Puzzle of the week #9

Submitted by oldadmin on Thu, 03/06/2008 - 21:54

Wrong corner

Chess Diagram
[Event "Puzzle #09"][Date "2008.03.06"][Result "1/2-1/2"][SetUp "1"][FEN "8/kb6/8/p7/8/5Q2/6KP/8 w - - 0 1"]
Time and time again we are entertained by the top players in the country or in the World; they are re-shaping chess as we know it. The chess board becomes the battle ground where the best are putting it on the line for a chance to create immortal moments of beauty. In the same time there is hope for us all out there, as we have something in common with them: we are all humans and sometimes play very much alike while blundering. This week we go back in time and pay tribute to a couple of pretty good players. The game Fischer (not the famous Bobby) - Ghitescu, Romania 1962 saw 2 top Romanian players reaching the following situation (see diagram). Here White had a long look at the position and could not find any hope in the fact Qf3 was pinned, Kg2 was out of the square and h2 too far behind. It did not seem fair with so many odds against him, so he resigned! Would you do that too? Well, not so fast please! There is a way to save a draw here. Tasks:
1. White to move and draw. Find the correct line (2 points)
2. What endgame rule applies here? (1 point)

This is a 3 points puzzle. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #10.

Puzzle #08 solution:
The Black pieces seem a bit out of position and unable to cooperate in harmony. Qg7 is blocked by its own pawns, Nd3 sits alone near the White camp and Kh5 is a bit cornered. Of course it helps that White moves first; the first move is kind of obvious and gives some mating idea hints.
The rule in question is Queen + Knight are better than Queen + Bishop. This is not true in our case here. See solution:
[Event "Puzzle #08"][Date "2008.02.28"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "8/6q1/6p1/4p2k/8/3n1P2/Q2B2P1/K7 w - - 0 1"]1.g4+ Kh4 {Now if we could only move Bd2 with tempo and threaten Qh2#, Black might be in trouble. Where can we move it with tempo though? How about attacking Qg7? Heh, this involves a sacrifice and once you think of doing it this way, it better be perfect. The following 2 moves are easy to play} 2.Bh6!! Qxh6 3.Qh2+ Kg5 {Now what? The King threatens to run away, so it must be stopped} 4.Qd2+ Nf4 {Now the winning move is easy to see} 5.Qd8#

Correct solutions:
Jacob, John D, Bryant, Frank - 2.0 points
Jeremy, Joanne, Algerd, David, Karen - 1.0 point

9.0 Bryant
8.0 Jacob and Jeremy
7.0 John D
6.5 Frank and David
5.0 Karl
3.5 Matthew, Algerd and Joanne
3.0 Karen
2.5 Katerina
1.5 Jakab and Nicholas
0.5 Alejandro, Vera, Mark, Kenneth and West