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Daily Chess Puzzle

July 1, 2018

Today’s problem is from the 1972 book “Chess Combination as a Fine Art”, a book based on articles published in the 1950s-1960s by Kurt Richter.

Since the start of 2018, I have decided to adopt the style of only saying which side is to play: and not giving an idea if the move wins or otherwise, unless on occasion I think signposting would be helpful. Instead, the problems are posed with the instruction to decide what you would play, as in a game.

White to play: evaluate 1 Rc7, as played in the game

(note: don’t look for a win for either side, but do look for best play: I looked for a win, failed to find it, but had an enjoyable time finding good moves for both sides)

Pos5

Lewis v Pines, Cape Town 1955

Solution

1 Rc7 leads to a (I think) drawn endgame. In the book/game, White mishandled it, putting his king on a white square from where the bishop can in a key line play an important discovered check. In my own analysis, I found the best line, but gave up, since it wasn’t winning, and then looked at the solution, and was slightly disappointed, thinking the problem was slightly “cooked”.

1…Be8! so that the Rc7 is properly pinned to the Bb7.

Pos6

2 h4 (giving the King luft; in the game 2Kf1 was played) g6 (freeing the K) 3 Kh2! 3…Kg7 4 Rc8[] Bd7 5 Rb8

Pos7

5…Ra2 6 Rd8[] Rf2+ 7Kg1 Rd2[] 8 Bc6 (an echo of the pin motif)

Pos8

8….Rd1+[] 9 Kf2 Bg4[] 10 Rd1 Bd1

Pos9

and I assume this position is drawn.

In the game, after 2Kf1? the similar line follows: 2..g6 3Ke1 Kg7 4 Rc8 Bd7 5 Rb8 Ra1+ 6 Kd2 Rb1 7 Ke3

Pos10

7…Bc6 (or 7…f5) 8 Bc6 Rb8 0-1.

Pos11

White resigned after 8…Rb8; I suspect a Carlsen or Caruana and many modern day players would carry on for some more moves. This last position is 1r6/5pkp/2B3p1/8/8/4K1P1/5P1P/8 w – – 0 9 if any reader wishes to play it on.

FEN

5k2/rBp2ppp/8/1b6/8/6P1/5P1P/2R3K1 w – – 0 1

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