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Initiative in Endgames, Part 4

  • WIM energia
  • | 05.10.2012
  • | 8498 Aufrufe
  • | 21 Kommentare

Today's endgame is from Sao Paulo and features a fight between Caruana and Carlsen. Carlsen playing black captured the initiative in the late middlegame and tried many resources to capitalize on it. In the end with two consecutive mistakes he let not only the win slip but also the draw. The game is divided into 6 parts to highlight the critical moments and shifts or adjustments from one plan to the next. Today we will see the first three parts and next week we'll see the last three parts of this endgame. In the first 3 parts Caruana was more or less on the defensive - waiting patiently for his chance and not letting Carlsen to get too far with his initiative. Carlsen implemented a series of small plans to get a position he was aiming for. I don't claim here that he had the final position from the last diagram in his mind but I would not be surprised if he had the pawn structure and the material figured out long before. This article is part of the series on initiative in endgames.

Part 1: White's pieces are discoordinated and Calsen uses this to win a pawn.

We have a rather typical pawn structure resulting from the French defense: white has a bad pawn structure on the queenside and black has a weakness on e6. Carlsen's position is better due to his more active pieces and more space. Particularly, the rook on a2 is cut off from play, and the Nd2/Bc1 still have to find work to do. Black is targeting the weaknesses on f2 and h5 and Caruana has no way of defending them both. Clearly, Carlsen has the initiative in this position and lets see how he translates it into an extra pawn.

Part 2: Taking a risk Carlsen grabs space on the kingside, stabilizing the pawn structure which benefits him.

Many chess players after winning material do not really know what to do with it, but Carlsen knows exactly what he is doing next.To keep initiative one has to be aggressive and accumulate positional or material advantages. Here, Carlsen pushes the kingside pawns forward thus securing space advantage on the kingside which will prove useful in future. In doing so, he takes a risk due to tactical complications and almost loses a part of his advantage. Also the pawn structure becomes fixed making it easier for both sides to come up with plans. This pawn structure change benefits Carlsen because he has the initiative and he is the one that comes up with the plans, while on the other hand Caruana has to be patient and on the defensive.

Part 3: Carlsen finds a way to trade a pair of rooks by placing a king on a5.

What are the plans available to black? The h4-break is out of the question because the Bg5 is guarding it. It leaves black with play on the queenside: a5-b5-b4. It will be accompanied with massive rook exchanges on the b-file and the resulting opposite-colored bishop endgame is drawn. There is another plan for black, which Carlsen successfully realized: activating the king. This can be only done if one pair of rooks is gone because otherwise there is a possibility of checkmate threats. By putting the rook on b6 black can threaten to get the b-file, so white cannot allow it and should play Rb1 himself. Then Rb6 will not be too favorable for black because after Rxb6 he would have to recapture with the a-pawn. By bringing the king to a5 Carlsen not only threatens to get to the a3-pawn but also secures the b6-square for the rook exchange.

Carlsen has a position that he probably was aiming for but it might be not enough for a win. He still has the initiative and it is due to the extra pawn and a clear plan in bringing the king to the centre. On the other hand, white having a passive bishop on h4 has to still wait and try to counter black's plan on getting the king to the centre. How the two sides managed to implement their plans we will see in the next article.

Kommentare


  • vor 22 Monate

    otherdog_100

    Thanks for the time and effort in carefully explaining the pros and cons - appreciated

  • vor 22 Monate

    DESTROYER8

    i still can't believe that Carlsen lost to Caruana

  • vor 22 Monate

    popoik

    hihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihihi

  • vor 22 Monate

    Zeitgeist_Kaal

    Can't wait for the next part!

  • vor 22 Monate

    tridev1234

    Useful description of chess ideas.Thank you.

  • vor 22 Monate

    tridev1234

    Nice description of chess ideas.Thank you.

  • vor 22 Monate

    thespideysanjeet

    well thanks for giving endgame knowledge

  • vor 22 Monate

    P_G_M

    @WIM energia

    This endgame is very complex and Houdini have it completely wrong evaluated after Carlsen's positional blunder 78...,Be4 which Caruana took inmediately advantage with 79.RxB, Houdini gives an evaluation of -1.57 after 79...,dxR which is completely wrong, because black is lost in all variations because white has two passed pawns queening on dark squares and white's passed d pawn is queening in a dark square protected by white's dark square bishop. Also white's king is much better placed to both defend and attack. 

    I truly believe the position after 79...,dxR is lost for black. I will really like to see your analysis on how black could win the game after 79...,dxR, or at least draw the game.

    I'm looking forward to see your analysis of the second part of this endgame.

    I'm sure that  Carlsen now understand that he made a positional blunder when he played 78...,Be4.

  • vor 22 Monate

    JustinLuti

    @Jesorak

    Frankly I still prefer Caruana's 35th. Blockade and defend seems more practical.

  • vor 22 Monate

    kenyal

    what website i can find the livestream of this tourney

  • vor 22 Monate

    Jesorak

    @JustinLuti:  Bxg5 is indeed quite dreary for white, but it is less dreary than anything else.  There are no moves in that position that would give white the advantage, or even equality, but Bxg5 comes closer to achieving equality than any other move.  Black is still clearly better, but not by so great a degree.

  • vor 22 Monate

    Robbie960

    I really like the Bxg5 line; Carlsen already has the initiative and that line opens the E & F files for him to work, whereas the main line leaves him bottled up.

  • vor 22 Monate

    Boka7

    caurana is the best world player in this momoent.

  • vor 22 Monate

    1_Nf3

    Congrats to Caruana,stronger player italian ever

  • vor 22 Monate

    JustinLuti

    @ronupnorth @Jesorak

    The final position of that branch variation looks rather dreary for White...

  • vor 22 Monate

    HyperDragon

    Very nice! Keep em coming please :D

  • vor 22 Monate

    Jesorak

    @JustinLuti:  Bxg5 is better than the alternatives, because in that line white can regain material equality (white is down a pawn in the main line), but white is still worse because the rook is trapped.  So, yes, Bxg5 is a good move.

  • vor 22 Monate

    ObiRonKenobi

    35. Bxg5 looks like a good move, thus the !  traps the rook on b2 and has a very mobile rook

  • vor 22 Monate

    JustinLuti

    I don't quite understand the variation for white starting 35. Bxg5!

    The whole variation leads to something that sounds bad for white: "The rook on b2 is trapped, althought the material is equal." Is Bxg5 a good move or not?

  • vor 22 Monate

    Ricardoruben

    Very nicely analized, it's very nice to see the way ideas lie under the movements. Thank you for posting! :)

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