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A First Prize Winning Ending Study From 2017

How quickly can you work out white's winning plan here? This is a good one.

8/5p2/8/4K1P1/5p2/7P/4R1p1/1k4r1 w - - 0 1

1.Rxg2 (is worth looking) Rxg2. 2.Kxf4 and now with proper play(white may win or draw)

It took me 11 minutes to solve it.

1.Ke4 Rh1
2.Rxg2 Rxh3
3.Kxf4 Rh1
4.Rf2 Re1
5.Kg4 Re7
6.Kh5 Kc1
7.Kh6 Rc7
8.Rf5 Kc2
9.Kg7 Kd3
10.Rxf7 Rc1
11.g6 Kd4
12.Kf6 Rf1+
13.Ke7 Re1+
14.Kf8 Ra1
15.Rd7+ Kc3
16.g7 Rf1+
17.Rf7 Ra1
18.g8=Q Ra8+
19.Kg7 Rxg8
It's a winning position for white.

Arein22 1.Ke4 f5+ doesn't fail because of taking the pawn en passant.

Alena, you and I have different ideas about what "solved" means. What about black's options at move 1?

Arein, It isn't crazy to look at 1.Rg2, but sacrificing the rook for the two pawns is hopeless to hold even a draw for white- the time it takes the white king to get to the f7 pawn, or just to get the king into a position to exchange it for the white g-pawn takes too long, and the white king can't advance the h-pawn without black putting the rook behind it tying the white king to it just to protect it.

Yes, you are right Yancey. I solved the easiest variation of this puzzle.

Yes it is,But if black blunders a move then the game is over.Ke4 is the correct one


1.Ke4! Kc1
2.Kf3 Rh1
3.Kxg2 f3+
4.Kxf3 Kd1
5.Rf2 Rxh3+
6.Ke4 Rh7
7.Ke5 Ke1
8.Rf5 Ke2
9.Kf6 Kd3
10.Rb5 Ke4
11.Rb7 Rh1
12.Rxf7 Rf1+
13.Kg7 Rg1
14.g6 Ke5
15.Rb7 Ke6
16.Rb6+ Ke7
17.Kg8 Rh1
18.g7 Rh2
19.Rb4 Rh1
20.Rf4 Rg1
21.Kh7 Rh1+
22.Kg6 Rg1+
23.Kh6 Ke6
24.Kh7 Rh1+
25.Kg8 Ke5
26.Kf8 Kxf4
It's a win for white.


1.Ke4 f3
2.Kxf3 Rd1
3.Kxg2 Rd8
4.Kg3 Rd3+
5.Kg4 Rc3
6.Rf2 Rc4+
7.Kh5 Rc7
8.h4 Kc1
9.Kh6 Kb1
10.Kg7 f5+
11.Kg6 Rc6+
12.Kh5 f4
13.Rxf4 Rc5
14.Kg4 Rc1
15.g6 Rh1
16.h5 Kc2
17.Rf3 Rg1+
18.Kf5 Ra1
19.g7 Ra8
20.Kg6 Kc1
21.Rf8 Ra6+
22.Kh7 Ra7
23.Kh8 Ra5
24.g8=Q Rxh5+
25.Kg7 Rg5+
26.Kf6 Rxg8
It's a win for white.


1.Ke4 f5+
2.Kf3 Rf1+
3.Kxg2 Rd1
4.Kf3 Rh1
5.Rg2 Rf1+
6.Ke2 Rh1
7.g6 Kc2
8.g7 Rxh3
9.Rg1 Re3+
10.Kf2 Re8
11.g8=Q Rxg8
12.Rxg8 Kc3
13.Kf3 Kb2
14.Kxf4 Kc3
It's a win for white.

It took me one hour to solve these variations.

Ok, Alena, this is much better. Now focus on V-2 in this critical line- 1.Ke4 Kc1! 2.Kf3 Rh1 3.Kg2! f3 4.Kf3. You now need to consider one more option for black here at move 4 that isn't a transposition of any other line you discussed.

1.Ke4 Kc1!
2.Kf3 Rh1
3.Kxg2 f3+
4.Kxf3 Rxh3+
5.Kg4 Kd1
6.Re6 Rh2
7.Rf6 Rg2+
8.Kf5 Rf2+
9.Ke5 Rg2
10.Rf5 Ke2
11.Kf6 Ke3
12.Kxf7 Rb2
13.g6 Ke4
14.Rh5 Rb7+
15.Kg8 Rb2
16.g7 Rb8+
17.Kh7 Rb7
18.Kh8 Rb8+
It's a win for white.The sixth move is hard to find.