More endgames from Stavanger

by Karsten Müller
6/12/2022 – A number of remarkable endgames from the Norway Chess tournament have caught the eye of GM Karsten Müller. In the four games included in this article, our in-house specialist shows examples of pawn races with rooks still on the board, the need to find precise roads in pawn endgames and how to keep a king from escaping a sequence of checks with rook and knight. | Photo: Lennart Ootes / Norway Chess

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Races and king roads

Following a nervy final round, Magnus Carlsen claimed his fifth Norway Chess title in Stavanger. For spectators, it was an entertaining event to follow, but it was also a great chance to learn from the very best in the world.

In the round-8 Armageddon game between Carlsen and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, the latter had three pawns for a rook in the ending. MVL could have held a draw, to win the tiebreaker, had he found the correct king road on move 53.


Where to go with the king? The Frenchman faltered by playing 53...Kg5, when 53...Kf5 was forced, to invade via e4 or g4. The devil is in the details!

Also in round 8, but in the classical game, Aryan Tari could have saved a draw with black against Anish Giri.


White’s passer on the g-file is extremely dangerous, but Black could defend by preventing the opposite king from escaping the checks with the rook and knight tandem. Tari decided to play 57...Nd2+, but it was 57...Re1+ what was called for in this position!

Find the aforementioned positions and two more instructive analyses in the replayer below.


Chess Endgames 14 - The golden guidelines of endgame play

Rules of thumb are the key to everything when you are having to set the correct course in a complex endgame. In this final DVD of his series on the endgame, our endgame specialist introduces you to the most important of these rules of thumb.


Karsten Müller is considered to be one of the greatest endgame experts in the world. His books on the endgame - among them "Fundamentals of Chess Endings", co-authored with Frank Lamprecht, that helped to improve Magnus Carlsen's endgame knowledge - and his endgame columns for the ChessCafe website and the ChessBase Magazine helped to establish and to confirm this reputation. Karsten's Fritztrainer DVDs on the endgame are bestsellers. The mathematician with a PhD lives in Hamburg, and for more than 25 years he has been scoring points for the Hamburger Schachklub (HSK) in the Bundesliga.