Puzzle of the week #166

Submitted by 64funadmin on Tue, 08/30/2011 - 21:26

Zugzwang (2)

Chess Diagram
[Event "Puzzle #166"][Date "2011.08.30"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "8/4k1p1/4p2p/4PP1P/6Q1/3q4/6PK/8 b - - 0 1"]1...Qxf5 2.Qxf5 exf5 3.Kg3 Kf7 4.Kf4 g6 5.hxg6+ Kxg6 6.g3 h5 7.e6 Kf6 8.e7 Kxe7 9.Kxf5 h4 10.gxh4 Kf7 {Draw}
It is amazing to know they were still playing competitive chess in Soviet Union during WW2. The best players of that time have left behind invaluable games for the generations to come; even during our worst times, we still have chances to create something nice and durable. This position comes from that dark time of our history and challenges you. White's attack is ready for the final push, as the 5th line full of White pawns and the White Queen are just waiting for their turn; luckily Black realises he can simplify everything to a Kings and pawns endgame and obtain the draw. The game continued as shown.
Your task is to decide which one of the following is true:
a) This is the best line for White. Explain what method Black used to obtain the draw
b) White could have played better; show how and what method could have been used

Total available points for this puzzle is 20. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #167.

Puzzle #165 solution:
Lisitzin puzzle. The winning idea was unique: force Black's hand using the zugzwang! One of the Black pawns would be forced to take the Knight and White could promote the g-pawn with mate. However the lines leading to this result were more than one. Here they are together with their authors' names:
[Event "Puzzle #165"][Date "2011.05.21"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "7k/4K1p1/6Pp/5N1P/8/8/8/8 w - - 0 1"]1.Nd6 {James} (1.Ng3 {James} 1...Kg8 2.Ne4 Kh8 3.Nf6 {Zugzwang} 3...gxf6 4.Kf7 f5 5.g7+ Kh7 6.g8=Q#) (1.Ne3 {Harmony} 1...Kg8 2.Nd5 Kh8 3.Nf6 gxf6 4.Kf7 f5 5.g7+ Kh7 6.g8=Q#) ({This is a wrong one} 1.Nd4 {Ziyao and Derrick} 1...Kg8 2.Nf3 Kh8 3.Ng5 Kg8 4.Ke8?? hxg5 {Black wins}) 1...Kg8 2.Ne8 Kh8 3.Nf6 {Zugzwang} 3...gxf6 4.Kf7 f5 5.g7+ Kh7 6.g8=Q#

Correct solutions:
James, Harmony, Derrick, Philip, Ziyao, Jeffrey, Leo - 10 points
Leroy - 9 points
Alex - 2 points

Ziyao - 359 points
Harmony - 355 points
James - 321 points
Philip - 312 points
Alex - 260 points
Leo - 253 points
Derrick - 210 points
Leroy - 187 points
Daniel - 175 points
Jeffrey - 168 points
Frank - 134 points
Kevin - 92 points
Eric - 29 points
Danny - 19 points
Karl - 13 points