MiddleGame Endings and Endgame Openings

What is an endgame, and what is a queenless middlegame? I'll look at a couple of the latter, then a game of mine which moved from one into the other. Lastly, I include some examples of lines to practice with.

Anon - Barcza (Debrecen) 1934

1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 Qxd5 4. Nf3 Bg4 5. Nc3 ? 5... Bxf3 6. Nxd5 Bxd1 7. Nxc7+ Kd7 8. Nxa8 Bxc2 9. Bf4 e5 10. dxe5 Bb4+

 

n+-+-+sT
Xx+j+xXx
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-L-+-B-+
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pPl+-PpP
R-+-Kb+r

The key themes of this position: rapid development, open lines, exposed king and giving up material or development - have little to do with the ending (pawn majority, rook on the seventh, active king, etc.)

11. Ke2 ?

[11. Bd2 Bxd2+ 12. Kxd2 Bf5 with about equal material]

11... Nge7 12. Nc7 Nd4+ 13. Ke3 Nef5# 0-1



Hubner - Benko (Hungary) 1976 [Mednis]

1. d4 g6 2. c4 d6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 e5 5. dxe5 dxe5 6. Qxd8+ Kxd8

 

tSlJ-+sT
XxX-+xLx
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pP-+-PpP
R-B-KbNr

A more complex queenless middlegame in modern master play

7. f4 Nd7 8. Nf3 c6 9. Be2 f6 10. O-O Ke8 11. g3 Nh6 12. Kg2 Nf7 13. Be3 Bf8 14. Rad1 b6 15. a3 Be7 16. Ne1 Bc5 ?!

  Black was afraid of Nd3 and; b4

17. Nc2 Bxe3 18. Nxe3 h5 19. b4 Bb7 20. Kg1 Rd8 21. h4 Nf8 22. c5

 

-+-TjS-T
Xl+-+s+-
-Xx+-Xx+
+-P-X-+x
-P-+pP-P
P-N-N-P-
-+-+b+-+
+-+r+rK-

White is better developed and starts to open lines - again, classic middlegame ideas, but not so much in the ending when direct attacks have little chance of success.

22... Rxd1 23. Bxd1 bxc5 24. Bb3 Nd7

[24...cxb4 25. axb4 and Rd1]

25. Rd1 Bc8 26. b5

  still working for open lines

26... cxb5 27. Nxb5 exf4 28. gxf4 Nb6 29. Nxa7 Bb7 30. Nb5 Ke7 ?

[30... Bxe4 31. Bxf7+ Kxf7 32. Nd6+]

[30... Bc6]

31. Bxf7 Kxf7 32. Nd6+ Ke7 33. Nxb7 Ra8 34. Nxc5 Rxa3 35. Kf2 Rc3 36. Rb1 1-0


Regis,D - Dobber,P (Paignton #3)

1. e4 d6 2. d4 e5 3. dxe5

[3. Nf3 of course transposes to the Philidor, but I thought the text was critical]

3... dxe5 4. Qxd8+ Kxd8 5. Bc4 f6 6. Be3 c6

[6... Nd7 ! 7. Nc3 Bc5 this idea my opponent showed me the following day; I think it equalises 8. Bxc5 Nxc5 9. O-O-O+ Nd7 10. f4 exf4]

7. Nc3 Kc7 8. O-O-O Nd7 9. f4 Bb4 10. Nf3 Ne7 11. fxe5 fxe5 12. Rhf1 Ng6

 

t+l+-+-T
XxJs+-Xx
-+x+-+s+
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-Lb+p+-+
+-N-Bn+-
pPp+-+pP
+-Kr+r+-

White is better mobilised but needs a breakthrough. The next phase shows White trying various ideas and angles ...

13. Ng5

[13. h4 h5 14. Bf7 Ne7 15. Be6 Bxc3 16. bxc3 Nf6 17. Bxc8 Raxc8 18. Nxe5 Rcd8]

13... Nf6 14. Bf7

[14. Nf7 Rf8 15. Bg5 Bxc3 16. Bxf6 gxf6 17. bxc3 Bg4 18. Rd2 Nf4 19. g3 Be2 20. Bxe2 Nxe2+ 21. Rxe2 Rxf7 22. Ref2 Raf8 23. g4 h6]

14... Ne7 15. Be6

[15. Ne6+ Bxe6 16. Bxe6 was worth a punt - next game!]

15... h6 16. Bxc8 Raxc8

[16... hxg5 17. Be6 Bxc3 18. bxc3 Rae8 19. Bxg5 Rxh2 20. Bxf6 gxf6 21. Rd7+ Kb6 22. Bf7]

17. Nf7 Ng4 18. Bg1 Rhf8 19. h3 Nf6 20. Nxe5 Bxc3 21. bxc3 Rcd8

  White has a pawn but it is very vulnerable

22. Bc5

[22. Rxd8 Rxd8 23. Nf7 is interesting: 23... Rd7 24. Bh2+ Kb6 25. e5 Nfd5 26. Kb2 Ne3]

22... Rxd1+ 23. Rxd1 Re8

  how to keep the pawn?

24. Bd6+ Kb6 25. Nc4+ Ka6 26. Rd4 Ng6 27. e5 Nd5 28. Rg4

  determined but inadequate: ...b5 will bring the house down

28... Re6 29. Kd2 b5 30. Nb2 Nxe5 31. Bxe5 Rxe5 32. Rxg7

 

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X-+-+-R-
j+x+-+-X
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pNpK-+p+
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32... Rg5

  Knight endings are harder to draw than rook endings but Black hoped to sac the knight for the K-side pawns and blockade on the Queen's-side

[32... Nf4 draws, I'm pretty sure 33. Rf7 Nxg2 34. Rf6 Rh5 35. Rxc6+ Kb7 36. Rg6 Nf4 37. Rg7+ Kb6 may even be better for Black]

33. Rxg5 hxg5 34. g3 Nf6 35. h4 Ne4+ 36. Kd3 Nxg3 37. hxg5 Kb6

  some careful footwork secures the win

38. c4 Kc5 39. cxb5 cxb5 40. g6 Nh5 41. Ke4 Kb4

[41... Kd6 42. Kf5 Ke7 43. Kg5 Ng7 44. Nd3 Ne6+ 45. Kh6 Kf6 46. Nf4]

42. Nd3+ Kc3 43. Nf4 Nf6+ 44. Ke5 Ng8

[44... Ng4+ 45. Kf5 Nh6+ 46. Kg5 Ng8 47. Nd5+ Kxc2 48. Nf6 Ne7 49. g7 Kb2 50. Nd5 Ng8 51. Kg6 a5 52. Kh7 b4 53. Kxg8 b3 54. axb3 Kxb3]

45. Nd5+ Kxc2

[45... Kb2 saves a move, but is still too late]

46. Nf6 Ne7

[46... Nh6 47. Kf4 Kb2 48. Kg5 Ng8 49. Nxg8 a5 50. Nf6]

47. g7 1-0


Endgame Openings

King's Indian Defence

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. dxe5 dxe5 8. Qxd8 Rxd8 9. Bg5

 

 

tSlT-+j+
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pP-+bPpP
R-+-K-+r

English Opening, Andersson-Book line

1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3. cxd5 Nxd5 4. Nf3 g6 5. e4 Nxc3 6. dxc3 Qxd1+ 7. Kxd1

 

 

tSl+jL-T
XxX-Xx+x
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pP-+-PpP
R-Bk+b+r

English Opening, Double Fianchetto

1. c4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. g3 b6 4. Bg2 Bb7 5. O-O g6 6. b3 Bg7 7. Bb2 O-O 8. Nc3 d5 9. Nxd5 Nxd5 10. Bxg7 Kxg7 11. cxd5 Qxd5 12. d4 cxd4 13. Qxd4+ Qxd4 14. Nxd4 Bxg2 15. Kxg2

 

 

tS-+-T-+
X-+-XxJx
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p+-+pPkP
R-+-+r+-

French Defence, Tarrasch Variation

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 c5 4. exd5 exd5 5. Bb5+ Bd7 6. Qe2+ Qe7 7. Bxd7+ Nxd7 8. dxc5 Qxe2+ 9. Nxe2 Bxc5

 

t+-+j+-T
Xx+s+xXx
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+-L-+-+-
-+-+p+-+
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pPpNnPpP
R-B-Kb+r

Sicilian Defence, Accelerated Dragon

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 g6 5. c4 Nf6 6. Nc3 Nxd4 7. Qxd4 d6 8. Bg5 Bg7 9. f3 O-O 10. Qd2 Be6 11. Rc1 Qa5 12. b3 Rfc8 13. Be2 a6 14. Na4 Qxd2+ 15. Kxd2

 

 

t+t+-+j+
+x+-XxLx
x+-XlSx+
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n+p+p+-+
+p+-+p+-
p+-Kb+pP
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Sicilian Defence, Dragon Variation

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 g6 6. Be3 Bg7 7. f3 O-O 8. Qd2 Nc6 9. g4 Nxd4 10. Bxd4 Be6 11. O-O-O Qa5 12. Kb1 Rfc8 13. a3 Rab8 14. g5 Nh5 15. Nd5 Qxd2 16. Rxd2 Bxd5 17. exd5

 

 

-Tt+-+j+
Xx+-XxLx
-+-X-+x+
+-+p+-Ps
-+-B-+-+
P-+-+p+-
-PpR-+-P
+k+-+b+r

Modern Defence, Averbach Variation

1. e4 g6 2. d4 Bg7 3. c4 d6 4. Nc3 e5 5. dxe5 dxe5 6. Qxd8+ Kxd8 7. f4

 

 

tSlJ-+sT
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pP-+-+pP
R-B-KbNr

Petroff Defence, Lasker Variation

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. Qe2 Qe7 6. d3 Nf6 7. Bg5 Nbd7 8. Nc3 Qxe2+ 9. Bxe2

 

 

t+l+jL-T
XxXs+xXx
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pPp+bPpP
R-+-K-+r

Ruy Lopez Exchange Variation

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. d4 exd4 6. Qxd4 Qxd4 7. Nxd4

 

 

t+l+jLsT
+xX-+xXx
x+x+-+-+
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-+-Np+-+
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pPp+-PpP
RnB-K-+r

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. O-O f6 6. d4 exd4 7. Nxd4 c5 8. Nb3 Qxd1 9. Rxd1

 

 

t+l+jLsT
+xX-+-Xx
x+-+-X-+
+-X-+-+-
-+-+p+-+
+n+-+-+-
pPp+-PpP
RnBr+-K-

Chess Quotes

One quote that I have heard attributed to Pascal (but don't know this for sure) is:
"Chess is the gymnasium of the mind."
— -- from Shawn Decker