Chess Endgame Fundamentals: Vancura Position

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60 Comments

  1. Also what if, after Rf8+, Ke5 Rf3, Ra2+, forcing white off the "safe" squares? Now black can try to get his king to b4, freeing up the rook to harass white's king, or to move the rook to the C-file to block any checks by white along the F-file.

  2. Hey John, I'm a super newbie and I don't understand how putting the rook on a3 makes it a draw. Cant the king just come over and push the rook away? Thanks.

  3. John, I'm curious, where did you get your chessboard?

  4. I still don't understand why white has to keep the king away from b4, can't white just check him from the side?

  5. John the technique specialist! Thanks John!

  6. isn't the position on 4:40 still a draw even if the pawn moved to A2 and the king was on B4 because rank checks will be unstoppable ??? i don't see a way for black to win in this position don't you agree ?? great video btw and keep up the good work

  7. John, in 4:32 you have the position after a2 where king protects a3 and you say that in this position black would win. I tend to disagree. White gives check on f4 and then keep checking along the f file. Black cannot make progress without leaving a file for white rook. I even checked with Nalimov endgame tablebases and it says I'm right

  8. thank u this endgame videos is very useful keep going>>>

  9. Hello John, just one small detail. Right pronunciation of Vancura is "Vanchura". in Czech his name is written with "č" – Vančura. Otherwise very nice video as usual, keep doing great job!

  10. what if: when the white rook is on the third rank attacking the pown, instead of moving the king, black move rook a2, checking the white king?

  11. A correction: at 4:30 I mistakenly said Black will win with …a2-a3. This is incorrect, because White can still check from the side, and if the Black king approaches the White rook the rook will swing over to the a-file. The position IS a win with Black to move, but Black should play …Rc1 or …Rd1, whereupon the pawn will advance. Thus, the position is winning (and therefore White should avoid falling in to that position with Black to move), but for a different reason than I described.

  12. hey john!!!! is it the dgt board u r using or is it a wooden board….

  13. When rook is on a3 can't black king make his way over and take

  14. Hey John, thanks for this very instructive video! I stumbled across the following game:
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1842641
    where after 53. Kd4 the engine and the commentators agreed that White is winning. Could you please elaborate on why Black can't use the strategy you described in this video (the Vancura Position) to defend?

    Many thanks in advance!

  15. Hey John! I'm not sure if you saw my comment on another one of your videos, but I was wondering which (if any) games of the world championship you're going to see? It would be really cool to meet you and watch you analyze the game while it's going on. The venue has a 'lounge' set up for the spectators, so we can play the game as it's happening and discuss moves with other people there.

  16. Like your demonstration board… Make /model???

  17. Consider reordering the videos in this playlist. This is the first video but it refers to the second video, "safe squares". Chronologically would make the most sense.

  18. John, I trust that you've filed your application for the Samford Fellowship? You've given the chess community 10x what the past several recipients of that award have given combined.

  19. This confused the hell out of me when I was studying it for the first time back then because when people learn chess endgames, from day 1 they are hammering it in your head that you're supposed to put your rooks behind passed pawns be it yours or your opponent's, haha.

  20. I absolutely love the chess set you are using. Could you possibly let me know where you got it?

  21. Humm some mistakes in this video… but still a great lesson. Thx John.

  22. That final position is a draw if it is white to move; however, if it's black to move then black will win. I think John mentioned this in the comments, but I just wanted to reiterate this.

  23. Brilliant. First time I heard of Vancura Position, and it is pretty cool. Very cool. It just amaze me how the rook is the 2nd most straight forward piece on the board, it just seems to be such an easy piece to anticipate; and yet still it can have resources hidden that are very hard to find.

    But even though the rook is very straight forward, it can only move in four directions, the fact that it has a max of 15 variables that can be assign to it on every move makes it a problem sometimes. For example if a rook was to fork two bishops on a file (winning a piece) in two moves, depending on how not obvious the problem is, this might take some time. Especially if you try to implement heuristics instead of a step by step algorithm.

    Rook to fork and win piece in two moves (function)
    {your Move 1 = Rook [15]; opp Move 1 = Variab [<33];
    your Move 2 = Rook [15];}

    Which look like this in the game tree/ Chess map.

    Rook [15] = 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15
    one _______________________________________________________
    var [<33] = 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1
    full var [<33] = 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2 2, 2, 2, 2, 2
    var [<33] = 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3
    move var [<33] = 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4
    var [<33] = 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5
    ___________________________________________________________

    Rook [15] on second move would be replicated 75 times for all of the 75 responses
    from opponent's var[<33] on 1st move. Rook [15] on second move = 15*75 = 1125
    moves.

    Alright all I just said sounds confusing especially that I wrote it as a pseudo code in a pseudo programming language; but let me explain. You want to solve a two move fork in which you only move your rook. It should be easy because the rook can only move to 15 different squares; and one of those 15 squares must be the answer to the puzzle.

    However, to find out which of those 15 moves is the correct answer you have to roll a dice! No, you have to think 2 more plies ahead. Which is a 75 moves on opponent's move and 1125 moves on your 2nd move.

    And it takes alot understanding combined with calculation, and usage of understanding that arise after concrete calculation to find out the answer. Especially in rook endgames like the Vancura position.

    All in all Chess is a game where every difference in variation counts.

  24. Love these endgame studies, so informative and instructive.

  25. John, please make an e-book on chessables about the petroff defense and its variations for black

  26. My question is what do you do if King marches over to B4 when your rook is sitting on A3?

  27. I got this position today and managed to draw it. 🙂 So happy you made these vids, it's good to have this knowledge in the back of your head because these situations will arise.

  28. Hey guys this is John my sister hates this channel but i love it

  29. I love ur videos. Thanks . Also what is the square size of ur board ? 2.5 inch ? I love how wide it is. Please reply

  30. Dude, these 8 endgame videos are amazing and are your best videos. You explain the concepts so succinctly compared to many other people who attempt this YouTube. You should totally make more endgame videos(!!). I'd watch them all and I know many others would too.

  31. What a dumbo instructor is this! After a3 the position is more drawn than ever. Rc1 however wins on the spot. This is what you get with instructors with elo < 1500…

  32. I think that the white will also draw if he pushes his king towards the cannon and the pawn by line 2.

  33. You can just create a barrier with Re8 or Ra5 it is simple draw maybe this was not the best way to illustrate the drawing method I think you should start with the black king close to the pawn so white is force to use the drawing method you want to illustrate.

  34. Great video.
    For your information, the name is Josef Vančura – the "c" is pronounced like "ch". And the accent is on the first syllable. So it sounds like VANchoorah. Not a criticism. I though you might like to know.

  35. i am using seirawan's winning endings book and this videos are really helpful. thanks for that ✌️

  36. John, what board is this? Where can I get one?

  37. long shot but what chess board/set do you have? Looks great.

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