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Every Russian Schoolboy Knows: Rook and Knight vs. Rook - Part 3

Opening: D17:

Player(s): Kramnik, Vachier-Lagrave

The viewer will surely notice that in the games presented in Video #2 the strong side had a rook pawn, which made it difficult for him to join his forces into a cohesive unit. As we "move" that pawn to a knight file for purposes of further study, the percentage of exceptions (draws) greatly diminishes. Yet, there are cases where the defender might survive. A recent game Kramnik-Vachier Lagrave shows that possibility. Expecting an automatic win Kramnik let an opportunity slide when he moved his king instead of grabbing a chance to improve his knight. Of course, that would have required discovering of some tactical patterns - checks, skewers and forks - and analyzing them carefully, which is not an easy task at the end of a hard game and when low on time. Two more similar endings to follow, and again, the attacker misses his/her chance.

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