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Pawn endgames can seem easy to play and understand. But even in so simple positions there are many subtleties.

I’m going to show some subtle nuances in king+pawn vs king endgame.

First thing to know is the rule of the square: if the defending king is inside the square of the promoting pawn then he can stop it

Black to move just enters the square of the a pawn with 1…Ke4 and its a draw.

If the defending king is already in the square of the pawn it is important not to push the pawn but reach, with the attacking king, the so called key squares:

Look at this example: b5,c5,d5 are the key square and White to move wins easily with 1.Kc4!!

This way he gets the so called OPPOSITION, Black is forced to move away and give access to a key square

I give a sample line:

1.Kc4 Kd6 2.Kb5 Kc7 3.Kc5 Kb7 4.Kd6 Kb6 5.c4 Kb7 6.c5 Kc8 7.Kc6 Kb8 8.Kd7 Kb7 9.c6 and White promotes and wins.

So it is clear that the battle for the key squares is often decided by which side gets the opposition.


There are many different kinds of oppositions:

1. Normal Opposition

2. Distant Opposition

3. Very Distant Opposition

4. Diagonal Opposition

Usually all these kind of opposition will in the end get to normal oposition, allowin to fight for the key square of the pawn.

So, it looks simple but in the endgame we will look at now things are a bit more complicated.


The following position is a study published in 1906 by chess composer Drtina.

White to move and win.

First thing to notice is that Black’s king is already inside the square of the c-pawn.

So, in order to win, White has to reach the key squares (b5, c5 or d5) with his king, BEFORE advancing his pawn.

Key squares will be reached through opposition: to get a win it is important that White reaches a position with King on c4 and Black’s king on c6, (opposition) BUT…. it has to be Black’s move, otherwise the opposition is lost by White!

Let us look at a wrong attempt by White:

1.Kd2 is wrong: how should black reply? Remember the different kinds of opposition!

Analysis of this wrong attempt, and the correct solution will be posted in our next chapter…;)

Meanwhile…have fun!!!


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When solving combination’s we should be accurate and confident with our answer
Do not solve combination’s as a group ; solve it individually.
Because, if others have found the solution while we haven’t, then they would have a tough time waiting for us.
Most important points in solving combination’s are Accuracy & Speed .

And if you did not spent quality time (15-20 min max) on solving a good combination then you would have lost an important aspect of your training i.e Tactical Accuracy. When we solve combination’s fast we tend to lose out on accuracy which is the most important reason for doing it in the first place!!


We all know that we must solve combination’s daily. Why ? Well it –

1.Help’s in development of intuition.
2.Help’s in understanding the role of the chess-pieces in a different light.












With his last move 55.Re1-d1 (diagram) White had initiated a deflection maneuver to promote his passed h-pawn.
The capture 55…Rxd1 now leads to …

A)… victory for Black
B)… perpetual check

Find the right continuation after black’s 55…Rxd1.. Is it a win for black or a draw?

You can mail the answers to coolchessgm@gmail.com or use the comments form below.. or use the contact form

Hmmm… The tournament has just finished and I scored 6.5/10. I lost my last round game from a dead draw position in time pressure and ultimately lost.

Well, In the penultimate round I was paired with a IM. I was not having any problem when paired against him. I drew that game from a clearly winning position for me.

This is the position where I took draw by perpetual checks. Because, I sacrificed my rook for a good position.

I thought why to take risk by moving any other piece and maybe I would lose. I was having  a lot of respect for my opponent I think…

Anyway highly instructive psychological lesson for me.

When I came home and I started analyzing the game where I missed 29. Nxd6, which was a clear advantage for white nearly +4 evaluation.

Well, It’s a lesson for me.


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This happened to me in a game with a 2000+ rated player. I was a piece up with 1 pawn up. I became over-confident. I was playing the game nearly 3 hrs and became tired. I a showing you the game and position which I misplayed but managed to win the game…

Coolchessgm vs NN
In this position I played Rg7. After Rg7 you may notice that black king has no square to move. My opponent played Bf3+ and I was under a shock for nearly about a minute. But managed to win it.

See the game fully and enjoy !!!

In this post I want to show my game against a 1700+ opponent. It was a good tactical game.
I didn’t perform well in the tournament. Just got 5.5 / 11.
Okay no problem, but I had some satisfaction after a 6 month hiatus.
Coolchessgm vs NN
In this position my opponent played Qg4.

This position arose after 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Bd7 4.Bxd7+ Qxd7 5. c4 Qg4.
You may be thinking that I am losing a pawn by force. But you may not have noticed that his Queen has moved twice and Queen should not come out when minor pieces are yet to be developed.

I thought here for a moment and played 6. 0-0 !

You can watch the game below and check out how I won the game. 

I request you to analyze the position after 6… Qxe4 and post suggestions in the comments area. 



Training Positions

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76,132 Studies by Harold van der Heijden - A mind-boggling effort by the author that took him 3 years of hard work (in perfecting...