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 Tricks in the K+P ending.

This is a nice ending ... a good thing to know in any K+P endgame.  

pwn-eg2_pos1.jpg, 20 KB

  8/ppp5/8/PPP3k1/8/6K1/8/8 w - - 0 1  


It is White to move in this position. {See above.}  

Can the first player win ... ... ... or is this just a draw? 


This is a neat trick ... especially if you have never seen it before.   
 1.b6!,  (Maybe - '!!') 
The only correct way to proceed. 

Why? The answers are simple: 
# 1.) The Black King is far away from the Pawns. 
# 2.) White's Pawns are far advanced. 
# 3.) In such situations, a breakthrough is imminent. 

     [ Many students try to win by simply marching the King over ... here that does not work at all.   

       For example: </= 1.Kf3?! Kf52.Ke3? Ke53.Kd3?! Kd54.Kc3?? Kxc5 {Diag?}  
        ... and now Black is winning ("-/+") easily from this position.   

       (In this line, White could probably draw with 4.b6.) ]   


There are not a lot of choices for Black in this position.  

     [ </=  1...a6?;  2.bxc7 Kf5;  3.c8Q+ Kf6;  4.Qxb7,  "+/-"   


        Or  1...cxb6;  2.a6!! bxa6;  3.c6 Kf6;  4.c7 Ke7;  
        5.c8Q a5;  6.Qb7+ Kd6;  7.Qxa7 Kc5;  8.Kf4 Kb5;   
        9.Ke4 a4;  10.Kd4, "+/-"  with an easy win. ]   


 2.c6!! bxc6;   {Box?}   
This is pretty much forced. 

     [ </= 2...bxa5?;  3.cxb7 a4;   4.b8Q a3;  5.Qxc7 a2;  6.Qa5+ Kf6;  7.Qxa2,  "+/-" ]   


 3.a6 Kf64.a7,  "+/-"  {See the diagram below.}   
White wins easily.  

pwn-eg2_pos2.jpg, 19 KB

  8/P1p5/1pp2k2/8/8/6K1/8/8 b  


     [ Also good is:  4.Kf4!? winning.   

                 *** *** *** *** ***  

       If you need to see the proof, (that White is winning in this position); then here it is:    
       4.a7 Ke75.a8Q Kd76.Kf4! b57.Ke5 b48.Qb7 c59.Qb5+ Kc810.Qxc5 b3   
       11.Qc3,  "+/-"   White has a completely obvious and decisive advantage here. ]    


  Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby, 2006. All rights reserved.  


    1 -  0    

  Replay the solution  

1.b6 axb6; 2.c6 bxc6; 3.a6 Kf6; 4.a7,  1-0



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  Copyright A.J. Goldsby, 2006.  All rights reserved.  

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