The Rook pawn

Published on Saturday, January 31, 2015 in | reactions (0)

Endgame with Rook pawn

We have seen that we had to be carefull in the endgame with the Knight game, but the endgame in itself was almost the same. For the Rook pawn, which means a Pawn on the a-file or the h-file, however the endgame is very different. The side of the board provides a natural barrier which nearly always results in exceptional endgame positions. Note that this endgame was in fact about which King was able to reach the important squares b7 of b8. This kind of squares are called key squares. More about them in one of the next lessons.

I assume that you already have seen the lesson about the Knight pawn. The next chess lesson will probably make it easier to understand this kind of endgames by teaching something about Key squares.

The Knight pawn

Published on Friday, January 30, 2015 in | reactions (0)

Endgame with Knight pawn

In the King on the sixt rank we have seen that this kind of endgame with a central or Bishop pawn ahead was won. now we will look at the Knight pawn and later on we will look at the Rook pawn. Remember that the white King has to move to the edge of the board to help the Knight pawn.

This series of chess lessons continues with the Rook pawn.

The Italian game

Published on Thursday, January 29, 2015 in | reactions (0)

This article will first summarize the most important ideas of the Italian Game after which the diagram will be used to replay the main variations of this opening.

The Italian game is a very popular opening, especially with kids. The opening is played very strict by the Rules for the opening. In this opening both players are trying to gain control over the centre. White tries to accomplish this goal by means of moves like 4.c3 and 5.d4. Black will also try to get his share of the centre or to break up White’s pawns by means of a move like …d5.

For both White and Black it is important to develop the pieces as soon as possible. In addition White will try to aim his Bishop at the weak f7, but in most games White will not be able to start the attack soon enough to catch the Black King in the middle. Both players are going to castle to safety before the attack starts.

Try to place a Rook on the central lines, especially when these lines are open. Eventually this may turn out to be the decisive advantage in the endgame.

Because of the symmetry almost all ideas are also applicable for Black. If you want to learn more about this opening I can recommend the articles of The Exeter Chess Club. The modern Italian game may be a good place to start.

The lessons on this site continue with some lessons on pawn endgames: the Knight pawn, the Rook pawn and Key squares. After these lessons we will revisit the Italian Game with a Trap in the Italian Game: the Blackburne Shilling Gambit.

The King on the sixt rank

Published on Wednesday, January 28, 2015 in | reactions (0)

In the Pawn’s square rule lesson you have learned that one pawn more may be enough to win the game. But if the pawn in itself can’t make it to the other side the king has to assist.
In this lesson you will see that if the assisting King is able to reach the sixth rank in front of it’s pawn the game will be won.

Let’s have a look at the next diagram. The next lesson will be about the Italian Game.

Mate in two

Published on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 in | reactions (0)

You will find a new mate in two problem each time you visit this page (or after a refresh of this page). After giving the right solution or after three wrong answers the solution is revealed.
You can make a move by clicking on a piece followed by clicking on the target square.

There are also mate in one and mate in three problems on this site.

During one of the previous lessons we have seen that attacking a pinned piece is one of the possibilities to exploit the advantage of having pinned a piece. In this tactic, other pieces were able to attack the opposing pinned piece. Pinning can also be used in combination with other tactics. A piece can be pinned to prevent it from moving to attack or to defend. This lesson is about this last mentioned aspect. We will take advantage of the fact that the pinned piece is unable (or hardly able) to move.

    In the diagram on the left the Knight on e7 is pinned and will be unable to defend the Knight on e5.

White is able to win a piece by 1.Bxe5.

This diagram is an example of an absolute pin, which makes it rather easy to see that the pinned piece is unable to defend the attacked piece.
    In the next diagram the pin isn’t absolute, but it doesn’t matter in this case and White is able to play 1.Bxc4.
If Black captures the Bishop by 1…Bxc4, which is his best move, he will loose the Rook by 2.Rxf8+.

Please note that the pawn on g2 is essential in this example.
Without the pawn 1.Bc4 will meet 1…Rg8+, probably followed by something like 2.Kf2 Bxc4
    Try to find the pin in the third diagram.

As soon as you have found the pin, you will also see that White can take the Rook on f6 for free.

After 1.Rxf6 Black isn’t allowed to play 1…Qxf6 because it will be followed by 2.Qxc7#.

These target examples are the same as mentioned before in the list of targets in the queen fork lesson.
    One final example.

The pawn on h7 has been absolutely pinned by White’s Rook.
But this means that this pawn isn’t attacking or defending the square g6.

This results in a mate in one: 1.Ng6#.
The next lesson will be about the endgame: The King on the sixth rank.

The Scotch game

Published on Sunday, January 25, 2015 in | reactions (0)

The Scotch opening is a chess opening that fits in very well with the Rules for the opening from the previous series of chess lessons.

In short:

  • Get a pawn in the centre
  • Develop your minor pieces
  • Move your King to safety
In the Scotch game it is not only White’s intention to accomplish these goals, but also to prevent Black doing the same. The purpose of the game is to reach an advantageous imbalance.

As you can see, the Scotch game is a very nice chess opening. It is an open game and there are a lot of possibilities for tactical manoeuvres.

In the next chess lesson we will learn why a pinned piece can not be counted as a defender, but if you first want to study another opening the Italian Game may be a nice lesson.

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