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Daily chess puzzle

August 1, 2019

Today’s problem is from the July 1979 Chess magazine. I have hundreds (many hundreds) of magazines on my book shelves, and I thought I would dip into them; and thought I would start with going forty years back.

As has been my custom on this blog for a while, I 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

Freeman v Gras, Islington 1978


1 Rd7+ Kd7 is obvious, but then White must proceed with care.

It isn’t clear that if Black’s king can slip away to f5 (e.g. after Qb7+) that White will be able to mate him: the octopus on e5, and the threats on the back rank, will keep White busy.

Centralisation is the key. 2 Qd5+! is the winning move, looking in some lines at f7, in others at d6. 2…Ke7 3 Ra7+ Kf6 4 Ra6+!

is my engine’s best line (in the game, Michael played 4 Ng4+, which was also good enough to win. Too many lines to show, better for readers to study rather than see just a few of a possible (and some computer) lines.

I failed to solve this puzzle. My second move, 2 Ra7+, loses: I missed 2…Kd6 and running to c5 and beyond. My alternate second move, 2 Qb7+, is apparently three zeroes: there is a perpetual check line after best play.


7r/3pkppp/8/4n3/2p1Q3/2q1P3/4rPPN/R2R2K1 w – – 0 1

From → Chess

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