Lesson 7 by Igor Epshteyn

UMBC, room ECS 023, 4-15-99

Notes by David Joyner. (No claim to completeness.)

Theme: Combining plans in the endgame. The knight’s route revisited and variations on Reti’s etude.

In the dynamic case, time and tempi are extremely important. Another important factor is the ability to forsee, through calculation, a favorable queen endgame. We will also see how useful the previously discussed rules and principles are (rule of the square of the passed pawn, principle of deflection, …).

“Chess is often a tragedy of a one tempo.”

– Igor Epshteyn

Position 7.1: Famous Richard Reti study, 1921. Surely, you’ve seen this before, but we begin with this study since the ideas will occur in positions which will arise later as well.

This looks hopeless for white since the white king is 3 tempi from the black passed pawn whereas black’s king is already in the square of the white passed pawn. However, the white king can choose a route which responds simultaneously to 2 goals: (1) to approach his own passed pawn to possibly aid in its promotion, (2) to approach the square of the opponents passed pawn.

In Forsyth notation:

```7K/8/k1P5/7p/8/8/8/8
```

White to play and draw.

1. Kg7 h4 2. Kf6 Kb6 3. Ke5 and white draws.

Position 7.2: Blumenfeld study, 1926.

The Reti etude and the following one both illustrate the idea of a multiple goal in the endgame. In the following study, the white king will choose a route which responds simultaneously to 2 goals: (1) to approach his own passed pawns to possibly threaten checkmate, (2) to approach the square of the opponents passed pawn.

In Forsyth notation:

```4k3/4P3/3P3p/8/8/8/K7/8
```

White to play and win.

1. Kb3 h5 2. Kc4 h4 3. Kd5 Kd7 4. Ke4 and white wins.

Position 7.3: Vojcik study, 1957.

In Forsyth notation:

```8/8/1p5K/8/8/7P/8/6k1
```

White to play and win.

First, white cannot win the pawn race. If he simply tries to queen as fast as possible, black will queen too and the result will be a draw.

1. Kg5 b5 2. Kf4 Kf2 3. h4 Ke2 (by the way, 3 … b4 loses) 4. Ke4 Kd2 5. Kd4 Kc2 6. Kc5 Kc3 (now the black king is one the “wrong square”) 7. h5 b4 8. h6 b3 9. h7 b2 10. h8=Q+ and white wins.

Position 7.4: Prokesh study, 1947.

Very elegant study containing some interesting and important ideas.

In Forsyth notation:

```3K4/7p/3k4/P7/8/8/8/8
```

White to move and draw.

1 a6? loses (1 … Kc6 2. Ke7 h5 and black wins). 1. Kc8! Kc6 2. Kb8! Kb5 3. Kb7 (gaining a tempo) Kxa5 4 Kc6 h5 5. Kd5 and the game will end in a draw since the white king is in the square of the passed pawn.

Homework

Solve the following problems.

1. Position 7.5: Rink study, 1922.

The white king is not on h3 (as in the Reti etude, with the board flipped) but on h2, so g1 is possible at some point. (If the white king was on h3 then I think this would be a draw.)

In Forsyth notation:

```8/8/8/8/8/P4p2/k6K/8
```

White to play and win.

solution below

2. Position 7.6: Moravec study, 1952

In Forsyth notation:

```3k4/7p/8/2P5/K7/8/8/8
```

White to play and draw.

solution below

3. Position 7.7: Frits study, 1954

In Forsyth notation:

```8/7p/2K5/8/2P5/8/4k3/8
```

White to move and win.

solution below

4. Position 7.8: Grigoriev study, 1933

In Forsyth notation:

```8/5K1p/8/8/8/8/1P6/7k
```

White to move and win.

solution below

5. Position 7.9: Prokesh study, 1937

In Forsyth notation:

```8/8/4K3/P7/7p/8/7k/8
```

White to move and win.

solution below

Homework solutions:

1. 1. a4 Kb3 2. a5 Kc4 3. a6 Kd3 4. a7 f2 5. a8=Q f1=Q 6. Qa6+ and white wins skewers the black queen. 1. a4 Kb3 2. a5 Kc3 3. Kg1 and white wins.
2. 1. Kb5 h5 2. Kc6! (threatening Kb7) Kc8 3. Kd5 and white is in the square of the passed pawn, so the game is drawn.
3. 1. Kd5 h5 (1 … Kd3 and white wins the pawn race 2. c5 h5 3. c6 h4 …) 2. Ke4 Kf2 3. Kf4 Kg2 4. c5 (4. Kg5? draws because of 4 … Kg3! 5. Kxg5 Kf4 and black’s king is in the square of the passed pawn) h4 5. c6 h3 6. c7 h2 7. c8=Q h1=Q 8. Qc2+ Kh3 9. Qd3+ Kg2 10. Qc2+ and white wins.(See also Position 7.9 for a similar theme.)
4. The pawn race leads to a draw: 1. b4? h5 2. b5 h4 3. b6 h3 4. b7 h2 5. b8=Q draw. 1. Kf6 Kg2 2. b4 h5 3. Kg5 (driving the black king to a bad square) Kg3 4. b5 h4 5. b6 h3 6. b7 h2 7. b8=Q+ Kg2 8. Qb2+ Kg1 9. Kg3 h1=Q 10. Qf2#
5. Amazing transition into a winning queen endgame. 1. Kf5 h3 2. Kg4 Kg2 (forced) 3. a6 h2 4. a7 h1=Q 5. a8=Q+ Kg2 6. Qb2+ Kf1 (forced) 7. Qc1+ Kg2 8. Qc1+ (zig-zagging closer to the black king) Kg2 9. Qd2+ Kf1 10. Qd1+ Kg2 11. Qe2+ Kg1 12. Kg3 and mate next move!