Daily Chess Improvement: Insanely Hard Endgame!

White to move and win. This is extremely difficult. I am not sure if any human can actually solve it :)

GM Ray Robson was checking this out earlier today. I thought you may enjoy getting a crack at it :)

Comments (13)
No. 1-13
Surpriselover
Surpriselover

Thank you Yancey...I think I will put it on a engine tommorrow hopefully and learn the patterns.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

I had to hunt in my memory for an ending like this, and the only one I could think of was a Kasparov vs Karpov game from the 1990 Championship match round 16. Kasparov won the ending with a mating attack. However, the situation was different because both players had a pawn faced off on the g-file at g6 and g5, so there wasn't much to learn from it.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

I took deeper look at the problem in the Nalimov Tablebase, and here is my impression- white uses mate threats initially to dislodge the arrangement where the bishop protects the knight- once this is accomplished, the two black pieces are vulnerable- for example in the open board, the superior arrangement is for the bishop to protect the night since this puts both on dark squares and the white bishop has no target to aim for, but when black is forced to protect the bishop with the knight, things are less comfortable for black since it allows white to attack the knight with the bishop, and if black has the bishop attacked by the rook, the bishop or knight is lost. Indeed, in the open board, I am quite comfortable hunting the black pieces this way- it makes perfect sense to me. However, my problem is the black king- if black works to keep the pieces nearby the king, such double attacks are harder to work through.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Surpriselover- 1.Kb5 Kd8 2.Bc6 Kc8 3.Ra8?! Kc7! and now what for white? I will give you hint since I have looked this over already in the Nalimov- after 3. ....Kc7, white is in a win 73 moves version whereas with 1.Kc5, it is win in 46.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Nicely done, Alena. I don't know if you saw the earlier comment, but it was Susan's posting of that problem with the two knights vs the king and pawn that reminded me of this puzzle, and it is why I gave it to you.

Surpriselover
Surpriselover

Kb5 What for black? ...Kd8 Bc6 Kc8, Ra8+ Bb8, Kb6 and obviously this is bad for black. Kb5 Kd8, Bc6 Bd4+, Rb2 Kc7, Rd2 Be5, Kc5 and black appears to be running out of good moves. This is great studying. Point out my mistakes somebody if you want...I have run out of time for now.

Alena
Alena

Yancey, at last I have found the solution for your puzzle.
I will continue your line after 34. Nc6 Qe6.
I had to remember that two knight could mate if there were pawns.

V-1

35.Ne5 Qf5
36.Kc7 a5
37.f8=Q+ Qxf8
38.Nxf8 Ka7
39.Nfd7 Ka6
40.Kc6 a4
41.Nc4 Ka7
42.Nc5 Kb8
43.Nd6 a3
44.Kb6 a2
45.Na6+ Ka8
46.Ne8 a1=Q
47.Nec7#

V-2

35.Ne5 Qd6
36.f8=Q Qxf8+
37.Nxf8 Ka7
38.Nfd7 a5
39.Kc7 Ka6
40.Kc6 a4
41.Nc4 a3
42.Nc5+ Ka7
43.Nxa3 Kb8
44.Nc4 Kc8
45.Ne6 Kb8
46.Nd6 Ka7
47.Nc5 Kb8
48.Kb6 Ka8
49.Na6 h4
50.Ne8 h3
51.Nec7#

I can't solve Susan's today puzzle at all. I think one should know how to win rook vs bishop endings and rook vs knights endings brilliantly to win this ending.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

I looked this over in the Nalimov Tablebase and conclude it is an inhuman ending. Even looking over the key variations in the first 5 moves didn't really help me understand the plan either.

Eggman61
Eggman61

Whoops. . White posts his rook on b7, not b2

Eggman61
Eggman61

black's bishop/knight combo is formidable ... but I think this might work: post the bishop on c6 and the rook on b2. The rook and bishop have the black king confined to c8 and d8. Then white moves his king around the entire board, down to g2 and h3, h4, g5 and finally f5. From there, the king can drive the black bishop off of e5. The Black bishop at that point is forced to give up defending either the knight or the d6 square.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Alena, did you look at that key position I alerted you to on the big puzzle?

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

I have looked at this off and on for an hour now, and I still don't have an idea of even a half-assed plan for this. Like Alena, I would be looking for a mate threat, but the truth is I just don't see one here- for example, if white tries 1.Kc6, black just plays 1. ....Kd8- the knight/bishop combo has the white king cut off from d7-d4. I wonder if there is a way to force the black knight to the edge on a dark square and trap him there with the bishop- for example, the knight on f8 with the white bishop on f5. One might combine such a trapping theme with attacks on the bishop/king to win the knight. However, again, I just don't see how to do that.

Alena
Alena

I think one should use the threat of the mate to win the knight or bishop.



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