Endgame Series - Part 9



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Dear chess friends,
In the previous issue of Endgame series, we explained fundamental endgame concepts: key squares and short opposition. Today, we will extend understanding of these concepts by examining other types of opposition, namely: distant opposition, diagonal opposition, side opposition, and knight opposition. Once we understand all the possible ways to hold the opposition, we will be ready to analyze the final example, which I called "Opposition battle". In this position, kings are fighting for key squares using various types of opposition. One step on a wrong square brings the inglorious end of the battle for the defender. It is a subtle fight and, in a way, an aesthetic dance of the kings as they are exchanging attacks from a distance in a harmonious fashion. But first, we need to make sure to know our oppositions! We start with:
Distant opposition
Whereas the short opposition happens when two kings are on the squares of the same color one square apart, distant opposition is the one where they are three or even five squares apart. It is apparently a more sophisticated method, though essentially the same as the short opposition. Let us see examples:

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