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Ildar Ibragimov vs Joshua E Friedel
US Championship 2006 (2006), San Diego, CA USA, rd 8, Mar-10
Scotch Game: Classical. Intermezzo Variation (C45)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-14-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: A most exciting ending with 4 passed pawns. It seems that Black blundered with 49... Kc7?. After the strong 50. Bd6!, White wins.

If 50... Rd6 51. Rd6 Kd6 52. a7 .

If 50... Kd7 51. a7! Ra5 52. Bb4! Ra7 53. Rf7 .

If 50... Kc6 51. Bf4 Kd7 52. a7 Ra5 53. Rf8! .

Instead of 49... Kc7?, it seems that Black should have played 49... d3!.

If 50. a7 d2 51. Bd2 Nd2 52. Kc2 Ra5 53. Rf8! (53. Kd2 Kc7 54. Rg6 Ra7 55. Rg4, drawish despite the advantage of a pawn) g3! 54. a8Q Ra8 55. Ra8 Nf3 56. Rg8 g2! 57. Rg2 Ne1 and 58... Ng2, draw.

This is a puzzlelike ending.

Mar-14-06  Cyphelium: <Mateo> After 49.- d3 50. a7 d2 51. ♗xd2 ♘xd2+, white doesn't have to play 52. ♔c2?. Instead he should play 52. ♔b2, when there's no knight fork on e1 anymore. Then white wins with 53. Rf8, as you indicated.
Mar-14-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <Cyphelium> If 49... d3 50. a7 d2 51. Bd2 Nd2 52. Kb2 Ra5 53. Rf8 Ra7 54. Rf7 Ke6 55. Ra7 g3. At first sight, White wins. But in fact, it seems that Black can hold the draw.

The White Rook has to stop the passed pawn. So Black comes with his King to push the g pawn, and the Black Knight stops the b pawn.

For instance, just to give an idea, 56. Kc3 Ne4 57. Kd3 Nc5 58. Kc4 Ne4 59. b4 Kf5 60. Kd4 g2 61. Ra1 (only move) Ng5 62. Kd5 Kf4 63. b5 Nf7 64. b6 Nd8 65. Kd6 Nb7 66. Kc6 Na5! 67. Kb5 Nb7, draw.

Mar-15-06  Cyphelium: <Mateo> A valid point, since after 49.- d3 50. a7 d2 51. ♗xd2 ♘xd2+ 52. ♔b2 ♖a5 53. ♖f8 ♖xa7 54. ♖f87+ ♔e6 55. ♖xa7 g3 56. ♔c3 ♘e4+ 57. ♔d3 ♘c5+, the rook vs knight endgame after 58. ♔e3 ♘xb3 59. ♔f3 etc. is drawish, since black's king is too close to the knight for white to make any progress. (I had lazely assumed that this endgame would win for white.)
Mar-15-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <Cyphelium> Thank you for your objection which gave us the opportunity to go deeper inside the position and to see all its beauties. I think this should be a puzzle (find move 49 for Black). Don't you think so?

By the way, I do not forget the Ponomariov game, but I have to work hard...

Mar-15-06  Cyphelium: <Mateo> Indeed it would make a very good puzzle, Dvoretsky-style: 'What should black play and what is the correct evaluation of the position?'

<By the way, I do not forget the Ponomariov game, but I have to work hard...>

Looking forward to that...=)

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