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View Full Version : Two legal moves - both win - which do you choose?



Dougy
16-10-2008, 10:18 AM
This is problem 30632 at ChessTempo.com.

3rr1k1/pp4pp/4R3/5p2/8/1BP5/PP3PPP/6K1 w - - 0 1

Black plays 1...Rd1+? leaving White with two legal moves 2.Re1+ and 2.Bxd1, both are winning positions. Which would you choose?

ER
16-10-2008, 11:32 AM
wow, I just saw the results and was celebrating cauz i was with the majority (100% mind you?) for first time in my entire life! Then I realised I was the only voter! :(

Adamski
16-10-2008, 12:11 PM
Re1+ because it wins a whole Rook.
Bxd1 is harder to win after ...Rxe6, Bb3 Kf7, Bxe6+ Kxe6. Black has active king so ending could be more complex to win.

Capablanca-Fan
16-10-2008, 12:18 PM
Re1+ because it wins a whole Rook.
Bxd1 is harded to win after ...Rxe6, Bb3 Kf7, Bxe6+ Kxe6. Black has active king so ending could be more complex to win.
Agreed.

Miranda
16-10-2008, 12:35 PM
*hits head on desk* I spent five minutes looking at this problem, going 'why can't black take the rook on e1 and it's mate!'

ahhh too little sleep!

But yeah, i'd play Re1. A whole rook advantage is way better!

Desmond
16-10-2008, 12:49 PM
Bxd1 is harder to win after ...Rxe6, Bb3 Kf7, Bxe6+ Kxe6. Black has active king so ending could be more complex to win.
No hurry to grab the rook, move your king up, let him waste a move and then take the rook next move. This is the simpler win IMO.

WhiteElephant
16-10-2008, 12:51 PM
Seems like Re1+ is pretty clear but I keep looking for some tricky trick to pop out LOL....I even looked at 1....Rd5 and 1.....Re6. Nope, they don't work :D

Ian Rout
16-10-2008, 01:28 PM
Maybe it says something about players' personalities. Bd1 looks more clear-cut in that you can precisely map out the winning process after the exchanges, but I suspect I would play Re1 as it's a safer win in the position a piece up but you could misjudge the pawn ending and end up a tempo short. Also the opponent might just resign after Re1 whereas after Bd1 they could be tempted to check out your technique.

Capablanca-Fan
16-10-2008, 04:36 PM
No hurry to grab the rook, move your king up, let him waste a move and then take the rook next move.
All true.

This is the simpler win IMO.
I have no doubt that someone of your strength would find it simple. But a player a few hundred points lower might go wrong in the P ending, while he would likely win after 2. Re1+ Kf8 3. Rxd1 with an extra B+P. E.g. if 3... Re2 then simply 4. Rb1 is possible followed by Kf1-e1 driving the R off the 2nd rank, or better 4. Kf1 Rxb5. Rd7 cleaning up lots of Black's Ps.

Miranda
16-10-2008, 09:18 PM
Yeah
i've stuffed up many a pawn ending :P

so i'd just take the rook and hope they resign soon!

Aaron Guthrie
16-10-2008, 09:49 PM
What about a third option; play neither move. This sometimes encourages people to resign.

Adamski
16-10-2008, 09:56 PM
No one's going to resign after they have just played check!

Dougy
17-10-2008, 01:33 PM
Thanks for your responses. I personally prefer the king-and-pawn endgame.

Lets consider 1... Rd1+ 2. Bxd1 Rxe6 3. Bb3 Kf7 4. f4 Ke7 5. Bxe6 Kxe6. By the way, 4. Bxe6+ also wins similarly, but it's best to avoid wasting time.

8/pp4pp/4k3/5p2/5P2/2P5/PP4PP/6K1 w - - 0 6
White to move.

I think this is a very instructive position. Anyone who thinks this is a difficult win for White - I recommend playing it against your computer for practice. Similar positions will come up in tournament play.

Kevin Bonham
20-10-2008, 04:23 PM
I wouldn't think much about which wins more easily since both win very easily.

I'd play Re1+ because it's more artistic.

charleschadwick
20-10-2008, 10:33 PM
I'd play Re1+, more fun.

eclectic
20-10-2008, 11:09 PM
i would procrastinate on deciding between the two options and lose on time

Aaron Guthrie
20-10-2008, 11:19 PM
i would procrastinate on deciding between the two options and lose on timeHmm, a similar option to mine, but with a worse result.

Rincewind
20-10-2008, 11:50 PM
I reckon Bxd1 is both more artistic and more fun, but maybe that is just me. I would calculate it exactly as far as the line given by Dougy after that the endgame plays itself and white can go to sleep. By leaving him with a rook I think you still have to stay awake.

Of course black doesn't need to take on e6 but I suspect most blacks who play Rd1+ would, hoping to draw the endgame.

Miranda
21-10-2008, 12:57 PM
I think it's just so much easier to get a free rook.

I don't think I could win the bishop endgame.

Capablanca-Fan
21-10-2008, 01:11 PM
I think it's just so much easier to get a free rook.

I don't think I could win the bishop endgame.
Presumably this is "pawn endgame", but this is a reasonable point.


I wouldn't think much about which wins more easily since both win very easily.
Easy for you or any other c. 2000 player, I agree. But suppose you were facing a 1700, 1500, 1300 and 1100 player at the Hobart club as Black: what are your chances of pulling off a swindle in the K&P endgame on the one hand, and the B+Pup R endgame on the other?

Desmond
21-10-2008, 01:36 PM
Easy for you ...The question is which move would you play.

Capablanca-Fan
21-10-2008, 02:00 PM
The question is which move would you play.
I would probably win the R, and if ... Re2 then Kf1 Rxb2, Rd7 cleaning up many of Black's Ps. The K&P endgame is also easy; I probably would have picked this course if it had been a single outside passed P on the Q-side rather than 3v2.

Capablanca-Fan
21-10-2008, 02:01 PM
i would procrastinate on deciding between the two options and lose on time
Buridan's Mule rides again!

Miranda
21-10-2008, 02:01 PM
I guess what you choose to play depends on your level... and if you can actually see the winning moves!

Aaron Guthrie
21-10-2008, 02:11 PM
Easy for you or any other c. 2000 player, I agree. But suppose you were facing a 1700, 1500, 1300 and 1100 player at the Hobart club as Black: what are your chances of pulling off a swindle in the K&P endgame on the one hand, and the B+Pup R endgame on the other?This is a good way to think about it. And I'd say the swindle chances are better in the king and pawn.

Kevin Bonham
21-10-2008, 10:27 PM
Easy for you or any other c. 2000 player, I agree. But suppose you were facing a 1700, 1500, 1300 and 1100 player at the Hobart club as Black: what are your chances of pulling off a swindle in the K&P endgame on the one hand, and the B+P–up R endgame on the other?

Against our 1700s players at least, my chances are virtually zero in either case and I would resign.

Against the 1100 I would probably prefer the K+P ending as black, especially if the 1100 was a junior. An inexperienced white might easily muck around with pawns and let me get good king position and at least draw.

Perhaps in the mid-range I would be tempted to assume the opponent could convert the won K+P ending reliably and hence go for the B+P-down R ending to try to get back a pawn or two or get them with a rambling rook swindle.

Space_Dude
28-11-2008, 08:30 PM
*hits head on desk* I spent five minutes looking at this problem, going 'why can't black take the rook on e1 and it's mate!'

ahhh too little sleep!

But yeah, i'd play Re1. A whole rook advantage is way better!
Same here so, I guessed, and got it right!:lol:

pappubahry
28-11-2008, 10:00 PM
8/pp4pp/4k3/5p2/5P2/2P5/PP4PP/6K1 w - - 0 6
White to move.

I think this is a very instructive position. Anyone who thinks this is a difficult win for White - I recommend playing it against your computer for practice.

I did it! :owned: Maybe studying these king and pawn endgames is actually helping my chess. :eek:

Dougy
06-12-2008, 11:36 AM
I did it! :owned: Maybe studying these king and pawn endgames is actually helping my chess. :eek:

Hopefully so. (: I think people underestimate how easy it is to win in these positions.