27 August 2015


I am working through a book that had been collecting dust on my shelf for a few years. Nikolay Minev, A Practical Guide to Rook Endgames (2004) offers an informative discussion of tactical elements and strategic elements in the first chapter, which comprises half of the book. The tactical elements listed are skewer, double attacks, pinning, deflection, far-advanced pawns, and stalemate. He describes each of these elements in simple terms and then with reference to rook endings from actual play.

This position is the last one in the section on skewer. It occurred in Vasiukov -- Dzindzichashvili, Soviet Championship 1972.

White to move


  1. Nice problem. Easy to solve since the theme is known. The Minev book is on my very short list to acquire in the near future when I'm ready to start working on rook endgames seriously.

    1. h7! Kf7 (1... Rxh7 2. Rb7+ Kf6 3. Rxh7 +-) (1... Kd7 2. Rb8 Rxh7 3. Rb7+ +-
    ) 2. Rb8 Rxh7 3. Rb7+ Kg6 4. Rxh7 Kxh7 5. Kd2 Kg7 6. Kxd3 Kf6 7. Kd4 +-

    1. Minev's book is blissfully short with many positions in the first half like this position: both simple and instructive. He shows how the simplest ideas are present in positions with more things going on. It strikes me, so far, as a very good book for building essential skills.

      I've spent a little time working through some of the rook endings in Dvoretsky. Minev seems a good prerequisite to Dvoretsky.