Improve Your Chess: Quick Endgame Moves Turn Win into Draw Into Loss
Opening: D85: Gruenfeld Defense: Exchange Variation, Nf3
Black gets a slight advantage in an Exchange Variation of the Gruenfeld. In the middlegame White blunders a piece to a "sneaky pin" but Black makes a quiescence error and misses the easy win. Black then exchanges down into a superior endgame but decides to (correctly) break through before activating his king, creating a win, but a dangerous one. He then makes a further critical decision to trade into a won king and pawn endgame, but not because he figured out the tricky win. Black then assumes he only has one plan, and starts moving quickly, even though he has a lot of time. In one three-second move he throws away the win into a draw and a second three-second move immediately thereafter turns the draw into a loss! A grievous set of time management errors from which anyone who is prone to this type of "quick endgame play" should learn.