White to move. Is it a win or draw? Please analyze deeply. This is a must know R & P endgame.
I mean 1....Kg7. My bad.
At least I understand how to demolish 1. Ke3 - 1...Re1+ and then 2...Re6. Once the R gets to the 6th rank "far enough" from the b-file, it can just sit there until the White K gets "too close" to the a-pawn then checks it along ranks until the K has to come back to the d-file. And the reason that 1' Ke2! is therefor necessary is that now 1...Kg2 2. Kd3 Rdi1 and the White K is on the c-file before the black rook gets to the 6th rank. and on the d-file, the R can be attacked by the K and the Black K can't defend it.
This ending is a relative to a problem Alena might well remember because it was the first problem I remember the two of us interacting over as she solved it.
Just to make my point clearer- in the most tenacious line, the white king will make more than journey towards the pawn- he will have to return to the kingside at one point before returning to defend the pawn.
Dave, 1....Kg6 offers the most resistance, but the point about the a7 square being open to the white king is one of the two most important points about this ending. You should ask yourself why it has to be 1.Ke2 and not the visually similar 1.Ke3- what changes when white plays the mistaken move?
- Ke2!!! (Marching to a7) Ra3, 2. Kd2 Kg6, 3. Kc2 Ra1, 4. Kb2 Ra5, 5. Kb3 Ra1, 6. Ra8! (Leaving a7 available for White King)