London Chess Grand Prix: Assess this Endgame!

Here is a position from the London Chess Grand Prix Round 7 (Report on Chess Blog.) The game was between Michael Adams and Boris Gelfand. Black dilutes down to a won endgame, but how to win it? Look at the pawn situation and come up with a strategic idea for Black to win. Remember, you need to think of strategy first before the move pattern here.

The strategic idea that Black can dilute the White pawn on Queenside is correct. Check out in the Chess King applet how the game went!

Adams Michael – Gelfand Boris

Result: 0-1
Site: FIDE Grand Prix
Date: 2012.09.28

[…] 1.e4 c5 2.¤f3 ¤c6 3.¥b5 e6 4.O-O ¤ge7 5.b3 a6 6.¥xc6 ¤xc6 7.¥b2 b6 8.d4 cxd4 9.¤xd4 ¥b7 10.¤d2 f6 11.£g4 ¢f7 12.¦ad1 £c7 13.¤xc6 ¥xc6 14.£h5+ ¢g8 15.¥d4 b5 16.f4 ¥e7 17.c3 ¦f8 18.b4 d6 19.¥f2 e5 20.¦c1 £b7 21.¦fe1 ¥e8 22.£f3 ¥f7 23.c4 h5 24.c5 dxc5 25.¥xc5 exf4 26.£xf4 ¥xa2 27.e5 ¥xc5+ 28.¦xc5 fxe5 29.£xe5 ¦h6 30.¤f3 ¦e6 31.£a1 ¦xe1+ 32.£xe1 £b6 33.£e3 ¥d5 34.¤g5 £f6 35.¤f3 ¥xf3 36.gxf3 £xf3 37.£xf3 ¦xf3 38.¢g2 ¦f4 39.¦c6 ¦xb4 40.¦xa6 ¦c4 41.¦b6 b4 42.¦b7 ¢h7 43.¦b6 g6 44.¢g3 h4+ 45.¢f3 ¢h6 46.¦b5 g5 47.h3 ¦c3+

White resigns because the Rook is tied down to looking after the b-pawn and the King is tied down to looking after the connected g- and h-Black pawns. On the other hand, Black has free time to manoeuvre the King to a useful square and force matters. Don’t forget to study your endgames. If you can visualize a won endgame, you would automatically know how to conduct the middlegame.

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