Endgames from Kazakhstan (3)

by Karsten Müller
5/6/2023 – The Satty Zhuldyz rapid and blitz tournament took place in Astana as a side event of the World Championship match. A number of international chess stars participated. Karsten Müller followed the games, looking for endgame highlights. Find here four instructive positions, with on-point analysis by our in-house endgame expert. | Pictured: Alexander Grischuk | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

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The d-pawn decides

Haik Martirosyan won the blitz section of the tournament and got third place overall. The Armenian grandmaster twice beat Vladimir Kramnik in Astana. Here, playing black in their blitz encounter, he found a couple of precise manoeuvres to convert his advantage in an endgame with rooks, bishops and passed pawns for both sides.

Aronian foresees beautiful breakthrough

Levon Aronian won the tournament after getting the best combined score in rapid and blitz. Facing the winner of the rapid, Arjun Erigaisi, he correctly calculated the way to save a draw with white. Had he not foreseen the relevant line, Arjun would have counted with a beautiful breakthrough on the queenside.

Grischuk fails to build a fortress

In round 20 of the blitz, Olympic gold medallist Jakhongir Vakhidov defeated Russian star Alexander Grischuk with the white pieces. Grischuk failed to build a fortress in a position in which he had a pawn for a knight.

The long king march

A crucial matchup for the standings saw Arjun Erigaisi failing to find a long line which led to a winning king and pawn endgame against Haik Martirosyan.

Endgames of the World Champions from Fischer to Carlsen

Let endgame expert Dr Karsten Müller show and explain the finesses of the world champions. Although they had different styles each and every one of them played the endgame exceptionally well, so take the opportunity to enjoy and learn from some of the best endgames in the history of chess.


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.


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