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Thursday, June 3, 2010

Bishop Ending on Queen Alice

I just finished a game in a tournament at Queen Alice where I had two very difficult B endings against a player named ‘donidon’ from South Africa. In this game the opening was my favorite Torre Attack but after a few moves it strongly resembled a Colle and I never got much play. My QB has been buried for the last dozen moves. The position in the diagram is about equal but it’s clear I can’t hold the b-Pawn. Once it goes, Black is up a P but I figured there wasn’t anything he could do with it. He came close though and a little later I got a tad worried.

Position after Black’s 38th move

This is a good example of planning! The plan is simply to reposition the N to a better square on e3 where it will put pressure on f4. As I've posted before, plans are often nothing more than 2-3 move long maneuvers designed to place a piece on a more active square.
Black likewise repositions his N
40.Ne3+ Ke4 41.Nc2
I thought about playing 41.Bg1 and f3 to bring the B into play, but first decided to see where he’s going with the B.
41...Bc5 42.Ke2 Nd4+ 43.Nxd4 Kxd4
I was sure he was going to play to get a passed P with 43...exd4 44.f3+ Kd5
Time to get the B into the game.
44…Kc3 45.b4 Kxb4 46.Kd3 Bd4 47.Ke4 Kc4 48.Kf5
I’m going to win the P back and hereabouts I was even thinking maybe I could win!
48...Kd3 49.Kxf6 e4+
Big think here. I didn’t realize he was going to get a passed P. Of course I can always sac my B for it but I had to spend some time making sure he couldn’t block the queening square with his B.
50.Kxg5 e3 51.Bg3 e2 52.f4 Be3 53.Kg4 Ke4 54.f5 Bd4 55.Kg5 Bc3 56.f6
Here, for a minute, I thought I was winning, but his next move forcing me to give up my B holds the draw.
56...e1Q 57.Bxe1 Bxe1 58.Kg6
And I offered the draw because I finally realized his K was close enough to the action that combined with the B, I couldn’t force a P home. For example: 58.Kg6 Bb4 59.g4 Kf4 60.g5 Bf8 61.Kh5 Kf5

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