Thursday, March 12, 2009

Fascinating Endgame

At the chess club Monday night one of the players showed me this really interesting endgame position he reached last Friday evening. He is Black in the position below.



He had 40 seconds left, and his opponent offered a draw, which he accepted. He couldn't find the win. An old endgame book he looked at, concluded it was a draw. The Nalimov (thank you Temposchlucker for the correct spelling!) tablebases say it a win for black with mate coming in 19 moves. I tried playing both sides of the position against Fritz 10. The best I did defending as White was last 15 moves before getting mated. Playing the Black side I couldn't get it done. In one line I stalemated White when Fritz sac'ed its' rook. Another line I repeated the position.

Tomorrow I will put up some of the different variations from both sides. In the meantime, have some fun with this and see if you can win as Black, or defend as White.

11 comments:

Temposchlucker said...

Nalimov tablebases, that is.

Polly said...

Thank you. I will fix the spelling.

liquideggproduct said...

White offered the draw? How much time did White have left?

Polly said...

LEP: I'm not sure. More time then Black! Black had less then a minute, which is why White offered the draw. It's very easy for black to force a draw. Winning is harder. Playing the position out against Fritz 10 I've yet to win as Black. I keep repeating or in one case I got a stalemate. If I was playing with 40 seconds, and tried to find the win, I probably would have lost on time.

Temposchlucker said...

The correct spelling of Blunderprone is Temposchlucker:)

liquideggproduct said...

Makes sense. At first I was going to write about how White pulled off a psychological victory, but then realized White may have been good on time.

@Temposchlucker: Well, it's close!

Polly said...

Look at what time I responded. I guess I have to fix the post again! :-)

Temposchlucker said...

@LEP, indeed I'm blunderprone.

Polly said...

I'm blunderprone too, which is why I can't win this ending. :-)

Soapstone said...

Perhaps you should ignore these links until you write your analysis, but Dana and I have tried to cover this. Warning: craziness ahead.

http://www.danamackenzie.com/blog/?p=315

http://soapstonesstudio.blogspot.com/search/label/Endgame%20Obsessions

Polly said...

Soap: That's quite an eyeful of analysis. None of the lines I tried against Fritz 10 went that long. When I played the White side there were several times where Fritz resigned, but I couldn't figure out why.