What Rooks Want Survey

The FIDE trainer's commission site keeps on posting interesting educational articles.
The end of September saw my first survey, titled "What Rooks Want". Here is an fragment of it:

Pfleger,Michael (2270) - Tiemann,Christoph (2075)
BL2–Sued 0809 Germany (3.8), 30.11.2008

[If in the previous example the rook went on a passive position volunateerily, in this case it was forced:]

28.a4! Rb4 [Or else- 28...Rc5 29.c3

followed by Kc1–d2–e3–d4 when all the black pawns fall.]

29.c3 Rxa4 30.Kb1! [The rook is now locked forever on a4.]

30...h6 31.Rxd5

Let's stop for a moment to analyze the situation. There are two pictures on the board. Picture one are the completely frozen pieces on the queens-flank: the black Ra4, and pawns on a5 and c4 as well as the white Kb1 and pawns on b2, c3. They are not going anywhere and we can easily neglect them and concentrate on the other side of the board, where the white R+ 3 pawns is fighting the black K and 3 pawns. The battle is uneven though and the king has no chance.]

31...Kf8 [Another possible line is- 31...Kg7 32.h4 The pawns should help the rook find targets- 32...Kf6 33.Rd6+ Ke7 34.Rb6 Kf8 35.h5! discovers the h6 pawn. 35...gxh5 36.gxh5 Kg7 37.f5 f6 38.Rb7+ Kg8 39.Rc7

and it is zugzwang- Black will have to give up one of the f6 or h6 pawns.]

32.h4 [Not the only winning plan, but a very convincing one.]

32...Ke7 33.h5 Kf6 34.Rd6+ [34.g5+ Kg7 35.hxg6 fxg6 36.Rd7+ would also win.]

34...Kg7 35.Rc6 [White is no hurry as he knows his opponent has nowhere to go. ]

[The immediate- 35.f5 would soon lead to zugzwang as well.]

35...Kh7 36.hxg6+ fxg6 37.Rc7+ Kg8 38.f5

The rook got support and the end is close.]

38...gxf5 39.gxf5 h5 40.f6 h4 41.Rg7+ [41.Rg7+ a possible end would be- 41...Kf8 (41...Kh8 42.Rg4 h3 43.f7) 42.Rh7 h3 43.Rxh3 Kf7 44.Rf3 and Black will have sooner or later to give up the rook on a4...]

You can check the complete article here.

No comments: