Practical Rook Endgames

Tue, 2014-05-27 12:09 -- IM Max Illingworth
[Event "Oceania Zonal"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2009.06.22"]
[Round "5.7"]
[White "Ambrus, Endre"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B01"]
[WhiteElo "2375"]
[BlackElo "2243"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/p3k3/8/2pP4/2P3K1/2P5/P5r1/7R w - - 0 37"]
[PlyCount "49"]
[EventDate "2009.01.13"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

{In this blog post I'll look at some interesting rook endgames from my playing
experience.} 37. Kf5 {White wants to keep his king as active as possible, and
this combined with his better rook and extra pawn (including a protected
passed pawn) is enough to give him a winning position.} Rf2+ (37... Rxa2 {will
be similar to the game.}) 38. Ke4 Rxa2 ({or} 38... Re2+ 39. Kd3) 39. Rh7+ Kd6
40. Rh6+ Kd7 41. Rh7+ {Repeating the position twice to emphasise White's
superiority.} Kd6 42. Rh6+ Kd7 43. Rc6 Ra5 {Saving the c5-pawn, but White's
rook dominates the game and that proves decisive.} (43... Ra3 44. Rxc5 Rxc3 45.
Kd4 Ra3 46. Rc6 {is winning for White - the connected passed pawns are way too
strong.}) 44. Ke5 Ra3 45. Rxc5 Rxc3 46. Kd4 Ra3 47. Rc6 {Now everything is
easy for White.} Ra1 48. Rh6 a5 49. Rh7+ Kc8 50. c5 a4 51. c6 a3 52. d6 Kb8 53.
Rh8+ Ka7 54. c7 Rd1+ 55. Ke3 a2 56. Ra8+ Kxa8 57. c8=Q+ Ka7 58. Qc7+ Ka8 59.
Qa5+ Kb7 60. Qb4+ Kc8 61. Qg4+ 1-0 
[Event "Gold Coast Open"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2009.06.27"]
[Round "4.3"]
[White "Lazarus, Benjamin"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "C13"]
[WhiteElo "2102"]
[BlackElo "2243"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "6r1/pp2kp2/4p3/2P5/4KPPp/P7/2P5/6R1 b - - 0 35"]
[PlyCount "65"]
[EventDate "2009.10.07"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

35... Kd7 {This endgame is more interesting than the previous one - White has
the more active king, but Black is better because of his superior pawn
structure, and his superior rook - the White rook is tied to g4, and Black can
get behind his passed pawn with ...Rh8 (rooks behind passed pawns!) But of
course, we should examine the pawn endgame:} (35... Rxg4 36. Rxg4 f5+ 37. Kf3
fxg4+ 38. Kxg4 Kf6 {In fact, this endgame is winning for Black because he will
get to the queenside pawns before White. I have no idea why I didn't realise
this during the game as I know I saw the ...Rxg4 tactic.} 39. Kxh4 ({or} 39. c6
bxc6 40. Kxh4 Kf5 41. Kg3 e5 42. fxe5 Kxe5 43. Kf3 Kd4 {and White loses the
c-pawn and with it, the game.}) 39... Kf5 40. Kg3 e5 41. fxe5 Kxe5 42. Kf3 Kd4
43. Ke2 Kc3 44. Kd1 Kb2 45. a4 Ka3 46. a5 a6 {and Black will pocket White's
pawns to win.}) 36. g5 (36. Kf3 h3 37. Kg3 Rh8 38. Kh2 {was the correct
defence, as after} Kc6 39. Rd1 Kxc5 40. Rd7 {White saves himself via. keeping
his rook active. Piece activity is as important as material on the board in
rook endgames!}) 36... Rc8 (36... h3 37. Kf3 Rh8 38. Rh1 Kc6 39. Kg3 h2 (39...
Kxc5 40. Rxh3 Rxh3+ 41. Kxh3 b5 42. Kg4 b4 43. axb4+ Kxb4 44. f5 exf5+ 45. Kxf5
{is also a draw.}) 40. Rxh2 Rxh2 41. Kxh2 Kxc5 42. Kg3 Kd5 43. Kg4 Ke4 44. a4 {
and Black can't win:} a5 45. c4 b6 46. Kg3 Kd3 47. f5 exf5 48. Kf4 Kxc4 49.
Kxf5 b5 50. axb5 Kxb5 51. Kf6 a4 52. Kxf7 a3 53. g6 a2 54. g7 a1=Q 55. g8=Q) (
36... Rh8 {and ...Kc6 was probably best.}) 37. Kd4 {A strange blunder.} (37.
Rh1 Rh8 38. Kf3 Kc6 39. Kg4 Kxc5 40. Rxh4 Rxh4+ 41. Kxh4 Kd4 42. Kg4 Ke4 {
transposes to the note to 36...h3 and as we know, is a draw.}) 37... Ke7 (37...
h3 38. Rh1 Rh8 39. Ke5 h2 40. Kf6 Rh7 41. g6 fxg6 42. Kxg6 Rh3 43. Kf6 {leaves
Black unable to make progress.}) 38. Rh1 Rd8+ 39. Kc4 Rc8 40. Kb5 Rh8 41. Rh3 (
41. c6 bxc6+ 42. Kxc6 h3 43. c4 h2 44. c5 {was a simpler route to the draw,
getting counterplay immediately.}) 41... Kd7 42. a4 Kc7 43. Kc4 Kc6 44. Kd4
Rd8+ 45. Ke4 Kxc5 {Obviously exchanging this weakling for the strong h4-pawn
is crazy - I overpressed for a win.} 46. Rxh4 Rd4+ 47. Ke5 Rd5+ 48. Kf6 Rf5+
49. Ke7 a5 {This move takes the winning attempts to ridiculous lengths.} (49...
Kd4 50. Rh7 e5 51. fxe5 Kxe5 52. Rxf7 Rxg5 {and a basic draw is correct.}) 50.
Rh7 Rxf4 51. Rxf7 Rxa4 52. g6 Rg4 53. g7 e5 54. Kf6 e4 (54... b5 55. Re7 Kd4
56. Re8 e4 57. g8=Q Rxg8 58. Rxg8 e3 {was the correct way to get the draw;
compared to the note on White's 55th move (55.Re7!), Black gains vital time.})
55. Kf5 (55. Rf8 a4 56. g8=Q Rxg8 57. Rxg8 a3 $11 {is just a draw, but}) (55.
Re7 Kd4 56. Kf5 Rxg7 57. Rxg7 e3 58. Kf4 $18 {wins for White, as the White
king gets back in time to stop Black's pawns.}) 55... Rg1 56. Kxe4 {Now it's
just a draw again.} b5 57. Kd3 a4 58. Kc3 b4+ 59. Kb2 Rg2 60. Rc7+ Kb6 61. Rf7
b3 62. Rf6+ Kc5 63. Rf5+ Kd6 64. Rf6+ Ke5 65. Rc6 Kd4 66. g8=Q Rxg8 67. cxb3
axb3 {It should be mentioned that the time control for this game was 60+10 (so
both players were on a 10 second increment).} 1/2-1/2 
[Event "Commonwealth Open Championships"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2009.12.13"]
[Round "7.1"]
[White "Ashwin, Jayaram"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B12"]
[WhiteElo "2448"]
[BlackElo "2211"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/2R3p1/7p/p2pk3/1r6/1P4P1/P4P1P/4K3 b - - 0 30"]
[PlyCount "65"]
[EventDate "2009.10.07"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

{The following endgame had a happy finish for me, although there's no way I
should win this under normal circumstances.} 30... a4 {As I'm down in material,
I was happy to exchange pawns.} 31. Rxg7 axb3 32. axb3 Rxb3 {I have just
liquidated all the queenside pawns to reach the following rook ending, where I
am down a pawn and about to lose the h6-pawn, but have a powerful passed
d-pawn and the significantly more active king. I had the clock on my side - my
opponent was already in serious time trouble, which affected his later
decisions.} 33. Rg6 Ke4 (33... h5 34. Rg5+ Ke4 35. Rxh5 d4 {runs into} 36. Rc5
Kd3 37. f4 Rb1+ 38. Kf2 Rb2+ 39. Kf3 Rxh2 40. g4 {and now that White's
connected passers are moving along, he will beat Black's passed d-pawn, which
in the worst case he can give the rook for to promote one of his two passers.}
Rh3+ 41. Kg2 Rh8 42. Kg3 Kd2 43. f5 d3 44. Kf4 Ke2 45. Re5+ Kf2 46. Rd5 Ke2 47.
f6) 34. Re6+ (34. Rxh6 d4 35. Rc6 {with similar play to the note to move 33
was more precise; after} Rb1+ 36. Kd2 Rb2+ 37. Rc2 Rb3 38. h4 Kf3 39. Kc1 {the
only thing stopping White from winning is Black's blockade of the connected
passed pawns.} d3 40. Rd2 Kg4 41. Ra2 Kf3 42. h5 Rb5 43. Kd2 Rxh5 44. Kxd3 Rd5+
45. Kc4 Rd7 {and despite the two extra pawns, White can't win because his king
is unable to support the pawns advance (being cut off by Black's rook).} 46.
Kc3 Rd6 47. Rd2 Rc6+ 48. Kd3 Rd6+ 49. Kc2 Rc6+ 50. Kd1 Re6 {and White can't
make progress.}) 34... Kd4 (34... Kf3 35. Rf6+ Ke4 {was a smarter continuation.
}) 35. Rxh6 Kd3 36. Kf1 (36. f4 d4 37. Re6 Rb1+ 38. Kf2 Rb2+ 39. Kf3 Rxh2 40.
f5 {would just win for White, no questions asked.}) 36... d4 37. Rd6 ({Correct
is the immediate advance of the passers:} 37. g4 Kc2 38. g5 d3 39. Rc6+ Rc3 40.
Rd6 Rc8 41. g6 d2 42. h4 d1=Q+ 43. Rxd1 Kxd1 44. h5 {and the connected passed
pawns are too powerful for one rook.}) 37... Rb1+ 38. Kg2 Kc3 {Now the d-pawn
is very fast, and Black proves able to hold his own in the resultant rook vs.
pawns race.} 39. h4 d3 40. Kf3 d2 41. h5 d1=Q+ 42. Rxd1 Rxd1 {This should just
be a draw, but remarkably White blunders it away later.} 43. g4 Kd4 44. Kf4 Rf1
45. f3 Kd5 46. h6 {An unbelievable error, letting Black blockade the pawns 
(which is far more important than the number of pawns).} (46. Kg5 Rxf3 47. h6
Ke6 48. Kg6 {was the way to draw, keeping Black's king cut off.}) 46... Ke6 47.
Kg5 Kf7 48. f4 Rh1 49. f5 Rh2 {White can't hold the third pawn, and then the
rest is easy now that Black has blockaded White's pawns with his king.} 50. Kf4
Rxh6 51. g5 Ra6 (51... Rh1 $1 52. Kg4 Rf1) 52. Kg4 Ra5 53. Kf4 Ke7 54. Kg4 Rb5
55. Kf4 Kd6 56. g6 Ke7 57. Kg5 Kf8 58. Kf6 Rb6+ 59. Kg5 Kg7 60. Kg4 Kf6 61. Kh5
Kxf5 62. g7 Rg6 0-1
[Event "Canterbury Summer Swiss"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2009.12.29"]
[Round "6.1"]
[White "Morris, James"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A13"]
[WhiteElo "2200"]
[BlackElo "2264"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "3r2k1/5pp1/7p/p2P4/1p1p4/P5P1/1P3P1P/2R3K1 b - - 0 25"]
[PlyCount "59"]
[EventDate "2009.10.07"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

25... bxa3 26. bxa3 Rxd5 {Obviously Black has the winning chances in this
endgame due to the extra pawn, but White can blockade it easily, so in
practice this should be drawable.} 27. Kf1 d3 (27... f6 28. Ke2 Rb5 29. Kd3
Rb3+ 30. Kxd4 Rxa3 {was a better way to pose problems.}) 28. Rd1 g5 29. f3 {My
opponent offered a draw with this move, which is a bit surprising.} f5 30. h4 {
White is playing the endgame like a middlegame - not the way to draw!} (30. Kf2
f4 {(else Ke3)} 31. gxf4 gxf4 32. Ke1 {makes further progress problematic, e.g.
} Re5+ 33. Kd2 Re3 34. Rb1 Rxf3 35. Rb5 a4 36. Ra5 Kf7 37. Rxa4 Kg6 38. Ra6+
Kg5 39. h4+ Kxh4 40. Rxh6+ Kg4 41. a4 {and Black is too tied up to the defence
of his d3-pawn to win:} Rf2+ 42. Kxd3 Ra2 43. Ra6 f3 44. a5 f2 45. Rf6 Kg3 46.
Rg6+ Kf3 47. Rf6+ Kg2 48. Rg6+ Kf1 49. a6 {is also just a draw.}) 30... gxh4
31. gxh4 f4 {This is a waste of a tempo.} (31... Kf7 32. h5 Kf6 33. f4 Rd4 34.
Ke1 Re4+ 35. Kd2 Rxf4 36. Kxd3 Kg5 {was the obvious way to win.}) 32. Ke1 Kf7
33. Kd2 Kg6 34. Re1 (34. Rg1+ Kh5 35. Rg4 Rd4 {is a funny trebuchet between
the White rook and Black king. And yet, White can still draw:} 36. Kd1 d2 37.
a4 Rxa4 38. Kxd2 Re4 {A creative try, intending the advance of the a-pawn, but
it isn't enough:} 39. Kc2 a4 40. Kb2 a3+ 41. Ka1 Re1+ 42. Ka2 Re2+ 43. Ka1 Rh2
44. Rxf4 Rxh4 45. Rf8 Rh2 46. Ra8 Kg5 47. Rxa3 h5 48. Ra4 h4 49. Kb1 h3 50.
Rg4+ Kf5 51. Rh4 {and as Black's king cannot get past the White fortress to g3,
it is a draw.}) 34... Kh5 35. Re4 Rf5 {A ridiculous mistake, as the d3-pawn is
obviously much more valuable than the f4-pawn.} (35... Kxh4 36. Rxf4+ Kg3 {
followed by advancing the h-pawn was the easy way to win.}) 36. Kxd3 Kxh4 37.
Re6 Kg5 {Now White can draw easily with 38.a4, but the comedy of errors
continued...} 38. Ke4 Rc5 {Finally a good move on my part - Black intends ...
Rc4 to kick White's king away.} 39. Re8 Rc4+ 40. Ke5 Kh4 41. Rg8 h5 42. Kf5 Ra4
43. Rg1 Rc4 44. Rg8 {According to my records White offered another draw here,
which is surprising as Black is clearly winning by advancing his king and
h-pawn down.} Kh3 45. Rg5 h4 46. Rg4 Kh2 47. Kg5 (47. Rxh4+ Kg3 48. Rh8 Kxf3 {
gives Black a decisive passed pawn, as White has failed to blockade the passer.
}) 47... h3 48. Kh4 Rc8 49. Rxf4 Rh8+ 50. Kg4 Kg2 51. Rc4 h2 52. Rc2+ Kf1 53.
Rc1+ Kf2 54. Rc2+ Ke3 0-1
[Event "Australian Championships"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2010.01.04"]
[Round "3.8"]
[White "Rej, Tomek"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "A58"]
[WhiteElo "2364"]
[BlackElo "2248"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "r4k2/5p1p/6p1/3P4/5P2/6P1/2R1K2P/8 b - - 0 38"]
[PlyCount "21"]
[EventDate "2010.01.07"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

38... Ra5 {I've included this game just to show that this position with an
extra passed d-pawn for White is a very easy draw for Black. You want the
extra pawn as far away from the pawns on the other side of the board as
posible, so it is easier to deflect the opponent's king/rook away from the
protection of their pawns.} 39. Rd2 Ke7 40. Kf3 Kd6 41. Kg4 h6 42. f5 Rxd5 43.
Rxd5+ Kxd5 44. Kf4 Kd4 45. h4 Kd5 46. g4 Kd4 47. fxg6 fxg6 48. h5 gxh5 1/2-1/2 
[Event "Australian Championship"]
[Site "NSLCC, Cammeray, NSW"]
[Date "2010.01.08"]
[Round "6.8"]
[White "Illingworth, Max"]
[Black "Wallis, Christopher"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A28"]
[WhiteElo "2248"]
[BlackElo "2246"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/1K6/8/1P4pk/8/R7/8/1r6 b - - 0 58"]
[PlyCount "29"]
[EventDate "2010.01.02"]
[EventRounds "11"]
[EventCountry "AUS"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

58... Rxb5+ {I probably should have resigned the game at this point, but at
least by not resigning I have a practical example to show of how to win by
reaching the 'Lucena' position - with the king in front of a pawn one square
from queening - and then building a bridge for the king to walk out on, so the
rook may block the checks and the pawn may queen.} 59. Kc6 Re5 60. Kd6 Re1 61.
Kd5 Kh4 62. Kd4 g4 63. Kd3 g3 64. Kd2 Re8 65. Ra7 Kh3 66. Rh7+ Kg2 67. Rg7 Kh2
68. Kd1 g2 69. Rh7+ Kg1 70. Kd2 Re5 71. Kd3 Kf2 72. Rh2 Kf1 0-1
[Event "NSW Championships"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2011.06.14"]
[Round "5"]
[White "Illingworth, Max"]
[Black "Berezin, Victor"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B15"]
[WhiteElo "2372"]
[BlackElo "2370"]
[Annotator "Illingworth,Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/8/6pk/p6p/P2R4/1P5P/4r1PK/8 b - - 0 47"]
[PlyCount "60"]
[EventDate "2011.06.14"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

47... Re3 48. Rd5 Rxb3 49. Rxa5 {Although White has an a-pawn (the ideal
scenario), he can't win because White doesn't have an f-pawn he can use to
decoy Black's king even if White were to somehow get a position with his White
rook on a8, pawn on a7, and a g or h-pawn left against a Black rook on the
a-file and a Black king on g7 or h7.} h4 50. Ra8 Ra3 51. a5 Kg5 52. a6 Ra2 53.
a7 Ra1 54. g4 Ra3 55. Kg2 Ra1 56. Kf2 Ra3 57. Ke2 Ra1 58. Kd2 Ra3 59. Kc2 Ra1
60. Kb2 Ra5 61. Kc3 Ra1 62. Kd4 Rd1+ 63. Ke5 Re1+ 64. Kd6 Rd1+ 65. Ke6 Ra1 66.
Kf7 Ra5 67. Kg7 Ra3 68. Kh7 Ra6 69. Kg8 Ra3 70. Kf7 Ra2 71. Ke6 Ra1 72. Kd5 Ra2
73. Kc5 Ra1 74. Kb6 Rb1+ 75. Ka5 Ra1+ 76. Kb4 Rb1+ 77. Kc3 1/2-1/2 
[Event "Queenstown Chess Classic"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2012.01.22"]
[Round "8.10"]
[White "Illingworth, Max"]
[Black "Garbett, Paul Anthony"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "E20"]
[WhiteElo "2388"]
[BlackElo "2290"]
[Annotator "Illingworth,Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/4k2p/4p3/1pr5/3p2K1/P2P4/4R2P/8 w - - 0 41"]
[PlyCount "10"]
[EventDate "2012.01.21"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

41. Kf4 {This game was a really strange one: I blundered multiple times, only
for my opponent to offer a draw when in a winning position.} Kd6 42. Rb2 Rh5
43. Ke4 {Not the most tenacious defence, to say the least, but I think White's
position is objectively losing anyway.} ({Doing absolutely nothing with} 43.
Rb1 {didn't help either:} h6 44. Rb2 Kc5 45. Rc2+ Kd5 46. Rb2 Rf5+ 47. Kg4 Kc5
48. Rc2+ Kd6 49. Rb2 h5+ 50. Kg3 Re5 51. Rd2 Rc5 52. Kh4 Rc3 53. Kxh5 Rxa3 {
and the passed b-pawn is much stronger than White's passed h-pawn. Black
should win.}) 43... Rh4+ 44. Kf3 Rh3+ 45. Ke4 Rh4+ {I was quite stunned by
Black's draw offer and took it instantly.} (45... e5 46. Rxb5 Re3+ 47. Kf5 Rf3+
48. Kg5 Rxd3 {was a very simple win, pointed out by Klaus Bischoff after the
game.}) 1/2-1/2 
[Event "NSW Championship"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2012.06.19"]
[Round "4"]
[White "Illingworth, Max"]
[Black "Charles, Gareth"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B48"]
[WhiteElo "2344"]
[BlackElo "2179"]
[Annotator "Illingworth, Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "4r1k1/1p4p1/p4pP1/3R4/8/P1P5/1P6/2K5 b - - 0 30"]
[PlyCount "70"]
[EventDate "2012.07.21"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

30... Kf8 {This position is obviously equal, but it's interesting to see the
scope one has to outplay the opponent even in an equal endgame. Of course, it
helped a lot that both players were entering the time trouble phase.} 31. Kd2
Ke7 32. Ke3 Ke6 {Now I saw 33.Rh5 with a draw, but I figured Gareth wasn't
going to be prepared for a sudden change in the position. So like the biblical
figure Solomon I went for the plunge.} 33. Kd4 $1 Rh8 34. c4 $1 {Both
objectively bad moves - but they succeed in creating winning chances and cause
Black to lose his way.} Rh2 35. Kc3 {One step back in order to leap forward
with the rook!} Rg2 36. Rd8 Rxg6 37. Rb8 {Now blood is guaranteed to be
spilled!} b5 {Gareth's intuitive side reached for the rook, but with a couple
of seconds on his clock panic took over and he rushed the pawn.} (37... Rg3+
38. Kc2 Rg2+ 39. Kc3 f5 40. Rxb7 f4 {was the obvious and strong continuation,
gaining a big head start in the upcoming race.}) 38. cxb5 axb5 39. Rxb5 {But
37...b5 was a big mistake, since now I have connected passers whereas earlier
I would have had to rely on the c-pawn only to make my buck for the day.} Kd6
$11 {Draw offered. I have 13 minutes, he has one, the trend of the game is
going my way. So of course I declined.} 40. a4 Kc6 {The rest of the game isn't
flawless by me, but my opponent tried to defend far too passively and this
cost him the game.} 41. b4 Rg3+ 42. Kd4 Rg4+ 43. Ke3 Rg3+ 44. Kf4 {Marching
the king towards the enemy pawns was the only attempt I had left to confuse my
opponent.} Rc3 45. Kf5 Ra3 (45... Rc4 46. Kg6 Rg4+ 47. Kf7 f5 {was drawing
easily - White will have to run his rook away to stop Black's pawn queening,
after which all the pawns are hoovered off.}) 46. Rc5+ Kb6 47. a5+ Kb7 48. Rb5+
Ka7 {White has made a fair bit of progress now and the drawing margin has
narrowed.} 49. Rb6 Ra1 50. Ke6 Rb1 (50... Rd1 {to cut my king off was much
easier.}) 51. Kd5 f5 (51... g5 52. Kc5 Rc1+ 53. Kb5 Rc8 54. Rxf6 Rg8 {,
getting the rook behind the passed pawn to tie up White's rook to defence, was
another way to draw.}) 52. Kc5 (52. Ke5 Rf1 53. b5 f4 54. Ra6+ Kb8 55. Ke4 g5
56. Rg6 Re1+ 57. Kd4 f3 {sees Black get counterplay just in time to draw.})
52... Rc1+ 53. Kb5 Re1 54. Rd6 Re7 55. Kc6 (55. a6 Re5+ 56. Ka4 f4) 55... Ka6 (
55... Rf7 {was again a lot easier.}) 56. Kc5+ Kb7 {Even with all the
inaccuracies before, it is only here that Black makes the decisive mistake.} (
56... Ka7 {holds the draw because now a6 doesn't come with check, and} 57. b5
f4 58. b6+ Kb7 {sees Black blockade the pawns (Kb5 Re5) to draw.}) 57. b5 (57.
a6+ Ka7 58. b5 {was even simpler, intending Kb4-a5.}) 57... Rc7+ 58. Kd5 (58.
Rc6 {would have been much, much simpler:} Rxc6+ 59. bxc6+ Kc7 60. a6 Kb8 61.
Kd6) 58... Re7 (58... Rf7 59. Ke6 Rf6+ 60. Kd7 Rf7+ 61. Ke8 {still wins,
luckily.}) 59. a6+ Ka7 60. Kc5 f4 61. Kb4 f3 62. Ka5 Re5 63. Rd7+ Kb8 64. a7+
Ka8 65. Ka6 1-0 
[Event "Istanbul Chess Olympiad"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2012.09.07"]
[Round "10.24"]
[White "Fernandez, Daniel Howard"]
[Black "Illingworth, Max"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "E61"]
[WhiteElo "2370"]
[BlackElo "2360"]
[Annotator "Illingworth,Max"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/p2R4/1p4k1/2p2p1p/P1r5/4P2P/6P1/6K1 w - - 0 45"]
[PlyCount "52"]
[EventDate "2012.08.28"]
[Source "Max Illingworth"]
[SourceDate "2008.10.04"]

45. Rxa7 {To make sure you've absorbed the concepts I've gone through, try
analysing the following game, which gave me my IM title. Enjoy, and have a
good week!} Kf6 46. Ra6 Ke5 47. Rxb6 Rxa4 48. Kf2 Ke4 49. Re6+ Kd3 50. Kf3 c4
51. Rd6+ Kc2 52. g4 hxg4+ 53. hxg4 fxg4+ 54. Kxg4 c3+ 55. Kf5 Kb3 56. Rd1 c2
57. Rh1 Ra5+ 58. Ke6 Rc5 59. Kd6 c1=Q 60. Rxc1 Rxc1 61. e4 Rd1+ 62. Kc6 Re1 63.
Kd5 Kb4 64. e5 Kb5 65. Kd6 Kb6 66. e6 Rd1+ 67. Ke7 Kc7 68. Kf7 Rf1+ 69. Ke8 Kd6
70. e7 Re1 0-1