Winning a game requires being able to see more than your opponent. Sometimes a situation looks simple and obvious on the surface but as you look deeper, new gems of ideas could be discovered and give you the opportunity to find a better solution. Take a quick look at this position; it looks ready for a draw isn't it? White has a single Bishop and a pawn left; moreover the pawn seems to go nowhere. Are there any gems waiting to be discovered here? Can White obtain more than a draw?
a) Analyse the position and propose a winning plan;
b) White to move and win using your plan
Total available points for this puzzle is 20. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #98.
Puzzle #96 solution:
Indeed quite a few managed to come up with a good solution for White. The only missing part was the fact Black actually has a potential attack going on if she would be able to open up the "h-" file; then all of a sudden "Rh8" is involved in the attack together with "Qb7" and "g2". Owen's answer goes like this:
1. Material: White has 1x King 1x Queen 2x Rooks 1x Bishop 1x Knight and 5x Pawns. Black has 1x King 1x Queen 2x Rooks 1x Bishop 1x Knight and 7x Pawns. Conclusions: Black has the advantage by two Pawns.
2. King Safety: The White King is safer because the Black one is more attacked. If White moves his Knight, she has the Black King trapped. The White King is castled but with constant pressure from Black it looked like it got destroyed. The Black King hasn't castled yet so that's why he is trapped.
3. Positioning: White has a better position because of the attack that's building up by the Queen, two Rooks, Bishop, and Knight. All white has to do is move the Knight to trap the King. So white has to move the Knight but where?
1.Nf6+ gxf6 [If 1....Ke7 2.Qd6#]
2.Bxf6 ... White has moved his Knight so it has trapped the King and is threatening mate but also is attacking the Rook. [If 2....Rg8 3.Qd8+ Rxd8 4.Rxd8#] So black has only one choice:
2... Be7 3.Bxh8 Qf3 4.Re3 Qh3 5.Rg3 hxg4 6.Kxg2 ... and White has a winning situation.
Jeffrey, Humphrey - 20 points
Owen, Karl, Rick - 19 points
Andy - 16 points
James - 15 points
Alex - 10 points
Karl - 224 points
Owen - 204 points
Andy Q - 186 points
Rick - 184 points
Jeffrey - 135 points
Humphrey - 88 points
Nathaniel - 52 points
Alex - 60 points
James - 39 points
Peter - 25 points
Katerina - 22 points
Wilson - 7 points