26 May 2019

Textbook Ending

While continuing to work my way through drawn endgames from my personal database (see "King Position"), I found that I missed a textbook win that I have taught to my chess students. However, my failure dates from 2006 and I've been teaching it since about 2014.

Reuben Fine, Basic Chess Endings (1941) offers this position (No. 40).

White/Black to move

White to move draws, Black to move wins for White.

Mark Dvoretsky, Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual (2003) offers a similar position.

White/Black to move

Again, it is only a win for White if Black is on move. The key, as Dvoretsky points out, is that White's king must occupy h6 while a pawn remains on the second rank, preserving the option of moving one or two spaces. That way, Fine's position can be forced with Black to move.

In a game on Free Internet Chess Server, I had this position.

White to move

1.Kg5 wins.

I played 1.h4 and the game was drawn.

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