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In positions with pawns only one file apart, the easiest win is achieved with the black pawn blockaded on the sixth rank. White’s spatial superiority is now much greater and the black counterplay against the b-pawn does not work. Since the d-pawn cannot win on its own, Black must by all means prevent the access to the b-pawn. Although some stalemate motifs may appear due to the proximity of the rim of the board, White will easily crush his opponent’s defence thanks to the fact that the black pawn has been blockaded on the sixth rank. The strategy in the first stage of the winning plan is analogous to that employed in the previous examples.


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GM Vlatko Kovacevic

Vlado Kovacevic is a chess grandmaster and an endgame expert. He very successfully competed on the national team. From 2000 – 2004, he acted as selector of the Croatian Men’s national team. He is also a well-known chess author.