Friday, September 26, 2008

Simple combination missed

White (me) to move. Can you find the simple combination? I didn't, but I still managed to win the game. Highlight below to see answer.

[1. Rxe6+ fxe 2. Rxf8+ Kxf8 3. Nxe6+, leaving white up a pawn in what should be a "technique" win.]

P.S. After almost a year off slow games at ICC, I've started them up again, and I just went above 1500, a rating high!


Blogger Vincent said...

At first sight, you could trade everything off and win a pawn with a probably won endgame. Am I missing something obvious?

Rxe6 fxe6 Rxf8 Kxf8 Nxe6+ eats the trades the knight for rook

9/26/2008 11:58:00 PM  
Blogger Vincent said...

Ah! didn't realize you had posted the answer too.

While this is a fun little combination, I'm not sure I could even have won such a "technique" win. Maybe I have to go back to Silman's endgames.

9/26/2008 11:59:00 PM  
Blogger Cratercat said...

nice to see you back in action and keeping it real with the recent string of quality posts BDK. I've been reading blogs occasionally here and there on the side without comment, and although I'm still playing a fair amount of chess these days, I haven't had time nor inspiration to get back into blogging.

Out of curiosity, what are you using these days for tactics practice? As of late, Palliser's recent monster book of tactics (mostly puzzles all from recent GM games) and the tactics server on have been the most convenient and suitable for my level. I'm wondering if you've got the scoop on what's the latest and greatest out there for tactics practice (substance for a new post? (chuckles))

9/27/2008 03:40:00 AM  
Blogger Phaedrus said...

Missed combinations, whether in exercises or games (slow or blitz) ALWAYS tell you something about your skills. So when you have missed a combination try to find out what the reason was.

Did you know the pattern (and if you do what was that pattern)? Or did you see the pattern, but did you make an error in calculation?

These are very important skills to make a study plan. And do not hide behind excuses like: "I was tired". They may very well be valid, but when you are tired, the your weaknesses will just be more prominent. So when you miss a combination that you might have seen if you were not tired, it does tell you that this theme is less familiar to you than others.

9/27/2008 03:42:00 AM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Vincent: ya' got it.

cratercat: not much formally. I'm just playing and after the game I go over it once on my own and once with Fritz. Though I did start using Chessimo.

Phaedrus: you are right this is a good opportunity for blunderstanding.
And I have no excuses on this one. I wasn't tired, and I had time to think.

The moves that happened:
1. Nxe6 fxe 2. Rxe6+ Kd7 3. Re2 Rxf1 4. Kxf1). So, I still went up a pawn, but the post's line was better as it is better to just simplify down to the pawn endgame and get rid of all the rook complications.

I wish my main problem was evaluating the outcome of the actual versus ideal, but if at all that was unconscious.

The biggest problem is that the first exchange in the better line involved temporarily going down a rook for a pawn so I cut it off from my internal quiescience search filter prematurely. This is actually something I do somewhat regularly, as I mention here under number seventeen in my list of things to remember before I play.

This was a very sharp position, and I failed to think the exchanges through to quiescience, in addition to some fuzzy evaluation likely. This is bad, as I had about 20 minutes left on my clock, so it was a great time to settle in and think through all the variations.

9/27/2008 09:11:00 AM  
Blogger Polly said...

I was first looking at Rxe6, fXe6 Ne6, but that doesn't work because Rxf1+ and then simply move the other rook. After rejecting that line I saw Nxf7. Rook endings are a bear, so finding a combination that trades down more is useful.

9/27/2008 02:31:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Wow. Your blog is awesome. I went back and read some of your previous posts. All were informative and interesting. I've been studying chess books to get better, but after reading some of your entries, I think I might be wasting my time with study. Intuitively I think I knew chess was a game of skill not knowledge.

9/27/2008 06:10:00 PM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Polly: yeah, I think I didn't appreciate just how much the complexity drops, and if I am ahead a pawn (esp with pawns on both wings) it is a nice simplification.

Dark Glooming: thanks for the nice comment (umm, unless you were being sarcastic in which case....thanks).

9/27/2008 08:07:00 PM  
Blogger transformation said...

congratulations. you deserve it!

9/28/2008 06:52:00 AM  
Blogger BlunderProne said...

The roots of tactical destruction:


1.Rxe6+ is forcing

1...fxe6 then 2. Rxf8+ forcing Ke7 then 3. Rxd8 forcing the recapture 3...Kxd8 and the icing on the cake 4. Nxe6+ with a pawn and a knight edge.

9/28/2008 02:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the combination but i am not sure if the pawn endgame is so easy to win as you say.

9/28/2008 04:20:00 PM  
Blogger Glenn Wilson said...

It's great to see you posting regularly again.

After the combination it should be an easy win because:

white will be able to create a passed pawn on the k-side. Black will have to stop it and white will then go to the queenside and eat pawns while the black king will be slower to get back.

If that is not obvious I suggest that playing this out against your computer (or a player that knows how to win it). Play one side and then the other.

Play could go something like:
1. Rxe6+ fxe6 2. Rxf8+ Kxf8 3. Nxe6+ Ke7 4. Nxd8 Kxd8 5. h4 Ke7 6. g4 Kf6 7. Kf2 g6 8. Ke3 Ke5 9. h5 Kf6 10. Kf4 gxh5 11. gxh5 a5 12. Ke4 c6 13. a4 Ke6 14. h6 Kf6 15. c4 Kg6 16. Ke5 Kxh6 17. Kd6 c5 18. Kc6 Kg7 19. Kxb6 Kf6 20. Kxc5 Ke5 21. Kb5 Kf5

It is a "lot" of moves but simple ideas.

9/28/2008 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger Temposchlucker said...

Congrats with your rating!
But I suppose your RD hasn't diminished yet so your rating will swing back and forth?

9/28/2008 05:57:00 PM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Tempo: I'm not sure, but I think it's not weird fluctuations (it happened when I beat a 1521 player, and it took me from 1487 to 1505). I'm sure I'll go above and below 1500, but still a milestone. It became my goal after finishing the Circles, but then I got sick of chess and started playing only blitz. :)

9/28/2008 08:41:00 PM  
Blogger likesforests said...

1.Rxe6 fxe6 2.Rxf8 Kxf8 3.Nxe6 leads to a simple endgame. It would be much harder to convert with rooks on.

It's much easier to see these things when you *look* for a tactic. During a tense game I sometimes forget to look with the obvious side effect that I do not find them. ;)

9/29/2008 01:23:00 PM  
Blogger Polly said...

BDK: Thanks for referencing back to those excellent posts you made last October. There's a lot of really good stuff that I forgot about. I read the posts last year, but my brain can't remember all the good stuff I read in the chess blogosphere.

Some of what you mentioned probably explains why I let my 4th round game slip away into a draw when I was totally winning.

9/29/2008 02:13:00 PM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Polly: thanks, glad you followed the links! :)

Likeforests: I think part of my problem was that I didn't realize how much better the game is for me when I get ride of all the pieces. With what I played, I still ended up a pawn up, but with a rook for each side as well. It's a lot harder (everything else being equal) to convert a pawn up to a win when there are still rooks around. That will be another take-home lesson for me from this game.

9/29/2008 03:15:00 PM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Here is lesson number 17 from my Things to remember before I play post:

17. Think sharp lines through to quiescience.
You often stop thinking through sequences of forcing moves because of a temporary loss of material, but if you just would have thought through the recaptures you would have gained material. Don't be lazy: just as you force yourself to think through forcing sequences that initially look good, do the same for those that initially look bad. It is OK if he captures your queen if for compensation you get a rook and a queen!

9/29/2008 03:16:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Just saw this post. . .

1.Rxe6 fxe6 2.Rxf8+ Kxf8 3.Nxe6+ 4.Ke8 Nxd8 5.Kxd8

Leading to simple King-pawn ending. . .piece of cake.

10/22/2008 06:10:00 PM  

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