) – Sadorra, J (2483)
College Final Four 2013 Rockville USA (2), 06.04.2013

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/2K5/8/3kP1p1/6N1/8/8 b - - 0 81"]

Black to move and draw.

Black saved himself with 81...Ke5!

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/2K5/4k3/4P1p1/6N1/8/8 w - - 0 82"]

Bodycheck and knight check shadow.

82.Kd7 Kf4 83.Kd6 Kxg3 84.e5 Kf2 85.e6 ½-½

E153.05 Wang, Hao (2731) – Nepomniachtchi, Ian (2733)
73rd Tata Steel GMA Wijk aan Zee NED (2), 16.01.2011

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/5p2/8/4kb2/8/1K6/1N6 b - - 0 79"]

Black to move and win.

Black won with 79...Kd3!

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/5p2/8/5b2/3k4/1K6/1N6 w - - 0 80"]

The king dominates the knight by moving into the knight check shadow and gives a bodycheck.

80.Kb3 Be5 0-1

Black resigned; e.g., 81.Na3 f5 82.Nc4 Bd4 83.Nd6 f4 84.Nf5 f3 85.Ng3 f2 86.Kb4 Be5 87.Nf1 Ke2-+.

E153.06 Tesik, C (2299) – Chernyshov, K (2564)
XXX Zalakaros Open Zalakaros HUN (9), 28.05.2011

Endgame Corner
[FEN "2rN2R1/5p2/8/5kp1/8/1K6/8/8 w - - 0 70"]

How to get rid off the annoying pin? With 70.Nxf7 or with 70.Rxg5+.

70.Nxf7? runs into a beautiful refutation.

70.Rxg5+!? Kxg5 71.Nxf7+ Kf6 72.Nd6!

Endgame Corner
[FEN "2r5/8/3N1k2/8/8/1K6/8/8 b - - 0 72"]

Saves the day as the knight joins forces with its king. (But not 72.Nh6? Ke5! 73.Nf7+ Kd5

Endgame Corner
[FEN "2r5/5N2/8/3k4/8/1K6/8/8 w - - 0 74"]

The king moves into the knight check shadow and the dominated steed will be caught sooner or later; e.g., 74.Kb4 Rf8 75.Ng5 Rf5 76.Nh3 Kd4 77.Ng1 Ke3 78.Nh3 Rh5 79.Ng1 Rh1-+) 72...Rc6 73.Nc4=.

70...Rxg8 71.Nh6+ Ke6 72.Nxg8 g4

Endgame Corner
[FEN "6N1/8/4k3/8/6p1/1K6/8/8 w - - 0 73"]

A tragicomical picture. White's king is just outside of the square and his knight is just not in time to catch the pawn.

73.Nh6 g3 74.Ng4 g2 0-1

E153.07 Gopal, G.N (2566) – Vallejo Pons, Francisco (2705)
11th Aeroflot Open A Moscow RUS (7.30), 13.02.2012

Endgame Corner
[FEN "1N6/4k3/8/6p1/2Pp2p1/8/1K6/8 b - - 0 60"]

Black to move and win.

Black wins with 60...Kd6!

Endgame Corner
[FEN "1N6/8/3k4/6p1/2Pp2p1/8/1K6/8 w - - 0 61"]

Knight check shadow.

61.c5+ Kc7!?

61...Kxc5?! 62.Nd7+ Kb5

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/3N4/8/1k4p1/3p2p1/8/1K6/8 w - - 0 63"]

Knight check shadow 63.Ne5 g3 64.Nf3 g2 65.Kc2 Kc4 66.Kd2 g4 67.Ng1 d3-+

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/8/8/2k3p1/3p4/3K2p1/6N1 w - - 0 68"]

Now the pawns dominate the knight for a change.

62.Na6+ Kc8

Endgame Corner
[FEN "2k5/8/N7/2P3p1/3p2p1/8/1K6/8 w - - 0 63"]

Knight check shadow.

63.Nb4 g3 64.Nd3 g2 0-1

E153.08 Adams, Michael (2728) – Golod, Vitali (2591)
Germany/Bundesliga 2010-2011 Germany (12), 19.03.2011

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/8/5k2/6p1/3K2P1/7P/1n3B2/8 w - - 0 78"]

White to move and win.


The bishop leaves the knight's sphere of influence.


78...Nd1 79.Kd3 Nb2+ 80.Kc3 Na4+ 81.Kb3+-; 78...Na4 79.Kc4 Ke5 80.Kb3 Kf4 81.Bh2+ Kf3 82.Kxa4 Kg2 83.h4+-.

79.Kc3 Na4+

79...Nd1+ 80.Kc2+-.

80.Kb3 Kd5 81.Kxa4 Ke4 82.Bh2 Kf3 83.Bd6 Kg2 84.h4 1-0

E153.09 Hovhannisyan, R (2610) – Vorobiov, E (2598)
Chigorin Mem Rapid St Petersburg RUS (7.5), 26.10.2012

Endgame Corner
[FEN "1R6/5p2/2P5/8/3n3k/5K1p/8/8 w - - 0 78"]

Where shall White's king go?

78.Kf4! Ne6+

78...Nxc6?! 79.Rh8#.


Endgame Corner
[FEN "1R6/5p2/2P1n3/8/7k/4K2p/8/8 b - - 0 79"]

Karpov distance. 79.Ke5? Kg3=.


79...Kg3 80.Rg8+ Kh2 (80...Kh4 81.Kf2+-) 81.Kf2 Kh1 can even be met by 82.c7 Nxc7 83.Rc8 Ne6 84.Kg3+-.

80.Kf2 Kg4

A second knight also brings no rescue: 80...h1N+ 81.Kg2 Ng3 82.Rb4+ Kg5 83.Kxg3 Kf6 84.Rb7 Nd8 85.c7 Nxb7 86.c8Q+-; 80...Kh3 81.Rb3+ Kg4 82.Kg2 Kf5 83.Rb7+-; 80...Nf4 81.Rh8+ Kg4 82.c7 Nh3+ 83.Rxh3 Kxh3 84.c8Q++-.

81.Kg2 Kf4 82.Rb7 Nd8

82...Ke5 83.c7+-.

83.c7 1-0

E153.10 Battaglini, Gabriel (2452) – Fressinet, Laurent (2696)
Corsica Masters KO 2011 Bastia FRA (1.2), 28.10.2011

Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/4k3/8/n2B1p2/5P2/2P1K3/8/8 w - - 0 51"]

White to move and win.

In the fight of bishop against knight zugzwang and dominance often play a crucial role.


Walks onto the mined square. Tiptoeing around it with 51.Kd3! wins: 51...Kd7 (51...Kd6 52.Kd4+- Zugzwang) 52.Kc2 Kd6 53.c4 Nc6 (53...Kc5 54.Kc3 Kb6 55.Kb4+-) 54.Bxc6 Kxc6 55.Kc3 Kc5 56.Kd3 Kc6 57.Kd4 Kd6 58.c5+ Kc6 59.Kc4 Kd7 60.Kd5 Kc7 61.Ke5+-.


Reciprocal zugzwang with White to move.


52.c4 opens the cage and allows a blockade on the dark squares: 52...Nb3+ 53.Kc3 Nc5 54.Kb4?! Nd3+=.

52...Nc6+ 53.Kc4 Ne7 54.Bh7

54.Bf7 Kc6 55.Kd4 Kd6 56.Be8 Nd5=.


Endgame Corner
[FEN "8/4n2B/2k5/5p2/2K2P2/2P5/8/8 w - - 0 55"]

Now the knight dominates the bishop, which occurs only very seldom.

55.Kd4 Kd6 56.c4 Nc6+ 57.Kc3 Ne7 58.Kd4

58.Kb4 Kc6 59.c5 Nd5+=.

58...Nc6+ 59.Kc3 Ne7 60.Kd4 Nc6+ ½-½

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