Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Summer Cup - Some Round Two Action

Here are a couple of games from round two of the Summer Cup. The first one was quite an interesting game between me and Michael Sole. I sort of missed a win on move 29, when I should have played Rd1, as I originally intended, instead of Rf1. And then 30. Re6 throws away the win completely (should have created an airhole for the king with h3). After that I'm scrabbling for a perpetual check. Michael's 31. ... Qf2 is quite flashy, but with 31. ... Qxf4 (also quite flashy) he might have been able to go for a win!

The second game is Ryan Winter, white, versus the (joint) New Zealand champion Russell Dive, which Ryan lost on time on move 84. The final position should probably be a draw, although you sort of feel Russell would have managed to eke out the win.
After Russell's 23rd move the computer has Ryan up by well over 2 points, but somehow it gradually went downhill for him from there.
Ryan's 49. Rb6 was actually a blunder, but Russell missed the tactical win: 49. ... Ra2+ 50. Ke1 (or anywhere) Rxf2 51. Kxf2 Bxd4+ followed by taking the rook.


  1. The final position in Winter-Dive appears to be a win for Russell to me?
    If white's rook leaves the 4th rank then Ra4 wins the f4 pawn. In the mean time Black now plays Rh3, Rh4 and e5. This again wins the pawn on f4.
    The only defense to this is Rd4 and Ke3 when Black's e5 doesn't win immediately, but on reaching here White can play Rg4 putting White in zugzwang.

    85.Rc4 Rh3 86.Rd4 Rh4 87.Ke3 (87.Kg3 Rg4+ 88.Kf3 e5 -+) 87...Rg4 88.Re4 (or ...e5 and ...Rxf4+ -+) 88...Rg3+ 89.Kxg3 Kxe4 90.Kg4 f5+ -+

    I don't see any other defensive idea for White.

    1. Maybe 85.Rc4 Rh3 86.Rc6! Rh4 87.Ke3! (the idea is 87...Rxf4 88.Rxe6 =+) is a defence still?

  2. Thanks Nic, it's always good to have a bit of expert analysis. I didn't look as closely as you at all the possibilities, basically I find these rook and pawn endings rather taxing. If it was me playing white I'm pretty sure Russell would have no problems converting the win.