The Danish Politiken Cup is a traditional chess tournament hold in Europe during the second half of July. It is a ten round Swiss open tournament with considerable cash prizes to atract a lot of good GMs and strong players from around the World. At this year's edition after 6 rounds the tournament leader is the Russian GM Boris Savchenko (22 years old) with a perfect score of 6 wins from 6 games. So far his performance is equivalent with a rating of 3151 when nobody ever has reached even 3000 since the FIDE rating system has been introduced!! Will see if he can continue to perform at such incredible level in the last 4 rounds.
In round 4 Boris (with Black pieces) played the following game: IM Tania Sachdev - GM Boris Savchenko. Tania managed to defend really well for 31 moves and considered her position strong enough to become a bit more aggressive; after 32.h6 ... they reached the following position (see diagram). You are in Boris shoes now and have to decide how to continue. Can you play like the GM did? Questions:
a) Analyse the position and decide what is the most likely result (5 points)
b) Come up with a possible line (no longer than 10 moves) at best play for both sides (5 points)
Total available points for this puzzle is 10. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #31.
Puzzle #29 solution:
Joshua responded: "Black's decision to resign was right because White can get the opposition in a King-Pawn endgame..."
Jeremy also wrote: "Black's decision to resign is correct because White is a pawn up... Black is now forced to exchange rooks and White will soon take all of Black's pawns."
Both of them are right in their assessment, the same as most the solvers. The big difference was made by the line each one came up with. I would like to say that winning a game does not have to be complicated or spectacular. The truth is a lot of times the winning line is simple and trivial, but quite a few cannot see it. The simplest one here is: 34... Rxg4 (or Black loses the second pawn) 35.fxg4 g5 (suggested by Joshua, Jeremy and Nathaniel) 36.hxg5+ Kxg5 37.Kf3 Kh4 (to block the White King) 38.a4! ... and now Black has to retreat 38... Kg5 39.Kg3 Kg6 40.Kh4 Kh6 41.g5+ Kg6 42.Kg4 Kg7 43.Kf5! Kf7 44.g6+ ... White will now sacrifice the g-pawn to be able to get to "e6" and capture a few Black pawns ("d6-c5-a5") in exchange.
Jeremy, Wilson and Nathaniel - 10 points
Joshua - 9 points
John - 7 points
TOP 10 STANDINGS
10.0 Jacob, Karl and Nathaniel
King in the center