Rook behind the passed pawn
Chess is full of wisdom. One piece of wisdom is that a rook must stand behind the passed pawn. This applies to both the attacker and the defender. The idea behind this is as follows:
- The rook defends the pawn when the pawn moves forward.
- If the rook is behind the other player's passed pawn, then the pawn cannot advance (unless it is defended along the way).
Pictures often provide more clarity than words, so let's look at the examples.
In Example 1, we see that placing the rook behind one's own passed pawn gives White the win.
In example 2, black places the rook behind the other player's passed pawn and thus makes a draw.
In Example 3, black can do the same as in Example 2, but it is awkward. The attacker then also places the rook behind the passed pawn and wins. It is better to give an intermediate check and then place the rook behind the other player's passed pawn. Black then wins the pawn.
In Example 4, as in Examples 2 and 3, a black rook is behind the passed pawn. This time black does not win the pawn, but because the white rook stands in front of its own pawn, the pawn does not advance either. The position is a draw.
What do you have to do?
Place the rook (cleverly) behind the passed pawn and cash in on your advantage.
Are you defending? Then place the rook (cleverly) behind the other player's passed pawn and make a draw.