Exceedingly Tough Rook and Pawn Ending

Can you find the only winning move for white?

This is a tough ending, bordering on inhuman. It is derived from a longer study that Gonzalez created, but this position is likely the one from which he constructed the composition working backwards. There are a few natural looking moves that only draw with best play- you really should start there and understand how black draws afterwards- then try to find the winning move for white.

8/6P1/2kp3K/8/4R2p/6r1/8/8 w - - 0 1

Comments (11)
No. 1-11
Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

V-1 is the main line. Well done.

Alena
Alena

V-1

1.Re1! Kd5
2.Kh7 Kd4
3.Re6 h3
4.Rxd6+ Ke5
5.Rh6 Kf5
6.Rh4 Kg5
7.g8=Q+ Kxh4

The Nalimov tablebase shows that it's a winning position for white.

V-2

1.Re1! Kd5
2.Kh7 h3
3.g8=Q+ Rxg8
4.Kxg8 Kc4
5.Kf7 d5
6.Ke6 d4
7.Ke5 d3
8.Ke4 d2
9.Rd1 h2
10.Ke3 Kc5
11.Kxd2 Kd4
12.Rh1 Ke4
13.Rxh2 Ke5
It's a winning position for white.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

However, 1.Re1 is the right start.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

Same note I gave to Dave who never replied- 1. ....Kd5 is a tougher defense to overcome.

Alena
Alena

1.Re1! Kc5
2.Re8 h3
3.g8=Q Rxg8
4.Rxg8 h2
5.Rg5+ Kd4
6.Rh5 Ke4
7.Kg5 d5
8.Kg4 d4
9.Kg3 d3
10.Kf2 d2
11.Ke2 d1=Q+
12.Kxd1 Kf3
13.Rxh2
It's a winning position for white.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

Of course, but do look at this line in detail: 1.Re3? Rg4! 2.Kh7 Kc5!! 3.Re4! Rg3! White can repeat moves with 4.Re3 or take the offered pawn at h4. Investigate that to see how black draws- black uses two threat to keep the balance- the advance of the d-pawn supported by the black king and bringing the black king to e6 and f7 in lines in which white tries to shield the g-pawn with the rook- it is those defenses that white has to find a way defuse with the first move (including, of course, the advance of the h-pawn).

Alena
Alena

Is my first move incorrect?

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

V3 is the key line after 1.Re3. 2.....Kc5 wins an important tempo for black. You should investigate 3.Re4 which again offers the rook sacrifice, but you will find that black can put the rook on g3 again and offer the h-pawn sacrifice in return. It leads to a fairly well understood ending that is drawn.

Alena
Alena

V-1

1.Re3! Rg4
2.Kh7 h3
3.g8=Q Rxg8
4.Kxg8 d5
5.Rxh3 Kd6
6.Rh5 Kc5
7.Kf7 Kc4
8.Ke6 d4
9.Kf5 d3
10.Ke4 d2
11.Rd5 Kc3
12.Ke3 d1=Q
13.Rxd1 Kc4
It's a winning position for white.

V-2

1.Re3! Rxe3
2.g8=Q h3
3.Qc4+ Kb7
4.Qf4 Re5
5.Qf3+ Kb6
6.Qxh3 Kc6
7.Qc8+ Kd5
8.Kg6 Re6+
9.Kf5 Re5+
10.Kf6 Re4
11.Qa8+ Kd4
12.Qc6 d5
13.Qb6+ Kc4
14.Kf5 Rd4
15.Qc6+ Kb3
16.Qc1 Re4
17.Qc5 Rc4
18.Qxd5
It's a winning position for white.

V-3

1.Re3 Rg4
2.Kh7 Kc5
I'm struggling with V-3.

Yancey_Ward
Yancey_Ward

Editor

Dave, you will want to look into 1.....Kd5! before calling a solution.

DaveCubby
DaveCubby
  1. Re1! h3, 2. Kh7 d5, 3. g8=Q Rxg8, 4. Kxg8 d4, 5. Kg7 Kd5, 6. Kf6 d3, 7. Kf5 h2, 8. Rd1! Kd4, 9. Kf4 Kc3, 10. Ke3 Kc2, 11. Rh1! d2, 12. Rxh2 and White wins by pinning Black d-pawn


SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment
SusanPolgar
EditorSusanPolgar
New Comment