Details are always very important in everything we do. One step to the left and the situation changes; one step to the right and the situation changes yet again. In your chess games moving any piece at any moment gives a complete new position to analyse. This is one of the main reason why chess is so atractive. The art is to be able to navigate the waters of so many possibilities and find your way home. This week you have a very good example how a small detail changes everything. Please go to puzzle of the week #52 and compare that position with the one above. Both puzzles have been created by the same chess lover Ion Andrew Dowman from Christchurch, New Zealand. Your tasks:
a) What is the difference between the two? (1 point)
b) White to move and mate in 2 (10 points)
c) Which White pieces should not move at the first move and why? (5 points for each correctly identified piece and correct reason; total 4 x 5 = 20 points)
Total available points for this puzzle is 31. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #61.
Puzzle #59 solution:
John provided a very nice story-solution:
"The White pieces are attacking the Black King which is very smothered. Black's only counter-play to stop White from playing a "mate in two" is f2, which threatens to promote into a Queen. But if White wastes time trying to stop Black from promoting, White won't achieve a mate in two. So White must play a move, which can mate against whatever move Black makes. Although this position has zugzwang in it too. After 1.Qg3 ... Black is in zugzwang.
1.Qg3!! 1...f1Q [1...Kxd1 2.Qg4#; 1...e3 2.Qg4#] 2.Rd2#
[1.Kc2?? e3 If White checks Black's Ke2, then it slips out to f3. No mate in 2. (f1Q also works) (1...f1Q 1. Kc2 doesn't work, because it's a little too slow, although White now protects Rd1, which frees up Qb3... but after this move, White doesn't have a follow-up mate in the next move)
1.Bb6?? Moving Ba5 to other squares are the same evil. 1...f1Q 2.Qe3+ Kxd1 This move doesn't work because White's Qb3 isn't protecting Rd1. No mate in two.
1.Rd2+?? Kf1 2.Qd1+ Kg2 No mate in two.
All the other Rook moves do totally nothing, cause it doesn't put Black is a zugzwang, so White doesn't have a mate in 2. Also moving the Rook doesn't make White's position better. E.g.: Playing 1. Rd4, Rd5, Rb1, Rh1, etc, Black plays 1...f1Q, Kf1, etc, White isn't close to achieving a mate in 2."
Karl, Joshua, Wilson, Andy Q, Andy Y, Mark, John, James, Katerina, Jeremy - 20 points
Jacky, Marcus - 15 point
Puzzle #58 Marcus - 15 points
Each wrong try gets a 1 point deduction in case of providing the correct solution.
John - 139 points
Joshua - 134 points
Jeremy - 132 points
Andy Qian - 131 points
Mark - 128 points
Andy Yee - 96 points
Karl - 92 points
Jacky - 80 points
James - 65 points
Wilson - 59 points
Humphrey - 51 points
Marcus - 47 points
Katerina - 45 points
Joanne - 21 points
Darren - 20 points
Nathaniel - 11 points
Overwhelming firepower (part 3)