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  1. #1
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    Philidor Position - 'Short Side' Defence

    Hopefully everyone knows the Philidor position in R+P vs R, but what about if the king is forced to move from in front of the pawn? Which way should it go?

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    Always go to the 'short side' with the king, so that the rook can check from the 'long side'. So Kb1 draws, while the move actually played, Kd1, loses.

    Kd1 was played in a game from the 2022 Qld Championship, so it's obviously not as well known as I thought.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    Hopefully everyone knows the Philidor position in R+P vs R, but what about if the king is forced to move from in front of the pawn? Which way should it go?

    FEN Viewer


    Always go to the 'short side' with the king, so that the rook can check from the 'long side'. So Kb1 draws, while the move actually played, Kd1, loses.

    Kd1 was played in a game from the 2022 Qld Championship, so it's obviously not as well known as I thought.
    It may appear obvious but in the heat of the moment - easy to send King in the wrong direction - even for those who are well-familiar iwth Philidor's rook endgame ''rules''.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron View Post
    It may appear obvious but in the heat of the moment - easy to send King in the wrong direction - even for those who are well-familiar iwth Philidor's rook endgame ''rules''.
    It's definitely not "obvious" - otherwise I wouldn't have posted on it And at the end of a long and tiring game, it is an easy mistake to make - Dvoretsky has a game where Tal makes this mistake (in a more complicated position, of course) against Larsen. That's why it's worth knowing.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brodie View Post
    Lasker's Defence is in fact the correct term. Philidor's defence is also acceptable.

    My understanding in defining the difference is this:
    Philidor's defence is when the enemy king needs to be cut of from the side preventing entry into the 6th rank (at least until the pawn gets to the 6th rank).
    Lasker's defence is when the enemy king has already entered the 6th rank and the defending rook should go behind the pawn (Tarrasch rule).

    Here is a video where GM Melikset Khachiyan Talks about the position in great depth.
    https://www.chess.com/video/player/t...askers-defence
    I've replied in this thread, as it's now clearly no longer on topic for the Qld Championship thread.

    As the position is not the 'main line', I did a little bit of research before my original post, to see if it should be credited to Philidor or someone else. And I found this link, where the defence that you assign to Lasker appears originally in Philidor's Analysis of the Game of Chess (1777).

    However, it is only in a variation, and Philidor's analysis is not entirely correct! So I think I agree with the intro to your video (the video itself is locked to me): "Although the name of this defensive idea may be debatable (is it Lasker's or Philidor's 2nd?), ... "

  5. #5
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    This is a very important position to know. The short-side rule makes the difference between drawing and losing.

    The original diagrammed position is draw, as stated. If White is defending, it is an easier draw if the R is directly behind the P, i.e. on c8 (Tarrasch rule as Brodie says). That is, if the previous moves were 1.Rg8-b8+ Kb3-c3, then an even easier defence was 1.Rc8.
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