Karsten Müller: Olympiad Endgames

by Karsten Müller
9/5/2014 – Today we start a special course, brought to you by one of the world's leading endgame experts, Dr. Karsten Müller, whom you all know from ChessBase Magazine. Even the strongest players study his didactic analyses. This course shows you how the endgame was handled by great players during the recent Chess Olympiad in Tromsø. And best of all: it's completely free!

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Endgames from the Chess Olympiad Tromsø 2014

Navara's King and Rook

Rook endings have a large drawish tendency, but often great precision is required:

[Event "41st Olympiad 2014"] [Site "Tromso NOR"] [Date "2014.08.02"] [Round "1.1"] [White "Navara, David"] [Black "Elarbi, Abobker"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D35"] [WhiteElo "2716"] [BlackElo "2283"] [Annotator "Karsten Müller"] [PlyCount "147"] [EventDate "2014.08.02"] [Source "Chess Today"] [SourceDate "2014.07.27"] [WhiteTeam "Czech Republic"] [BlackTeam "Libya"] [WhiteTeamCountry "CZE"] [BlackTeamCountry "LBY"] 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. cxd5 exd5 5. Bg5 c6 6. e3 Bf5 7. Qf3 Bg6 8. Bxf6 Qxf6 9. Qxf6 gxf6 10. Nf3 Nd7 11. Nh4 Bb4 12. Rc1 a6 13. a3 Bxc3+ 14. Rxc3 Ke7 15. g3 Rab8 16. f3 Rhe8 17. Kd2 Kd6 18. Bd3 Nb6 19. b3 Rbd8 20. g4 Nc8 21. Rcc1 Ke7 22. Ng2 Nd6 23. Nf4 Rg8 24. Rhg1 h6 25. Rg3 Bxd3 26. Kxd3 Rg5 27. a4 Rgg8 28. Rcg1 Rh8 29. Rh3 f5 30. gxf5 Nxf5 31. Rg4 Rhe8 32. Rh5 Kf6 33. Ng2 Rg8 34. Nh4 Rg5 35. Rgxg5 hxg5 36. Nxf5 Kxf5 37. h4 Rg8 38. a5 Rg7 39. hxg5 Kg6 40. Rh8 Kxg5 41. Kc3 f5 42. Re8 Kf6 43. Kb4 Re7 44. Rf8+ Kg5 45. Rb8 Kh4 46. Rf8 Kg5 47. Rg8+ Kf6 48. Rb8 Kg5 49. Kc5 Kh4 50. Kd6 Rxe3 51. Rxb7 Rc3 52. b4 Kg3 53. Rb6 Rc4 54. Rxa6 Rxb4 55. Ke5 Kxf3 56. Rxc6 f4 57. Kxd5 Ra4 58. Rc3+ Kg4 59. Ke4 Rxa5 60. Rc8 {Navara's King and Rook: Rook endings have a large drawish tendency, but often great precision is required:} Kg5 $2 ({Only} 60... Ra4 $1 {draws:} 61. Rg8+ (61. Rf8 Kg3 62. Rg8+ (62. Rxf4 Rxd4+ 63. Kxd4 Kxf4 $11) 62... Kh4 $11) 61... Kh4 $1 (61... Kh5 $2 62. Rf8 $18) (61... Kh3 $2 62. Kf3 Kh4 (62... Rxd4 $6 63. Rh8#) 63. Rg4+ Kh5 64. Rxf4 Kg5 65. Ke3 $18) 62. Rf8 Kg3 $1 63. Rxf4 Rxd4+ 64. Kxd4 Kxf4 $11) (60... Rf5 $2 {runs into} 61. Rg8+ Rg5 62. Rf8 $18) ({and} 60... f3 $2 {is met by} 61. Rg8+ Rg5 62. Rf8 Rg7 63. Rf4+ $18) 61. Rf8 Ra7 (61... Ra1 62. Rf5+ $18) 62. Rf5+ $1 {Zwischenschach (German for in-between-check) is a typical technique.} (62. Rxf4 $2 Re7+ 63. Kf3 Kg6 64. d5 (64. Re4 Kf7 $11) 64... Rf7 65. Rxf7 Kxf7 66. Ke4 Ke7 67. Ke5 Kd7 68. d6 Kd8 $1 69. Ke6 Ke8 70. d7+ Kd8 71. Kd6 {patt}) 62... Kg6 63. Rxf4 Ra5 (63... Re7+ 64. Kd5 Re8 65. Kc6 Rc8+ 66. Kd7 Rc4 67. Ke6 Kg5 68. Rf5+ Kg6 69. d5 Re4+ 70. Re5 Rf4 71. d6 $18) (63... Rf7 64. Rxf7 Kxf7 65. Kd5 Ke7 66. Kc6 $18 { [%csl Gc6,Gd6,Ge6]}) 64. Rf1 (64. d5 $4 Ra4+ 65. Ke5 Rxf4 66. Kxf4 Kf6 $11) 64... Ra7 (64... Ra8 65. d5 Kg7 66. d6 Rf8 67. Rxf8 Kxf8 68. Ke5 Kf7 69. Kf5 Kf8 70. Kf6 Ke8 71. Ke6 Kd8 72. d7 Kc7 73. Ke7 $18) 65. Ke5 Ra2 (65... Re7+ 66. Kd6 $18) (65... Ra5+ 66. d5 $18) 66. d5 Re2+ 67. Kd6 Rd2 68. Ke6 Re2+ 69. Kd7 Rd2 70. d6 Kg7 71. Ke7 Re2+ 72. Kd8 Rd2 73. d7 Rc2 74. Rf4 {Navara builds a bridge and so Elarbi resigned, e.g.} (74. Rf4 Rc1 75. Ke7 Re1+ 76. Kd6 Rd1+ 77. Ke6 Re1+ (77... Kg6 78. Rf6+ Kg7 79. Rf5 $18 {[%cal Gf5d5]}) 78. Kd5 Rd1+ 79. Rd4 $18) 1-0

Mating Attack out of the Blue

Even in the endgame it can happen:

[Event "41st Olympiad Open 2014"] [Site "Tromso NOR"] [Date "2014.08.04"] [Round "3.2"] [White "Abdyjapar, Asyl"] [Black "Borisek, Jure"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "A88"] [WhiteElo "2368"] [BlackElo "2569"] [Annotator "Karsten Müller"] [PlyCount "126"] [EventDate "2014.08.02"] [WhiteTeam "Kyrgyzstan"] [BlackTeam "Slovenia"] [WhiteTeamCountry "KGZ"] [BlackTeamCountry "SLO"] 1. d4 f5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. g3 g6 4. Bg2 Bg7 5. O-O O-O 6. c4 d6 7. Nc3 c6 8. Re1 Na6 9. h3 Ne4 10. Qc2 Nxc3 11. bxc3 e5 12. Bg5 Qe8 13. e4 Qf7 14. Qd2 f4 15. gxf4 exf4 16. e5 h6 17. exd6 hxg5 18. c5 Bf6 19. Ne5 Qh7 20. Ng4 Bxg4 21. hxg4 Rae8 22. Rab1 Qd7 23. Bf3 Rxe1+ 24. Qxe1 Nb8 25. Qd1 Kg7 26. Qb3 b6 27. cxb6 axb6 28. Qxb6 Qxd6 29. a4 Kh6 30. Qa7 Nd7 31. Rb7 Rd8 32. a5 c5 33. dxc5 Qd3 34. Kg2 Be7 35. Rc7 Ne5 36. Qb7 Rb8 37. Qe4 Qxf3+ 38. Qxf3 Nxf3 39. Rxe7 Nh4+ 40. Kf1 Ra8 41. Ke2 Rxa5 42. Re5 Kg7 43. Rxg5 Ra2+ 44. Kd3 Kf6 45. Rd5 Nf3 46. c6 Ne5+ 47. Ke4 Nxc6 48. Kxf4 Ra4+ 49. Kg3 Rc4 50. Rd6+ Kf7 51. f4 Ne7 52. Rd3 Ng8 53. Rf3 Nf6 54. Kh4 Ne4 55. Rd3 Rc8 56. Rd7+ Ke6 57. Rh7 Kf6 58. g5+ Ke6 59. Rg7 Rxc3 60. Rxg6+ Kf5 {Mating Attack out of the Blue: Even in the endgame it can happen:} 61. Rg8 $2 {Now White's king can not longer escape.} ( 61. Ra6 $5 {was called for, e.g.} Rc2 (61... Kxf4 62. Kh5 $11) (61... Nf2 62. Rf6+ $11) 62. Ra5+ Kxf4 63. Kh5 $11) (61. Rb6 {is playable as well.}) ({ However, not} 61. Rh6 $2 Rc2 62. Kh3 Kxf4 63. Rh4+ Kf3 64. Rh8 Nxg5+ 65. Kh4 Rh2+ $19) 61... Nf2 $1 {[%cal Gc3h3]} 62. Rf8+ Kg6 63. f5+ (63. Rg8+ Kf7 $19 { [%cal Gf7g8,Gc3h3]}) 63... Kg7 {[%cal Gg7f8,Gc3h3]} 0-1

Triangulation

At first sight this position seems to be drawn. But this is deceptive. Where shall White's king be to stop the invasion of Black's ? If Black's king is on f4 then White's should be on f2. If Black's is on e4 then on f1. So far so good. But what happens, if Black's king is on e5 or f5 ? Then White's should be on e1 or g1. But e5 and f5 are connected and e1 and g1 not:

[Event "41st Olympiad Open 2014"] [Site "Tromso NOR"] [Date "2014.08.04"] [Round "3.2"] [White "Bengherabi, Khalil"] [Black "Laurusas, Tomas"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B11"] [WhiteElo "2170"] [BlackElo "2435"] [Annotator "Karsten Müller"] [PlyCount "166"] [EventDate "2014.08.02"] [WhiteTeam "Algeria"] [BlackTeam "Lithuania"] [WhiteTeamCountry "ALG"] [BlackTeamCountry "LTU"] 1. e4 c6 2. Nf3 d5 3. Nc3 Bg4 4. h3 Bxf3 5. Qxf3 e6 6. b3 Nf6 7. Bb2 Nbd7 8. exd5 cxd5 9. Bb5 Be7 10. O-O O-O 11. d4 Qa5 12. Bd3 Ba3 13. Bxa3 Qxa3 14. Qg3 Rac8 15. Ne2 Rfe8 16. c4 Qa5 17. Rfb1 dxc4 18. bxc4 b6 19. Nc3 a6 20. Ne4 Nxe4 21. Bxe4 Nf6 22. Bd3 Red8 23. Rd1 b5 24. cxb5 axb5 25. Rac1 Rxc1 26. Rxc1 Qxa2 27. Qd6 Qa5 28. Qc5 Qd2 29. Qc7 Rf8 30. Bxb5 Qxd4 31. Bc6 h6 32. Bf3 Qd7 33. Qc2 Rb8 34. Rd1 Qc8 35. Qd2 Qc5 36. Rc1 Qb6 37. Qf4 Rd8 38. Rc7 Qb1+ 39. Kh2 Qe1 40. Rc2 Qb1 41. Rc7 Qb8 42. g3 Rd2 43. Kg2 Qb2 44. Bc6 Qd4 45. Qf3 Qd3 46. Rc8+ Kh7 47. Qxd3+ Rxd3 48. Rc7 Rc3 49. Rc8 Kg6 50. Bb7 Rxc8 51. Bxc8 Kf5 52. Kf3 Ke5 53. Ke3 Nd5+ 54. Kd3 Kd6 55. Kd4 e5+ 56. Ke4 g6 57. g4 Nc3+ 58. Ke3 Nd5+ 59. Ke4 Ne7 60. Bb7 f5+ 61. gxf5 gxf5+ 62. Kf3 Nd5 63. Bc8 e4+ 64. Kg3 Ke5 65. Bb7 f4+ 66. Kg2 h5 67. Bc6 f3+ 68. Kg3 Ne7 69. Bb7 Nf5+ 70. Kh2 h4 71. Bc8 Kf4 72. Bxf5 Kxf5 73. Kg1 Kf4 74. Kf1 e3 75. fxe3+ Kxe3 76. Ke1 {[%csl Re1,Ye4, Re5,Yf1,Gf2,Gf4,Rf5,Rg1] Triangulation: At first sight this position seems to be drawn. But this is deceptive. Where shall White's king be to stop the invasion of Black's ? If Black's king is on f4 then White's should be on f2. If Black's is on e4 then on f1. So far so good. But what happens, if Black's king is on e5 or f5 ? Then White's should be on e1 or g1. But e5 and f5 are connected and e1 and g1 not:} Ke4 $5 (76... f2+ $2 77. Kf1 {spoils it as} Kf3 { is stalemate.}) ({After} 76... Kf4 77. Kf2 {Black also has to triangulate.}) 77. Kf1 Ke5 78. Ke1 Kf5 {Black has triangulated and so won the duel for the corresponding squares.} 79. Kf1 Ke4 80. Ke1 (80. Kf2 Kf4 81. Kf1 Kg3 82. Kg1 Kxh3 83. Kf2 Kg4 $19) 80... Ke3 81. Kf1 f2 82. Kg2 Ke2 83. Kh2 f1=R ({Of course not} 83... f1=Q $4 {stalemate}) (83... f1=N+ {and}) (83... f1=B {win as well.}) ({But quickest is} 83... Kf3 84. Kh1 f1=Q+ 85. Kh2 Qg2#) 0-1

White Holes

Rook endings have a large drawish tendency, but in a practical game they can not not be defended:

[Event "41st Olympiad Open 2014"] [Site "Tromso NOR"] [Date "2014.08.04"] [Round "3.2"] [White "Jones, Gawain C B"] [Black "Meier, Georg"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D03"] [WhiteElo "2665"] [BlackElo "2646"] [Annotator "Karsten Müller"] [PlyCount "136"] [EventDate "2014.08.02"] [WhiteTeam "England"] [BlackTeam "Germany"] [WhiteTeamCountry "ENG"] [BlackTeamCountry "GER"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. Bg5 d5 3. e3 e6 4. Nd2 c5 5. c3 Bd6 6. Ngf3 h6 7. Bh4 Nbd7 8. Bd3 O-O 9. O-O b6 10. e4 cxd4 11. Bxf6 Qxf6 12. cxd4 dxe4 13. Bxe4 Rb8 14. Nc4 Qe7 15. Nxd6 Qxd6 16. Rc1 Bb7 17. Bxb7 Rxb7 18. Qc2 Nf6 19. Qc6 Qe7 20. Qb5 Rc7 21. Qa6 Qd7 22. Rxc7 Qxc7 23. a3 Rc8 24. h3 Qb8 25. Qe2 Qf4 26. Re1 Nd5 27. Qb5 Qc7 28. Qa6 Qb8 29. Qe2 Rc7 30. Ne5 Qb7 31. Qe4 Qc8 32. Qf3 Qd8 33. g3 Nf6 34. Rd1 Qd5 35. Qxd5 Nxd5 36. Rd2 f6 37. Ng4 Kf7 38. Ne3 Nxe3 39. fxe3 Rc1+ 40. Kf2 h5 41. h4 Ke7 42. e4 Kd6 43. Kf3 g6 44. Kf4 Rf1+ 45. Ke3 {White Holes: Rook endings have a large drawish tendency, but in a practical game they can not not be defended:} f5 $1 {Now White can not preserve the integrity of his pawn structure and must allow holes on the light squares.} 46. e5+ $6 {An inaccuracy.} (46. exf5 {was the lesser evil, but Black remains for choice, e.g. } gxf5 (46... exf5 $6 47. Rc2 Re1+ 48. Re2 $11) 47. Rc2 Re1+ (47... Kd5 48. Rc7 Re1+ 49. Kf3 Kxd4 50. Rd7+ Ke5 51. Rxa7) 48. Re2 Rg1 49. Kf4 Rd1 50. Ke3 Kd5 { and Black has practical winning chances.}) 46... Kd5 47. Rc2 $2 {Now Black is too quick.} (47. Rd3 $1 {was more tenacious, but Black keeps winning chances with} Re1+ 48. Kf4 Re4+ 49. Kg5 Rg4+ 50. Kf6 f4 51. gxf4 Rxh4 52. Kxg6 Rxf4 53. Kxh5 Rxd4 54. Re3 Re4) 47... Re1+ 48. Kf4 Re4+ 49. Kg5 Rg4+ $6 {Meier's only inaccuracy in this part of the game.} ({The direct} 49... Kxd4 $1 {was better according to the computer, e.g.} 50. Kxg6 (50. Kf6 Rxe5 51. Rd2+ Ke3 $19) 50... Kxe5 51. Rc3 (51. Kxh5 $6 Rg4 $19) 51... Rg4+ 52. Kf7 f4 53. gxf4+ Kf5 54. Re3 Rxh4 55. Re5+ Kxf4 56. Kxe6 Rh2 $19) 50. Kf6 f4 51. gxf4 Rxf4+ 52. Kxg6 Rxh4 53. Rc7 Rxd4 54. Rxa7 $6 (54. Kxh5 {was called for as in the game Black's passed h-pawn will decide the day.}) 54... h4 55. Kf6 $6 (55. Kg5 Kxe5 56. Rh7 Rf4 $17) (55. Rh7 Kxe5 56. Rh5+ Kd6 $17) 55... Rf4+ 56. Kg5 Kxe5 57. Rh7 (57. Re7 h3 58. Rh7 Rf3 59. Kg4 Rb3 60. a4 (60. Rxh3 $6 Rxh3 61. Kxh3 Kd4 62. a4 Kc4 $19) 60... Kd4 $19) (57. Rb7 h3 58. Rxb6 $6 Rf5+ 59. Kg4 h2 $19) (57. Rc7 h3 58. Rc3 h2 59. Rh3 Rf2 $19) 57... Ke4 58. Rh6 (58. Rc7 e5 59. Rc3 Rf3 60. Rc4+ Kd3 61. Rxh4 e4 $19) (58. Rxh4 $6 Rxh4 59. Kxh4 Kf3 $19 {[%cal Ge6e1]}) 58... e5 59. Re6 Kf3 60. Rxe5 h3 61. Rb5 Kg3 $5 {[%cal Gf4f3,Gf4g4,Gg4h4] Meier uses his rook as shied in typical style.} 62. Rb3+ (62. Rxb6 h2 63. Rh6 Rg4+ 64. Kf5 Rh4 $19) 62... Rf3 63. Rxb6 h2 64. Rh6 Kg2 65. Kg4 (65. Rxh2+ Kxh2 66. a4 Rb3 $19) 65... Rb3 (65... Rg3+ 66. Kf4 Rh3 67. Rg6+ Kf2 68. Rc6 Rf3+ 69. Ke5 h1=Q $19) 66. Kf4 h1=Q 67. Rxh1 Kxh1 68. Ke5 Rxb2 {An instructive performance by Georg Meier!} 0-1

Karsten Müller in ChessBase Magazine

Do you like these lessons? There are plenty more by internationally renowned endgame expert Dr Karsten Müller in ChessBase Magazine, where you will also find openings articles and surveys, tactics, and of course annotations by the world's top grandmasters.

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Apart from his regular columns and video lectures in ChessBase Magazine there is a whole series of training DVDs by Karsten Müller, which are bestsellers in the ChessBase Shop.



Karsten Müller, born 1970, has a world-wide reputation as one of the greatest endgame experts. He has, together with Frank Lamprecht, written a book on the subject: “Fundamental Chess Endgames” in addition to other contributions such as his column on the website ChessCafe as well as in ChessBase Magazine. Müller's ChessBase-DVDs about endgames in Fritztrainer-Format are bestsellers. The PhD in mathematics lives in Hamburg, where he has also been hunting down points for the HSK in the Bundesliga for many years.
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QueenHJM QueenHJM 9/5/2014 08:22
You are awesome Dr. Muller! I really enjoy your videos and articles! :)
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