35 ( +1 | -1 )
Rook endgame for review
Today at yahoo I (as White) had gone into interesting position (after 68th Black's move; threefold repetition at this position and a draw. White's time: 1:39, Black's - 3:01):
White: Kg3, Ra7, f3, f5, g2, g4
Black: Ke7, Rd7, e5, f6, g7, h6
Has White any chance there?
Note: We about 30 moves went around that position without any progress (no one wanted to risk).
115 ( +1 | -1 )
I think this is a draw...
...though my endgame skills are not what they should be. After 1. Rxd7+ Kxd7 (because I don't think there's a lot of maneuvering do be done there), white can neither take out the base of black's pawn chain (2. Kh4 Ke7 3. Kh5 Kf7 4. g3 Kf8 and the black K can oscillate on the eighth rank) nor move around to the left and get in through easily through the back (after 2. Kf2 Kc6 3. Ke3 Kc5 4. Ke4 Kc4 there is a kind of opposition and the W King can't get around the corner.
In this second position, though, after a 5. g3, I think black needs to make a key choice:
1) Try to hold white back with 5. ... Kc5. This gets interesting after 6. f4 exf4 7. Kxf4 Kd5 8. Ke3 Ke5 9. Kf3 h5 10. gxh5 Kxf5 11. g4+ Kg5, but my gut tells me this position is drawn.
2) Try to himself get behind the white king with 5 ... Kc3. Here white can easily hold black off with 6 Ke3 and so on (opposition). But should white wish to play for more he may get into real trouble: Kc2 7. f4? exf4+ 8. Kxf4 Kd2 9. Kf3 Ke1 10. Ke3 Kf1 11. Kf3 Kg1 12. Ke3 Kg2 13. Kf4 Kf2 and white loses the g2 pawn and probably the game.
But of course, there's probably some not-so-subtle something I missed; and anyway, it's a whole lot easier to look at these things with plenty of time and computer assistance. I think you made the right call.