Tag Archives: endgame combinations

Chess Endgame tactics: learn from master play

Filed under Chess lessons, Chess Tutorials, Endgame Tactics
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In the previous article, we suggested that by analyzing notable endgames as played by chess masters, you keep learning the finer points of endgame tactics. We are showing you two positions where you can see how sacrificial attacks can be launched against the King’s position.

In the first game, both Kings are relatively exposed but one player took advantage of it. While his opponent got a pawn promoted to Queen, he got his pawn promoted to a knight after making some sacrifices to create the opportunity! Though relatively rare, the use of under-promotion may be the only technique to win in some tight situations and you should keep this in mind as a possible tool to use. In the second game, one player used threats on both wings to pry open a fairly locked position, taking advantage of ‘overload’ on an enemy piece, the King itself!

The first game

attacking tactics in endgame

1. Rxc3  
2. g8=Q Nd2+  
3. Ka1 Rc1+  
4. Rxc1 b2+  
5. Ka2 bxc1=N+   5. … bxc1=Q would only produce a draw
6. Kxa3 Nc4#   If 6. Ka1 Ndb3+ 7. Kb1 a2+ 8. Kc2 a1=Q wins


What a beautiful combination! And does it violate the premise in endgame tactics that King and two Knights cannot deliver checkmate to a lone King (here it has a Queen and two pawns!)?

The second game

endgame tactics

1. b4  
2. axb4 Rxh4  
3. gxh4 g3  
4. fxg3 c3+   if the g3 pawn were not taken, Black would play 4. … g2
5. bxc3 a3  
6. Resigns   White King had too much on its hand! If it moves to block Black’s RP, Black captures the Bishop and promotes his f3 pawn. If White King does not leave its post, Black’s RP queens!


In the following game, in an equal position, White noted Black King’s cramped position. He exploited it by a remarkable Queen sacrifice followed by a quiet positional move that brings about opponent’s downfall!

a remarkable endgame combination

1. g4+ fxg4  
2. hxg4+ Kh4  
3. Qxh6+ Qxh6   The Queen offer had to be taken as otherwise Black would lose his own Queen!
4. Kh2   The checkmate by Bf2+ will follow soon