Open roads / blockades
Sometimes it is all about creating pathways for your pieces, or impenetrable blockades which will fully paralyse the opponent.
In round 7, Teimour Radjabov temporarily stabilized his position in the centre, but by doing so, he created an open road for Fabiano Caruana’s king to infiltrate later on.
Radjabov’s 29…f6 turned out to be a lasting weakening move. Caruana’s king marched on and decisively reached the g6-square eight moves later.
If the defensive side does not create a road for the opponent, the player with the advantage first needs to neutralize the defender’s counterchances. In the following position, Hikaru Nakamura fully blockaded Caruana’s play before making the final steps towards victory.
67.Ng2 creates an impenetrable blockade around Black’s chances to queen his e-pawn. White went on to win the game.
Find analyses for these two positions and two more endgames in the replayer below.