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LudekPachman

The middle-game in chess

Translated by John Littlewood

~
~

Routledge & Kegan Paul

Lon d

on, Henley an d Melbourne

English trans/Qtion first published in 1982 by Routledge de Kegan Paul Ltd 39 Store Street, London WCJE 7DD, 296 Beaconsfield Parade, Middle Park, Melbourne, 3206, Australio, and Broadway House, Newtown Road, Henley-on-Thames, Oxon RG9 lEN

Set in Press Roman by Hope Services, Abingdon, Oxon and printed in Great Britain by Unwin Brothers Ltd Old Woking, Surrey

Copyright Cl 1977 by Wilhelm Heyne Verlag, Munchen English transliJtion C> Routledge de Kegan Paul 1982

First published as Mhtelspiclpraxis im Schach in 1977 by

Wilhelm Heyne Ver/Qg, Mr1nchen

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission from the publisher, except for the quotation of brief pasSilges In criticism

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

Pachman, Ludek

The middle game in chess. 1. Oless- Middle games

I. 1Ytle

II. Mfttelspielpraxis im Schach.

English

794.1'23 GVJ450.3

ISBN 0-7100-9071-4

Contents

 

Translator's preface

vii

1

Can the middle-game be taught?

 

1

2

Typical mating combinations

12

3

The elements of chess tactics

43

4

Attack and defence

90

s

Making plans

126

6

Effective use of pieces

 

136

7

'The pawns are the soul of chess'

163

Index

187

Translator' s preface

Alongside Nirnzovitch's. masterpiece My Sy stem and Euwe's splendidly conceived Judgement and Planning in Chess it is fair to place Pachman's classic Modem Chess Strategy as having done for chess what Culbert­ son's books once did for bridge. However, one must admit that begin· ners and even average clubplayers have sometimes found such volumes a little above their heads, with occasional concepts, if not entirely meaningless, often demanding from them a degree of sophistication beyond their chess experience. It is for such players that Pachman has written the present volume. Recognising that at this stage a sound knowledge of tactics is indis· pensable before strategy can be properly understood, he devotes the

first half of the book to a comprehensive treatment of combinational elements. Only then does he examine practical aspects of strategic planning in attack and defence, highlighting that subtle blend of tactics

and strategy which is the hallmark of all great players. Following Pachman's instructive volume on the chess openings, this

book will prove an invaluable addition to Routledge & Kegan Paul's well-known chess series.

John littlewood

Ch apter 1

Can the middle-game be taught?

Many chess-players limit themselves to studying two aspects of theory:

openings and end-games; the former in particular being grossly over·

valued. There is a desire to achieve rapid victory by learning opening

variations off by heart and overwhelming the opponent in the early

stages. Of cou rse,

is essential if one is to achieve results against strong players. Equally, in

the fmal stages of the game it is of little use to rely solely on one's own

resources; a number of standard theoretical positions have to be part of

the arsenal. However, even in both these cases it is often far more

important to have a grasp of general principles so as to be able to react

to unexpected turns of event. I have heard beginners complain that,

despite all their assiduous book-learning, they have often come out of

the opening with a lost game although they knew the theory of that

opening far better than their less industrious but more experienced

opponent! Clearly, parrot-learning without an understanding of the

basic principles is rarely effective.

In the middle-game there are so many possible positions, so many

variations, that it is seldom we meet the sam� game more than once. In

other words, the middle-game can hardly be learnt in the same way as

openings or endings. Nevertheless, it is vitally important to have at

one's disposal a number of general strategic guidelines and a wealth of

specific tactical ideas. Such knowledge enables a plan to be formed

and then carried out. In chess, as in warfare and politics, strategy tells

us wh at we should be aiming to do in a given position (bearing in mind

that our opponent too has his own plans!), whilst tactics tell us how to set about doing it.

a fairly comprehensive knowledge of opening theory

Strategy and tactics are intimately linked in every game, since

without the fo rmer our play is rudderless and without the latter we

cannot achieve solutions. Of course, there are times when one element

outweighs the other, so it will prove useful if we begin by examining

two games from these two aspects: when is it essential to calculate each

d4

2 I Can the middle-game be taught?

move with precision, looking out for possible surprises or traps from our opponent and trying ourselves to fmd a decisive combination; and when on the other hand is it more important to pursue a fiXed plan, subordinating all our tactics to this end?

a fiXed plan, subordinating all our tactics to this end? Game 1 French Defence K. Richter

Game 1

French Defence

K. Richter Abramavicius (Hamburg, 1930)

1

2

3

4

s

6

7

8

e4

Nc3

BgS

Nxe4

Bxf6

Nf3

Bd3

e6

dS

Nf6

dxe4

Be7

Bxf6

Nd7

0-0?

White's last move is fairly hannless but Black should react energetically

cS! giving him equal chances. Castling, usually

a good way of placing the king in safety, is premature here. White can now castle long and launch a dangerous attack on the enemy king, as

with the immediate 8

we shall see.

9

10

cS
cS

Qe2

0-0-0!

White's plan is simple and clear: his three minor pieces in conjunction with the advance of his g and h pawns will form the basis for an attack on the king.

10 cSxd4

11

g4!

(see next diagram)

White could of course capture the d pawn by 11 Nxf6+ Qxf6 12

Qxd4?? fails to 13 Bxh7+ winning the queen, an

example of a discovered check combination. We term 'combination' a

series of moves containing a surprising idea and usually involving a

sacrifice. In this instance a beginner would be surprised by 12 Nxd4

leaving the knight unprotected, but only apparently sol However, this continuation would pose few problems for Black, as we can see if we examine the line 11 Nxf6+ Nxf6 12 Nxd4 QaS 13

Nxd4, when 12

-••• ·i·�·i·i • .i. • fl ••• ·4J·ft· • 8-'l84J. ftllft.*B B . ��- .
-•••
·i·�·i·i
.i.
fl
•••
·4J·ft·
8-'l84J.
ftllft.*B
B
.
��-
.

Can the middle-game be taught? I 3

Abramavicius (black)

K. Richter (white)

(1)

14 Nb3 Qc7 15 Rhe 1 ReS (guarding the e pawn) 16 Bb5 Bd7, etc.

(2)

14 Nf3. Black cannot now save his centre pawn by 14

Re8

because of 15 Bb5, but he can utilise the pin 14

venting 15 Nxe5?? since a piece of higher value js standing 'behin d'

the knight, allowing 15

Bg4 ! thus pre­

Bxe2, or here 15 Qxe5? Qxe5 16

Nxe5 Bxdl etc. (3) 14 Nb5. Again the centre pawn is attacked, but after 14

Dd7!

White cannot capture it, since afte r 15 Qxe5? a6 there is another pin on his knight along the rank.

g4 ! White elects to leave the d

pawn alone, a bold decision which has to be backed up with a careful evaluation of fu ture possibilities. After all, pawns cannot be thrown away lightly, since an extra pawn can oft en prove sufficient to win a game. It is sometimes possible to cal culate a sacrifice through to a clear win, but pawn sacrifices are usually based or:� an intuitive assessment in which experience and positi onal sense play a great part.

Coming back to the game, with 11

11

.

g6

Black must try to maintain his bishop on the a l -h8 diagonal. If he plays

11

with h4-h5 fo ll owed by the breakthrough g6 or h6. Meanwh ile Black

must keep control of f6 to prevent the po ssible sacrifice Nf6 + opening

the g file if

e5 then White plays 12 g5 Be7 13 Rdgl and continues his at tack

gxf6 has to be played.

ll

Bg7
Bg7

hS

ReS

h4

The correct way to open a fl.le when a black pawn stands on g6.

12

13

4

I Can the middle-game be taught?

A useful defensive move in such positions, freeing f8 for hls knight to guard h7 against the threat of Qfl-h3 followed by hxg6 and Qh7 mate.

14

hxg6

hxg6

It is often hard to decide which pawn to capture with in such positions. Taking with the f pawn allows his major pieces to defend along the second rank and keeps open the option of a possible h6, but Black chooses to capture with the h pawn in order not to weaken his e pawn, hoping to have enough protection of his h7 and h8 squares and banking on a rapid counter-attack down the c fJ.I.e.

IS

gS!

Not only creating a strong-poin t on f6 for his knight which occupies the

square with decisive effect in seven moves' time, but also preventing the

freeing moves

Nf6 or

f5 .

IS

16

17

18

also preventing the freeing moves Nf6 or f5 . IS 16 17 18 Rh4 Rdhl Qfl

Rh4

Rdhl

Qfl

eS

Nf8

BfS

ReS

Ne6 in order to block the h flle by Nf4-h5

and at the same tl!n e give his king an escape square on f8. Richter then

intended 19 Qg2 Nf4 20 Qh2 NhS 21 Ng3 ! Bxd3 22 NxhS Qc7

(threatening mate on c2!) 23 Nf6+! Kf8 (if 23

followed by mate) 24 Ne l! not only threatening the bishop and the

rook, but also NdS and Rh8+ mating. We must also mention that 18 Bxe4 allows 19 Qh3 ! when there is no defence to 20 Rh8+!

Black could also play 18

Bxf6 24 Rh8 +!

2

to 20 Rh8+! Black could also play 18 Bxf6 24 Rh8 +! 2 Abramavicius (black) K.

Abramavicius (black)

K. Richter (white)

I

Black now plans a counter-attack down the c me with a line StJch as

. Bxe4 20 Bxe4 d3 ! hoping to defend against mate by a later

19

.

.

Can the middle-game be taught? I 5

f6. White settles matters with a pretty combination , howeve r, giving Black no time for any of this.

19

Rh 8+ ! !

Bxh8

20

Rxh8+

Kxh8

21

Qh1+

Nh7

King moves also lose quickly: if 21

Kg8 22 Nf6+! Qxf6

24 Qh6 Rxc2+ 25 Kd 1 Ne6 26 Ng5 ! with the latter

move in each variation being an example of deflection of the vital defender on e6 by White's knight on g5 . We sha ll often meet simil ar

situations.

Kg7 22 Qh6 + Kg8 23 Nf6+

Qxf6 24 gxf6 Ne6 25 Ng5 ! wins; or if 21

23 gxf6 Bxd3

22

Nf6

Kg71

Losing at once but even the better 22

ficient after 24 BxfS when 24

mate, and 24

24

simultaneously, a so-called fork.

Qxf6 23 gxf6 Kg8 is insuf­

gxf5 fails to 25 Qgl + followed by

Rc7 25 Qh4! gives White a material advantage. If here

Rc6 then 24 Bd7 wins the 'exchange' by attacking both rooks

23

Qh6+

Resigns

Game 2 Queen's Gambit Capablanca Alekhine (Buenos Aires, 1927)

1

d4

dS

2

c4

e6

3

Nc3

Nf6

4

BgS

Nbd7

s

e3

Be7

6

Nf3

0-0

7

Rei

a6

8

a3

The 'Orthodox Defence' to the Queen's Gambit. Black's usual play on

move 7 is

8 c5, whereas Capablanca's move is too passive and allows Black a

a6 White should continue with 8 cxdS or

c6. After 7

speedy development of his Q side.

8

9

Bh4

h6

dxc4

6 I Can the middle-game be taught?

11 Bel

Bb7

12 0-0

c5

13 dxc5

Nxc51

taught? 11 Bel Bb7 12 0-0 c5 13 dxc5 Nxc51 Despite the seemingly peaceful nature of

Despite the seemingly peaceful nature of the position, there are still tactical points to note. White should now try 14 Bxf6 with two vari· ations:

\

(I)

14

gxf6,

weakening his K side pawn position, but this is of

little significance in view of Black's advantage of the two bishops.

We shall see later why in most positions two bishops are stronger

than knight and bishop or two knights.

(2)

14

Bxf6, when White can exploit the unprotected knight on

c5 by 15 Nxb5 ! Qxd 1 16 Rfxd1 Nb3 (after 16

RxcS Bxb2 18 Rxb5 Bxf3 19 Bxf3 Rab8 20 a4 White is a pawn up) 17 Rc7 Bxf3 18 Bxf3 axb5 19 Bxa8 Rxa8. After the game Alekhine gave this variation as better for him, but this is not the

case. Normally of course two minor pieces are much better than a

rook, and a pawn is rarely sufficient compensation, but here White

can win a second pawn by 20 Rb7 since 20

RxbS Rxa3 22 Rb 1 etc. However, Black can maintain the balance

by 20

without losing- the exchange to

axb5

17

.Bxb2? fails to 21

Nc5 ! 21 Rxb5 Na4. White cannot advance his b pawn

Nc3 and if instead 22 Rd2 then

22 Nxb2! 23 Rdxb2 Bxb2 24 Rxb2 Rxa3 the draw is clear.

1hi.s is an example of a forced manoeuvre, beginning with 15 Nxb5. Both players must follow a defmite line of play to avoid some dis­ advantage . A different kind of manoeuvre is seen when there are no threats or capture of material involved, such as when we regroup our pieces; these are of a more strategic than a tactical nature, and the order of moves is not always so important. After the game continuation, however, Black already stands better, so Capablanca should at least have exchanged queens.

Nd4(?)

14 Rc8

15 b4(?)

at least have exchanged queens. Nd4(?) 14 Rc8 15 b4(?) Such careless moves are typical of

Such careless moves are typical of an inexperienced player. The fact that a World Champion is involved here only confinns the accepted opinion that Capablanca was well below form for this decisive match. (See next diagram) The move b4 creates a serious but by no means obvious weakness in White's position: the c4 square. It is to this square that first the black rook then the knight will penetrate to great effect.

3

3 Can the middle-game be taught? I 7 Aljechin (black) Capablanca (white) In fact Black's main

Can the middle-game be taught? I 7

Aljechin (black)

Capablanca (white)

In fact Black's main strategic plan within the next fe w moves is based on this weakened square. It is important for the reader to note how often games are decided not by inunediate material gain or a rapid mate, but by the creation and exploitation of sm all positional ad­ vantages.

.

A su rprising but

of c4. The seemingly powerful 15

.

very strong retreat, based of course on the occupation

Nce4 on the other hand would

allow too many exchanges after 16 Nxe4 Bxe4 17 Bf3; or here 16

Nxe4? loses to 17 Rxc8 Bxc8 18 Nc6 Qxd 1 1 9 Nxe7+!

a typical example of a zwischenzug.) 17 Nxf6+ Bxf6 18 Qxcl Bxh4

19 Bf3 etc. It is subtle points like this that reveal the true master, rather

than the calcu lation of standard combinations!

IS

Ncd71

.

Rxcl (1 6

16

Bg3

White avoids a possible exchange of this bishop (by

shows that he is not yet fully aware that he stands worse and should be

Ne4), which

striving for equality . lt is vital to protect his c4 by 16 Nb3 ! followed by

that after 16 Bf3 Qb 6 17 Ne4 Rxc l IB Qxc I Black is first

NaS. Note

to occupy the c file, with advantage. We shall con sider later the impor­

tance of open lines.

16

17

Qb 3

Nb6

NfdS!

Exch anges can also play their part in an attack, since Black now

threatens IB

Nxc3 19 Rxc3 Bd5 20 Qb2 Rxc3 21 Qxc3 Qa8

followed by

ReB, not only seizing the c me but also controlling the

long diagonal (h l -aB), thereby incre asing the effectiveness of his piece s.

8 I Can the middle-game be taught?

8 I Can the middle-game be taught? IS Rc4! Ne4 QcS Rxc4? Bfl Whi t e

IS

Rc4! Ne4 QcS Rxc4?
Rc4!
Ne4
QcS
Rxc4?

Bfl

White understandably wishes to challenge the diagonal, but as a result lets Black in on c4.

lS

19

20

The decisive error. White's last chance lay in holding on to the vital c

ftle by 20 Qb l! threatening 21 Nd6 and if 20

22 Rxcl Qa8 23 Bc7! and 24 Bxb6, almost neutralising Black's ini­

tiative.

Rd8 21 Nd2! Rxcl

20

.

.

.

Nxc4

21

Ret

QaS!

A typical manoeuvre in modem chess ; Black's queen is posted on the diagonal behind a weaker piece, thus doubling up in a similar way to the dou bling of rooks on a fl.le or rank. He now threatens to win a

pawn by

Nxb4, and if 22 NcS BxcS 23 bxcS ReS 24

Be2 RxcS 25 Bxc4 Qc8! the pin of the bishop again wins a pawn.

Ndxe3 or

22

Nc3

ReS

23

NxdS

BxdS

24

BxdS

QxdS

lS a4
lS
a4

Capablanca (white)

Whit� cannot tie his queen down permanently to the defence of his a pawn , but a further weakness now appears on b4! Let us again consider the problem of exchanging pieces. Black has allowed the exchange of two minor plecea (bishop and knight) and one

Can the middle-game be taught? I 9

trllljor piece (a rook), and yet we were reconunending the use of ex­ changes as a method of equalising! The contradiction is only apparent, because exchanging pieces is often the correct and indeed only way of increasing or exploiting a positional advantage, provided that it is our least active pieces we are exchanging for our opponent's most active

ones, never of course the other way round! Alekhine has managed to do this; he has exchanged his 'bad' bishop on b7 for White's 'good' bishop on f3. It will surprise most readers that we refer to Black's beautifully posted Q bishop as 'bad', so let us explain our terms by looking again at the diagrammed position, and asking ourselves the question: which

pawns can the bishop on g3 attack? The answer is, practically none.

Even if it could reach e5, which it cannot, and apply pressure on the g7 pawn, this pawn is guarded by the king and can later (in the ending)

move to g6. The same applies to the h6 pawn.Contrast this with the pawn set-up on the Q side: White's b4 pawn is ftxed by the pawn on b5 and vice versa. Such blocked pawn positions are particularly significant from a strategic point of view, when we compare the attacking poten­ tial of each side's black-squared bishop. Tills gives us the important principle: in positions with blocked pawns, a 'good' bishop is one which

is of the same colour as the squares on which the enemy pawns are placed, whilst a 'bad' bishop is one which is restricted by its own pawns.

We can now ask if White's 25. a4 has only served to increase the potential of Black's K bishop. 'This is not so, because even with the pawns on a3 and b4 the e7 bishop is 'good' and the g3 bishop 'bad'. We can see this clearly if we visualise an ending with only the bishops on

the board; the black bishop would in that case immediately win a pawn if it reached b2.

·

25

.

Bf6!

Black surprisingly gives up his attack on the b pawn, since he wishes to

drive the knight away from its strong central post. Note that this could

not be achieved by 25

eS? 26 NfS! Bf6 27 f3, threatening 28 e4

which would make Black's bishop 'bad' (blocked by the eS pawn),

when 27

e4 fails to 28 Nd6! since Black's knight is pinned.

26

NO

Bbll

An original idea, disturbing the co-ordination of White's pieces by driv­ ing the rook to a less active square because more favourable squares are tactically dangerous, i.e. (1) 27 Rd l, surely the most natural square attacking the queen, fails to

10

I

Can the middle-game be taught?

the interesting 27

Rd l Nc3 31 Re l Rc4 32 Bd6 Ne4 33 Be7 f6 34 Rb l Kl7 35 Kfl _Bel and the b pawn falls.

bxa4!

28 Qxa4 Nb6! 29 Rxd5 Nxa4 30

(2) 27 Rbl Na3! 28 Qxb2 Nxbl 29 Qxbl Qb3! wins, because 30

Qxb3? allows a back-rank mate by 30

along the unprotected back rank is common enough to warrant our

constant vigilance. It is amusing to note that if Black's h6 pawn

had been on h7, White himself could have answered 26

with 27 Qxb2! Nxb2 28 Rxc8+ fo llowed by mate!) Of course, the white queen can move' away, but aftef 30 Qfl bxa4! Black's

passed pawn wins the game fo r him .

Rcl+ etc.(Such a mate

Bb2

27

Rei

Rd8

28

axbS

axbS

29

h3

Beginners must be careful not to make such moves without a specific purpose, but here it is essential to cut out the chance of a back-rank mate.

29 eS!

Now this is strong. because it no longer restricts the power of his bishop and if now 30 e4 Qd31 31 Qxd3 Rxd3 32 Rbl f6 , the weak pawn on b4 will soon be lost.

·

30

31

Rbl

Nd4

e4

A fmal desperate attempt which Black refutes by a little combination, but other moves are just as bad, i.e.

(1) 31 Net Qd2! (threatening to win at least the e pawn by

Bel)

(2)

32 Qc2 Qxc2 33 Nxc2 Rd2 34 Net Na3 and the white rook is captured in amusing fashion. 31 Nh2 Qd3! 32 Rxb2 (after 32 Qxd3 exd3 the black passed pawn Is unstoppable) Qxb3! 33 Rxb3 Rd l+ 34 Nfl Nd2 35 Ra3 Nxfl ! (better than the obvious check which leads nowhere) and

there Is no real defence to the threatened discovered check by the

knight e.g.after 36 Bc7 Nxe3+ fo llowed by 37 a won ending.

NdS Black has

31

Bxd4

discovered check by the knight e.g.after 36 Bc7 Nxe3+ fo llowed by 37 a won ending.

33

33 Resigns Can the middle-game be taught? I 11 He must lose a piece after 33

Resigns

Can the middle-game be taught? I 11

He must lose a piece after 33 QxdS RxdS when 34 fxe3 Bxe3+ wins the rook. This game has taught us several important points about strategy and tactics, but above all we have seen something of the thought processes of an expert player as he plans his game, even if we may not understand it all. It would seem logical to begin by examining what to do in a game (i.e. strategy) rather than how to do it (i .e. tactics), but this would be contrary to the established teaching method ofgoing from the concrete to the abstract or, if you like, fr om the simple to the more complex. For this reason we shall first examine principles and examples from the realm of tactics.

Chapter2

Typical mating combinations

The chess public is greatly impressed by combinations in which material is sacrificed to bring about a rapid mate, such games being awarded brilliancy prizes and acclaimed in the Press, but our problem is whether we can acquire the tactical skill to produce fmishes like these. Each position seems so different and requires such creative imagination that it appears impossible to learn the art of combination. However, this is only partially true. Of course, original ldeaa and surprising twists are always cropping up (thankfully!), but most com­ binations can be broken down to various common elements which occur frequently and are readily learnable. Let us examine some basic mating combinations which have already occurred in countless games, admittedly within varying contexts but essentially containing the same idea. One of the commonest and therefore most important of these is the so-called smothered mate with queen and knight, known for many centuries, illustrated in the following composed position.

·

5

illustrated in the following composed position. · 5 Composed position a l (Q)+ so must act

Composed position

a l (Q)+ so must act at once.

Clearly 1 Qf7+ Kh8 is useless, and it seems at first that White is forced

to take the draw by perpetual check with I QdS+ Kh8 (Kf8? 2 Qf7

White is threatened by the terrible I

Typical mating combinations I 13 mate) 2 Nf7+ Kg8 3 Nh6++ K.h8 4 Nf7+ etc.

Typical mating combinations I

13

mate) 2 Nf7+ Kg8 3 Nh6++ K.h8 4 Nf7+ etc. However, this very line

Kh8 White has the beautiful

4 Qg8+!! Rxg8 5 Nf7 mate. Now let us see this idea utilised in a game position.

gives us a clue to the solution: after 3

in a game position. gives us a clue to the solution: after 3 Trifunovic (black) Opocensky

Trifunovic (black)

Opocensky (white)

Black played I tured in view of

4 Kg2

Nxe l + lost him the 'exchange', i.e. a rook for a minor piece. The knight is a splendid piece for tactical surprises, as we see in the next position.

Qxd3 Qc5+ 4 Re3).So White replied 3 BO when 3

Ng4 2 Qe2 Nd3! since neither knight can be cap­ Qc5+ mating as above or winning the rook (after 3

Qc5+

cap­ Qc5+ mating as above or winning the rook (after 3 Qc5+ Praszak (black) Enden (white)

Praszak (black)

Enden (white)

White first of all stops the black king escaping to the back rank by play­

ing I. Re8 and after 1

Nh5 mate. An unusual form of smothered mate occurs when two knights are involved, as in the following couple of typical examples.

.Qc7 produces the pretty 2 Qxg5+! fxg5 3

14

I Typical mating combinations

14 I Typical mating combinations Eisenschmidt (black) Clemens (white) After the preliminary I Ba3 ! which

Eisenschmidt (black)

Clemens (white)

After the preliminary I Ba3 ! which is essential in order to prevent

. way to stop mate on f7) 3 Qf7+!! Nxf7 4 Ne6 mate. This Q sacrifice has been known since the Middle Ages and repeated many times sub­ sequently, proof once again that combinations are learnable !

Qxa3 2 Qe6 Nd8 (the only

I

.

.

Qxe l

mate, play continued I

Qxa3 2 Qe6 Nd8 (the only I . . Qxe l mate, play continued I Sampomo

Sampomo (black)

Thorwaldsson (white)

Black first plays I

Qxf3+ (3 Qg2? would

lose the rook on d 1 ) , so he settles fo r 2 Ng3 only to fm d that even

worse is in store for him after 2

Analogous to the smothered mate with the knight is the diagonal mate by a bishop, although not as frequent, which we see in the next position .

replies 2 Bxf3 he loses his knight after 2

Nf3 threatening mate on h2. Now if White

Qxg3! 3 fxg3 Nxg3 mate.

(See next diagram) Black fo rces mate by first blocking an escape

square of the white king with I

off with 2

ln this example the diagonal onto the king was already open, but in other cases it is necessary to create an open line for the bishop, as in the

Qfl +I 2 Bgl and then fmishing him

Qf3+! 3 Bxf3 Bxf3 mate.

10

10 Typical mating combinations I Pillsbury (black) A. N. Other (white) 15 well-known trap against the

Typical mating combinations I

Pillsbury (black)

A. N. Other (white)

15

well-known trap against the Dutch Defence: 1 d4 f5 2 8g5!? h6 3 Bh4 gS 4 8g3 f4? 5 e3! (threatening both 6 Qh5 mate and simply 6 exf4)

Rh6? then 7 Qxh5+! Rxh5 8 Bg6

mate. There is a similar outcome from the opening stages of a game in the following position.

S h5 6 Bd3 and if now 6

of a game in the following position. S h5 6 Bd3 and if now 6 Eperjesi

Eperjesi (black)

Perenyi (white)

From a sharp line in the Caro Kann Defence, White concludes attract­ ively with 1 Nc6 Qc7 2 Qxe6+!! fxe6 3 Bg6 mate. The shortest game

in chess, the so-called 'Fool's mate', also utilises a diagonal as follows:

1 f3? e5 2 g4?? Qh4 mate. Mates by minor pieces alone are fairly corrunon, and opening theory provides us with yet another interesting example: 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 d5 (the Griinfeld Defence) 4 cxdS NxdS 5 e4 Nxc3 6 bxc3 cS 7 Bc4 Bg7 8 Ne2 Nc6 9 Be3 cxd4 10 cxd4 Qa5+!? 11 Bd2 Qa3 12 Rb1 0.0 13 dS? NeS 14 Bb4? (See next diagram) Black now wins with the startling move 14

16 I Typical mating combinations

1 2

16 I Typical mating combinations 1 2 Variation of Grunfeld Defence In similar vein, a minor
16 I Typical mating combinations 1 2 Variation of Grunfeld Defence In similar vein, a minor

Variation of

Grunfeld Defence

In similar vein, a minor piece mate arose in our next position.

After I

a minor piece mate arose in our next position. After I Termer (black) Field (white) Qh3

Termer (black)

Field (white)

Qh3 ! ! White resigned at once In view of 2 gxf3 Nxh3 rnate.

Or yet again, from a game played In the U.S.S.R. in 1974:

14

Kalinski (black)
Kalinski (black)

White sacrificed both rooks by 1 RxhS +! gxhS 2 RxhS+ ! NxhS in order to bring about a minor piece finish with 3 Nxf7 + Kh7 4. Bd3 + and mate next move.

Typical mating combinations I 1 7 We have already met the back-rank mate which is

Typical mating combinations I 1 7

We have already met the back-rank mate which is a common fe ature ol combinations with the major pieces. It is essential to bear in mind this danger whenever our first rank is left denuded!

15

• ••• • • • • :t•:t •:t• • • fl II • • •
•••
:t•:t
•:t•
fl
II
R
II
ftB
B
II
II
� �
R
B
• � l::Hf�
FW"' li!JI

Composed position

In this composed position the only piece guarding Black's back rank is his rook , but White removes this control as follows: 1 Qe7! when 1

Rf8 then 2 Rd8 Qc I+ 3 Kg2

h6

Rxe7 allows 2 Rd8 mating, and if 1

g6 6 QeS still leads to mate on h8 by the

rook or queen. We shall be returning later to this type of mate.

4

Rxf8+

Kh7 5 Qe4+

16

returning later to this type of mate. 4 Rxf8+ Kh7 5 Qe4+ 16 Ljunquist (black) Jvarsson

Ljunquist (black)

Jvarsson (white)

White is threatening to open up the c ftle onto the enemy king, so Black

plays 1

but also tlueateni.ng

by mate, and 2 Rce2 Qxe2 ! are insufficient, White must try 2 Qc 3, but

now 2

back-rank mate. We cannot resist

quoting the beautiful fmish fr om a fa mous game Adams­

Bd2 ! 3 Rxe4 Bxc3 wins at least a rook in view of the possible

Qxe l mate. As both 2 Rxe4 Rd l+, followed

Qe4 ! not only preventing this by attacking the rook on c2

17

18 I Typical mating combinations

B rtt•it•t •t •••• • .ft. • • m • • • • .4J. ftll
B
rtt•it•t •t
••••
.ft.
m
.4J.
ftll
BEtBftB
iJ
fl
��

Torre (black)

Adams (white)

The black queen is preventing a back-rank mate by Rxe8+ etc., so

White's first move is fai rly obvious, I Qg4! a so-called deflection sacri­

fice which clearly cannot be accepted, just as after 1

neither the rook nor the queen can capture the queen in view of the

Qd7 3 Qc7! Qb5 (if instead

Qa4 then 4 Re4 wins at once). We have now reached the critical

point of the combination. It appears that White can crown his tactics with the thematic 4 Qxb7 but the weakness of his own back rank could

Qxe2!! when it is Black who wins

after 5 Rxe2 Rc 1 + 6 Ne 1 Rxe 1 + etc. However, the win is still there; Adams continued. 4 a4! Qxa4 5 Re4! (the point of White's previous move, since he wins a tempo to remove his rook from the dangerous e2

square) 5

then be brilliantly exploited by 4

same back-rank mate. Play continues 2

Qb5 2 Qc4!

Qb5 and only now the deadly 6 Qxb7! when Black must

finally resign, because there is no way of saving his queen without

allowing a back-rank mate. I recommend the reader to study this com­ bination carefully, since it teaches us important tactical elements such

as deflection (moves 2, 3 and 6) compelling a black piece to give up its

defensive role, and decoy (move 4), luring Black's queen onto a square

where it can be attacked by the white rook with �ain of time.

18

onto a square where it can be attacked by the white rook with �ain of time.

Fridriksson (black)

Westyn (white)

Typical mating combinations I 19 Our next example is much simpler but just as effective.

Typical mating combinations I

19

Our next example is much simpler but just as effective. Black sacrifices

hb queen by

Bxe4+ etc or 2 Rxc2 Rd l+ 3 Rei Bxe4+ 4 Ka l Rxc l mate. Note that if White's pawn were on a3 instead of a2, play would be the same

except for the second line which would fmish 3 Ka2 b3 mate, a good example of a back-rank mate linked with a pawn on the sixth rank. Even world-class players are not immune to the danger of a back­ rank mate, as Cl\fl be seen in the following position.

the choice between 2 Kxc2

1

Qxc2+!!

giving White

19

the choice between 2 Kxc2 1 Qxc2+!! giving White 19 Eising (black) Polugayevsky (white) At Solingen

Eising (black)

Polugayevsky (white)

At Solingen in 1 974 Polugaevsky succumbed after 1 Qd7?? Qxg2 !! when he resigned in view of 2 Rxg2 Rb l+ etc., a clear case of the notorious 'chess blindness'.

The situation in our next diagram is more complicated, because

White has to reckon with a dangerous counter-attack.

1 Rd8? fails to 1 1 Qxg7 2 Rd8+
1
Rd8?
fails to
1
1
Qxg7 2 Rd8+

20

Ghitescu (black)

Batrina (white)

Bfl+! 2 Kxfl Rxb2+ when Black

For example,

Bg7 !! when

wins on the principle of 'first come, first served'. However, White has I

Qb8 2

mates next move, or if 1

20

I Typical mating combinations

BeS! with the double-attack on the queen (Bxb8) and the king (Qg7

mate). One tlueat is usually easy to meet, but two threats can cause real

rouble, as here, where 2

Bf2+? 2 Kfl ! (but not 2

Bxg2+ 3 Kxf2! Rxb2+ 4 Kgl winning,

because Black's bishop has now blocked the g2 square) 3 Kxf2 and

Kxf2? Rxb2+) Bb5+ (or 2

QxeS allows 3 Rd8 mate. For this reason,

after I Bg7!! Black tried the desperate 1

once again the black rook is frustrated by his own pieces (problemists

Qe2+ 4 KgJ Qxdl and

now comes the whole point of the combination : 5 Bh8 !! with a forced

mate, since 5

the game Black tried 5

Kxh8 (to prevent 6 Qg7 mate) allows 6 QfB mate. In

call it line-interference). Play continued 3

Qd6+ 6 Kf2 then resigned.

Another typical back-rank mate is seen in our next diagram.

21

typical back-rank mate is seen in our next diagram. 21 Composed position White wins by 1

Composed position

White wins by 1 Qxc6! Qxc6 2 Rd8+ BfB 3 Bh6 followed by mate on

fB, unless Black gives up a whole queen by 3

A similar mate with B and R, but this time with the rook on h1, is illustrated by a well-known trap in the Italian Game after the opening

moves 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 Bc5 4 d3 Nf6 S �? d6 6 BgS h6 7 Bh4? gS 8 BgJ h51 9 NxgS h41 10 Nxf7 hxg31 11 Nxd8 Bg4 12 Qd2 Nd4

Qcl +.

22

d6 6 BgS h6 7 Bh4? gS 8 BgJ h51 9 NxgS h41 10 Nxf7 hxg31
Variations of the Italian Game
Variations of the Italian Game

24

24 Typical mating combinations I 21 gxh2 mate) IS hxg3 Rhl mate. Note that if fr

Typical mating combinations I 21

gxh2 mate) IS hxg3

Rhl mate. Note that if fr om the diagram White tries 13 h3 Black

13 Nc3 Nf3+! 14 gxf3 Bxf3 (tlueatening

finishes neatly with 13

Ne2+ 14 Kh1 Rxh3+! 15 gxh3 Bf3 mate.

Here is a back·rank mate with R and 8 in the centre of the board,

taken from a game played in Sweden in 1974.

23

•• •• ·i·.l· § · . . ·�· • • •• •lll •• • •
••
••
·i·.l· § ·
.
.
·�·
••
•lll
••
m
ftHft•
a
.

Knutsson (black)

S. Andersson (white)

1 Qd 1 +! 2 Kxd1 Bg4++ (a double-check is highly effective because

the only way to escape it is by moving the king) 3 Ke 1 (or 3 Kc 1) 3 Rd 1 mate. Once the pattern of mate is part of our tactical equipment, we can freely sacrifice material to bring about the desired position, as in the following diagram.

about the desired position, as in the following diagram. Kusmin (black) Yutchov (white) By means of

Kusmin (black)

Yutchov (white)

By means of a sacrifice and exploitation of the pin of a pawn White achieves the R and 8 mate we have already seen: 1 Qxh7+!! Kxh7

22 I Typical mating combinations

22 I Typical mating combinations Ruy Lopez. After the moves I e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6

Ruy Lopez. After the moves I e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 Nf6 4 0-0

Nxe4 5 Rei Nd6 6 NxeS Be7 7 Bd3 NxeS B RxeS 0.0 9 Nc3 c6 10 b3 NeB I1 Bb2 dS 12 QhS Black must defend against the mate threat on

g6?? when the surprise move 13

NxdS !! leads after 13

Qxh7+! etc., or if 13

the obvious 15 RgS++ Kh6) Nf6 16 Rxh7 mate when this time it is a knight which is pinned. A so-called 'Epaulctte' mate is seen in the following situation: White

h7 by playing

cxd5 to the same fmish as above with 14

gxh5 14 Nxe7+ Kg7 15 RxhS+! (but not

h6 ! but not

12

B on f6, R on e7; Black R on dB, K on eB, R on f8. The black king is

hemmed in by his own pieces, so a single rook can mate him with the

pawn on f6 or d6 , or a

knight on fS , or a king on e6). The king can also be blocked on one side only, with two rooks combining to mate him on the seventh rank, as in the situation : White rooks on g7 and h7; Black R on fB, K on gB.

support of the bishop (or it could have been a

Here are two typical real examples from play.

25

have been a Here are two typical real examples from play. 25 Bogoljubow (black) A. N.

Bogoljubow (black)

A. N. Other (white)

It is a good time to ask ourselves how a player discovers a combination.

Clearly we in no way wish to decry the part played by originality and the creative imagination, but we are also helped a great deal by our knowledge of basic tactics and mating positions. In this situation, once White has seen that the two black rooks blocking the king make an 'Epaulette' mate possible, it is much easier for him to visualise the actual fmish of the game: 1 Rxb71 Qxe6 2 BcS!I Qxe2 3 Rxe7+ Qxe7 4 Rxe7 mate. (See next diagram) In this case, in order to achieve the required mate, White must first remove or deflect the two pieces guarding e7, giving us 1 QgB+ Rf8 2 Qg6+! ! Qxg6 3 Rexe7+ Kd8 4 Rbd7 mate.

·

28

26

27

••••• • [1 § . •••'i!Y •••• B rl B • • • • •
•••••
[1 §
. •••'i!Y
••••
B
rl
B
B
••
II
llftB
II
••-�···
·�·
• t
.t.B
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II
•t•
IJc£).
ijftg
ft . ft.
II
11\fl.
• IJ_ij�

Typical mating combinations I 23

Whitely (black)

Hartston (white)

Just (black)

Platz (white)

In our next position the mate is brought about by the two rooks operating along two files, after the splendid sacrifice of both queen and knight, by 1 Qxh7+!! Kxh7 2 Rhl+ Kg8 3 Nh6+ Kh7 4 Nf7+! Kg8 S Rh8+! ! Kxf7 6 Rh7+ Kg8 (note how Black is blocked in by four of his own men) 7 Rg7+ Kh8 8 Rh l mate . Opening lines onto the king by sacrifice o f material or luring the king to an open fLle, are typical ideas in mating combinations. Let us consider a few examples.

an open fLle, are typical ideas in mating combinations. Let us consider a few examples. Henneberger

Henneberger (black)

Gygli (white)

24 I Typical mating combinations

24 I Typical mating combinations Black wins by 1 mate . Again the answer to the

Black wins by 1

mate . Again the answer to the question of how we arrive at such a concept is given by the following standard position.

Ne2+ 2 Kh1 Qxg4 ! 3 hxg4 Rh5+! 4 gxh5 Rh4

position. Ne2+ 2 Kh1 Qxg4 ! 3 hxg4 Rh5+! 4 gxh5 Rh4 White wins by 1

White wins by 1 Ne7+ Kh8 2 Qxh7+! Kxh7 3 Rh3 mate. Once this idea is known, it becomes much easier to work out the individual application of it to a specific position. An open h file is once again the major fa ctor in White's original com­ bination leading fr om our next diagram.

30

original com­ bination leading fr om our next diagram. 3 0 Becker (block) --="-===-==---""=-=-'

Becker (block)

--="-===-==---""=-=-' Renman (white)

'Normal' continuations of the attack fail : e.g. if I Qxg6 NxdS, or 1 Be3 Rxc3 ! 2 bxc3 NxdS 3 RxdS Be6 etc. The only path to victory

Dxh8 2 Qxg6+!

Bg7 3

lies in the unusual move 1 Rh8+!! Kxh8 (if I

Qxf7+ Kh8 4 Rh1 + Nh7 5 Qg6 etc. wins) 2 Bxf7 and Black

resigned because he had no defence to the decisive attack down the

Nh5 3 Qxg6) 3 Rh 1 when White

he file, e. g.2

Nh7 (if 2

threatens both 4 Qxg6 and 4 Rxh7+ Kxh7 5 Qxg6+ Kh8 6 Qh5+

Bh6 7 Qxh6 mate.

·

31

31 Typical mating comblnations I 25 Carlsson (black) Westin (white) White's king is already situated on

Typical mating comblnations I 25

Carlsson (black)

Westin (white)

White's king is already situated on an open me, but Black cannot

. Rh6, since the white king can

escape to g2. For this reason the rook is needed on g7, so it is the other

rook which must use the h fi le. But how? Black solves the problem by

the startling but logical I

Kf7 !! allowing the dreaded knight fork of

king and queen. However, after 2 Nxd6+ Ke7 3 QxbS Nf4+! White

realgned because it is mate next move.

exploit

this by the immediate 1

.

.

32

Schlechter (black)
Schlechter (black)

This time the h me is not used directly for mate but allows a rook, in conjunction with a knight, to achieve a typical mating finish as follows:

1 Qxh7+!! Kxh7 2 RhS+ Kg8 3 Ng6 ! Rf6 4 Rh8+ Kf7 5 Rf8 mate . There are many combinations based on a mate by the queen on h7 or g7 (h2, g2). (See next diagram) Every beginner knows the mate brought about by a queen on h7 supported by a knight on gS , but in this position not only does the knight on f6 defend h7 but also White's knight on gS is under attack from the pawn. However, I NdS ! settles matters at once, since

34

26

I Typical mating combinations

33

33

Schwarz (black)

Uhlmann (white)

1

exd5 loses to 2 Bxf6 Qxf6 3 Qh7 mate. Black tried the hope­

less 1

hxg5 2 Nxe7+

Nxe7 and then resigned.

hope­ less 1 hxg5 2 Nxe7+ Nxe7 and then resigned. Composed position All good players kn

Composed position

All good players kn ow off by heart the following basic manoeuvre :

1 Qh6! Rxe1 2 Bxh7+ (not of course 2 Qxh7+?? when the king

Kh8 3 Bg6+! Kg8 4 Qh7+ KfB 5 Qxf7 mate.

Oearly this mate can appear in various guises and usually forms the

routine conclusion to a more complex piece of tactics. Take for example our next position.

(See next diagram) White played 1 Re6 ! threatening 2 Rxh6+ gxh6

fxe6 2

Qg6 and mate on h7) but after 1

to resign in view of 3

and 5 Bg6+ followed by 6 Qh7 mate. Often when the queen mates on h7 it is supported by pawn on g6 as in our next diagram.

Kg8 2 Bh7+ Kh8 3 Rxh6! he had

gxh6 4 Qxh6 tlueatening both 5 QxfB mate

3 Qxh6+ Kg8 4 Qh7 mate. Black cannot take the rook (I

escapes to e7) 2

37

JS

36

37 JS 36 Typical mating combinations I 27 Mjagmarsuren (black) White must act quickly before Black

Typical mating combinations I 27

Mjagmarsuren (black)

JS 36 Typical mating combinations I 27 Mjagmarsuren (black) White must act quickly before Black mates

White must act quickly before Black mates him, so he carries out a well-known clearance idea to make way for the powerful queen to reach h7: 1 Rh8+! Kxh8 2 Rh l+ Kg8 3 Rh8+ ! Kxh8 4 Qtil+ Kg8 S Qh7 mate. When the queen mates on g7, it is often su pported by a pawn on f6 u in the following typical finish.

S Qh7 mate. When the queen mates on g7, it is often su p ported by

28 I Typical mating combinations

I

Qh3 2 Qfl (or 2 Qxf3 Rei mate) ReI! and since 3 Qxel allows

3

Qg2 mate, White must try 3 Rd8+ Kf7 4 Rd7+ Kg6! (of course,

the king dare not move onto the e file because Qxel would then be check !) 5 Rd6+ Kh5! winning. We see a more complicated example of the same basic idea in our next position.

38

example of the same basic idea in our next position. 38 Gangijew (black) Sacharov (white) White

Gangijew (black)

Sacharov (white)

White first removes one possible protector of g7 by 1 Nxb5 ! so that if

I Nxb5 2 Qh6 Qf8 3 Ra8 leads to a similar fmish to the one above.

g5 only to fmd that White has

catered fo r this by the pretty idea 2 Qxe5! dxe5 3 Nxc7 when Black

resigned, because 3

or if 3

3 Qxf6 4 Ra8+ Kg7 5 Ne8+ wins the queen for the knight, ending

a whole rook up. In the following position White uses his advanced queen to threaten

Qxc7 allows a back-rank mate by 4 Ra8+ etc.,

h6 4 Ra8 Qxa8 5 Nxa8 White is a piece up, or finally if

For this reason Black replies 1

mates on both g7 and h7, linking this with another common and im­ portant idea.

1 mates on both g7 and h7, linking this with another common and im­ portant idea.

Hardicsay (black)

1 mates on both g7 and h7, linking this with another common and im­ portant idea.

Pinter (white)

Typical mating combinations I 29 I NbS! lhreatens 2 NgS when Black will be mated

Typical mating combinations I 29

I NbS! lhreatens 2 NgS when Black will be mated on g7 or h7. If I

BeS 2 NxeS follows, and if I mate. So Black played 1

QxhS+ Kg7 S QgS+ Resigns. The point is that after S

lw 6 Rf3 then 7 Rh3 mate. The same final idea is seen in simple fo rm in the next position.

Bh8 2 NgS Nf6 3 Nxf6+ and 4 Qh7 gxhS 2 NgS! BxgS 3 QxgS+ Kh7 4

Kh7 White

40

• • • B a. d - - ll i rlit. • t . .
• •
B
a.
d
-
-
ll i rlit.
• t
.
.
B.4JB
ftO.ftll
HftO
�Er

Composed position

1

Anolher common rnating attack occurs after a piece sacrifice on h7, a theme which is illustrated in our next two positions.

Bxg2! 2 Kxg2 Qg4 + 3 K.h1 QD + 4 Kg 1 Rf6 etc.

positions. Bxg2! 2 Kxg2 Qg4 + 3 K.h1 QD + 4 Kg 1 Rf6 etc. (See

(See also next diagram) The solution is

the

same in both cases: 1

Bxh7+!

Kg6 , in the fi rst case

White wins by 3 Qg4 or 3 Qd3+, and in the second case by 3 h5+.

Note that in diagram 42 the g5 square is guarded by the black bishop

on e7 but after 2

move . Beginners often imitate this combination without really making

Kg8 3 Qh5 and Black can only prevent the

mate by a great loss of material . If here 2

Kxh7 2 NgS +

Bxg5 3 hxg5+ Kg8 4 Qh5 fS 5 g6 it is mate next

30 I Typical mating combinations

30 I Typical mating combinations a proper examination of all the consequences, in particular the possi­

a proper examination of all the consequences, in particular the possi­

Kg8 3 Qh5 the situ­

ation is not always clear because of a possible flight square on f8 when

Black's rook moves

bility of the king flight to g6, but even after 2

away . Consider for example the following position:

43

• ••••• •t•_t_• t•t ·�·t· • • • • • •t n-'t• • • II
• •••••
•t•_t_• t•t
·�·t·
•t n-'t•
II
·�·
ftll
B
HftB
IJ'it��
w

Horn (black)

Fincke (white)

Here White wrongly carried out the routine sacrifice and lost after 1 Bxh7+? Kxh7 2 Ng5+ Kg6 ! 3 h4 Rh8 4 Qf3 Raf8 5 hS+ Rxh5 6

Nxf7 Rf5 ! (more precise than 6

8 Qg3 + Kf7 9 dxe5 Bxe5 etc. If instead White had played 3 Qg4 , the 'normal' move, 3

would have beaten off the attack. This possibility must always be taken into account ; in fact as a general rule (which of course does not always apply) one might say that one of the most important prerequisites of this sacrifice is that a white pawn on e5 is available for capturing Black's f pawn en passant. (See next diagram) Tills is a well-known position arising from a vari­ ation of the French Defence after I e4 e6 2 d4 d5 3 Nc3 dxe4 4 Nxe4 Nd7 5 Nf3 Be7 6 Bd3 Ngf6 7 Nxf6+ Bxf6 8 Qe2 0-0 9 h4 !? White

Rxf7 7 Qg4+) 7 Ne5+ Nxe5

fS !

44

. . · t ·�·t•t • .til • • • • • • B •
.
.
· t ·�·t•t
.til
B
II
• fJ.Q.B{).
ftllftri*Bft.
D.
11
·�

Typical mating combinations I 31

Variation of French Defence

now threatens 10 Bxh7+! winning, so it seems that Black is forced to

make a weakening defensive move such as

will castle long and launch a K side attack by using his g and h pawns to open the necessary fl.les.

eS! and after

10 Bxh7+!? Kxh7 ! II NgS + Kg8 12 QhS ReS 13 Qxf7+ Kh8 we have a Nrprising situation in which White has no more than a draw by repetition of moves (13 QhS+ Kg8 14 Qfl+, or 13 Qg6 Kg8 14 Qf7+)

which he would be wise to take, because Black is threatening a counter­

attack by

NeS if White tries to exploit the

insecure position of the black king. This variation illustrates the impor­

tant strategic principle that a wing attack is often best countered by a

central thrust (here, 9 h4!? being answered by 9

There are, of course, many variations of the basic sacrifice on h7, but we shall restrict ourselves to one example of an original fmish.

h6 or

g6, when White

However, Black can instead equalise by playing 9

exd4+ fo llowed by

eS!).

can instead equalise by playing 9 exd4+ fo llowed by eS!). Grzelak (black) Pinkas (white) In

Grzelak (black)

Pinkas (white)

In this position Black controls gS , but the fa ct that White has the open f me available to his rooks enables him to launch a highly interesting

32 I Typical mating combinations

32 I Typical mating combinations attack beginning 1 Bxh7+! Kxh7 2 Ng5+ Bxg5 {2 Bxg5 4

attack beginning 1 Bxh7+! Kxh7 2 Ng5+ Bxg5 {2

Bxg5 4 Bxg5 transposes to a position we shall be examining later) 3 Qh5+ Bh6? (it is understandable that Black would like to remain two

pieces up, but if he had realised the strength of White's next move he

would have played 3

gxf6 5 Qxh6+ Kg8 6 exf6

followed by mate on g7) 4

White again sacrifices with 5 Rxh6! gxh6 6 Bxh6 Qb6 7 Rf1 ! and the

Qg6 8 Qxg6+ fxg6

9 Rxf8+ Kh7 10 Rxc8 Kxh6 when 11 e6! wins for White because this pawn cannot be stopped in view of the pinned knight. 1bis is a typical situation where the mating attack has been warded off at the

Kg8

Kg8 which we shall consider later) 4 Rf6!!

(surprising and decisive, since if now 4

Kg8 3 Qh5

Nd7 (After the alternative 4

threat of 8 Rf6 followed by 9 Qg5+ forces 7

cost of material or positional disadvantage.) 5 Rxh6+! gxh6 6 Bxh6 !

Qe8 (or 6

winning) 7 Bg5+! Kg8 8 Bf6 Nxf6 9 Qg5 + Kh8 10 exf6 and Black

resigned since it is mate next move (10

Now let us return to the position after the moves 1 Bxh7+ Kxh7

f6 7 Bxf8+ Kg8 8 Qg6 +! Kxf8 9 exf6 Nxf6 10 Rfl

Rg8 11 Qh6 mate).

2 Ng5+ Bxg5 3 Qh5+ and consider the better defence 3 Bxg5 Qb6 when White can pursue the attack in two ways:

(1) 5 Bf6 c4+ 6 Kh1 Qe3 ! 7 RD Qh6 8 Qxh6 gxh6 9 Rg3+ Kh7 10 Rg7+ Kh8 11 Rfl ! and Black has no defence to the threat of Rf4

Kg8 4

11 Rfl ! and Black has no defence to the threat of Rf4 Kg8 4 and
11 Rfl ! and Black has no defence to the threat of Rf4 Kg8 4 and

and Rh4 followed by mate, since 11

Kg8 13 Rg7+ Kh8 14 Rxd7+ Rxf6 15 Rd8+! an important zwlschenzug (interposed), winning material.

Nd7 fails to 12 Rxf7+

(2)

5 Rf6 also gives White a tremendous attack, since 5

to 6 Bxf6 followed by mate, and 6

gxf6 fails

Be6 7 Bh6! wins quickly.

46

by mate, and 6 gxf6 fails Be6 7 Bh6! wins quickly. 46 Plater (black) Pachman (white)

Plater (black)

Pachman (white)

Sacrifices on g7 are also very common. In this positiqn Black can defend against normal attacks on g7 e.g. 1 Bh6 Nh5 2 Qg4 g6 etc. or 1

Typical mating combinations I 33

Bxf6 Dxf6 or 1 Nxe7+ Qxe7 , but after 1 Nxg7! Kxg7 2 e5! (the point,

dxe5 3 Bf4+

KfB? 4 Bh6 mate) 4 Bxe5 Qb7 S Qh4! Nd7 6 Rxd7! Qxd7 7

Ne4 QfS 8 Nxf6 BcS+ 9 Kh1 RxeS 10 RxeS White won. The king's side II amashed up in spectacular fashion by the famous two bishops' sacri· 8ce in which both the h7 and g7 pawns are eliminated to expose the eoemy king, as can be seen in the composed position which follows.

Kh8 (3

Iince an inunediate discovered check is ineffective) 2

47

Iince an inunediate discovered check is ineffective) 2 47 Composed position Bxh2+! 2 Kxh2 Qh4+ 3

Composed position

Bxh2+! 2 Kxh2 Qh4+ 3 Kg 1 Black produces Bxg2! 4 Kxg2 (it is vitally important to examine the consequences if White refuses the

Rf6 !

with a winning attack) 4

QgS+ S Kh 1 Rf6 ! (without the vital entry

second sacri fice . In this case, after 4 f3 or 4 f4 Black has 4

1

of this rook Black's attack would fail, whereas now there is no defence) 6 Nf3 Rh6+ 7 Nh2 Qh4 8 Kg2 Qxh2+ 9 Kf3 QhS+ 10 Kf4 (or 10 Kg2

Rg6+) 10

Now let us see how this knowledge is utilised in practical play by a talented player who tragically died just before the end of the Second

World War.

Qh4+ 11 KeS ReS+ 12 KdS Qe7 and mate next move.

48

• • ••• ltt.•'lfl i.i • Fli. • · i� • B. ft B'IB B
•••
ltt.•'lfl
i.i
Fli.
· i�
B. ft B'IB
B
B.ft�
II
ftll
-�· ftll
.
-��

Kottnauer (black)

Junge (white)

34 I Typical mating combinations

The apparently closed nature of the position is deceptive, for in the space of three moves White brings about by force the desired situation. I NbS ! Qb8 2 Nxd7 Rxd7 3 dxcS Nxc5 (essential if he is not to lose a

pawn, since 3

unguarded rook on d7), and now the 'standard' set-up is reached. Play

Kxg7 7

Qg4+

Qh8+ Kf7 9 Qg7 mate, Black had to give up his queen which only postponed the inevitable. We have already seen the enemy king being driven up the board and mated, once he is deprived of his pawn protection, and to achieve iliis result no sacrifice is too great. Take the following classical example.

Qe8 allows 8

continued 4 Bxh7+ Kxh7 5 Qh5+ Kg8 6 Bxg7 f5 (after 6

bxcS? 4 Bxe4 wins a piece for White because of the

Kh7 8

Rf3

it is

all

over) 7 Be5 ! and since 7

because of the Kh7 8 Rf3 it is all over) 7 Be5 ! and since 7

Thomas (black)

Lasker (white)

White visualises the possibility of a successful 'king hunt' as it is termed,

Kh8 3 Ng6 mate) 3 Neg4+

Kg5 4 h4+ Kf4 5 g3 + Kf3 6 8e2+ Kg2 7 Rh2+ Kgl 8 0-0-0 mate! A perfect conclusion to a king hunt.

so I Qxh7+!! Kxh7 2 Nxf6++ Kh6 (or 2

50

A perfect conclusion to a king hunt. so I Qxh7+!! Kxh7 2 Nxf6++ Kh6 (or 2

Skotarenko (black)

A perfect conclusion to a king hunt. so I Qxh7+!! Kxh7 2 Nxf6++ Kh6 (or 2

Selinsky (white)

Typical mating combinations f 35 11lis is a similar example of massive sacrifices to lure

Typical mating combinations f 35

11lis is a similar example of massive sacrifices to lure the king up the board, but the tactical calculation is much more demanding as will be teen : I Nxg6! Kxg6 2 Nxf5! Rxf5 3 Qxf5+! ! Kxf5 4 Be4+ Kg4 5 h3 + giving us three variations:

(1) 5

Kh5 6 g4+ Kh4 7 Re3 and 8 Be l mate . Kxh3 6 Bf5+ Kxg3 7 Re3 + Kh4 8 Be I+ Kh5 9 Rh 3+ Qh4 10 Rxh4 mate.

(2) 5

(3) the game continuation, 5

Kxg3 6 Re3 + Kh4 7 Bg6 !! and Rlack

resigned because he cannot even stop mate by returning material e.g. Qg5+ 8 fxg5 Bxe5 9 Re4+ Kxh3 10 Bf5+ Kg3 II Bel mate.

7

8 fxg5 Bxe5 9 Re4+ Kxh3 10 Bf5+ Kg3 II Bel mate. 7 Frankie (black) P

Frankie (black)

Patty (white)

f6 he

can set up a solid defensive position. So White must play energetically to prevent this by 1 N xh6 ! gxh6 2 Rxf7+ Kd6 3 Qh5 ! Bd7- (to create a

flight square on c7) 4 Qxe5 +!! KxeS S Bf4 m�te.

Black's king is already exposed, but if he is given time to play

king is already exposed, but if he is given time to play Tatai (black) Rorrun (white)

Tatai (black)

Rorrun (white)

White has a difficult decision to make in this position, because after the first part of the combination which is relatively easy to see, he has to

36

I Typical mating combinations

evaluate a new situation where Black has given back all the sacrificed . material and assess whether or not he has sufficient resources to achieve a win. 1 Qxh6+!! Kxh6 2 Nxf5+! KgS (Black cannot accept the second

sacrifice in view of 2

here 3

(probably the best practical chance lay in 3

gxf4+ Kxf4 6 Kf2 NfS 7 Ne8! Rg8 8 Rag1 Rgxe8 9 Bxe8 Rxe8 10 Rh3 Nxd4 11 cxd4 Nxd4 12 Rh4+ KxeS 13 Rel+ and the other knight is lost) 4 Nxc8 Rxc8 5 f4 + Nxf4+ 6 gxf4+ Kxf4+ 7 Kf2 RegS 8 Bf3. Black is now positionally lost because his e pawn is weak and White's

NxfS? 3 Bf7+ KgS 4 f4 + Kg4 5 BhS mate, or

f3 mate) 3 Nd6. Ng6 Qf8 4 f4 + Qxf4 5

Nh4 4 Rxh4+ KgS 5 Rh5+ Kg4 6

rook on the h ftle becomes very active along the sixth or seventh rank.

Nd8 9 Rh6 Rg6 10 Rah1 Rxh6 11 Rxh6 Rf8 (or

Rg6 12 Rh8! etc.) 12 Rg6 ! KfS 13 Rg7 aS? (it was essential to play Kf4 but White still wins by 14 Rg4 + KfS 15 Ke3 ! Nf7 16 Rf4 +

The game ended 8

13

KgS 17 Rf6 etc.) 14 Ke3 Resigns. 15 Bg4 mate comes next.

53

Karl (black)
Karl (black)

White has already sacrificed two pieces to reach this position and he must give up more material to expose Black's king before he can con­

solidate. 1 RxeS ! KxeS 2 Qf7! (the real point of the sacrifice, prevent­

Qxd2 3 Be l!

�g the king's retreat to f6 and threatening d4+) 2

Black must now give up his queen to stop Bxf4+, but although he obtains more than adequate material compensation with a rook and

two minor pieces for it, his king is far too exposed to survive for long.

Qxc1 4 Rxc l Nc6 5 Re l+ Be4 6 Qxg7+ KdS 7

The game ended 3

Qf7+ KcS 8 Rxe4 Rac8 9 Qc4+ Kb6 10 Qb3+ Ka6 11 Ra4+ Resigns.

(I I

mate.) (See next diagram) On looking at this position, one is first inclined to echo Najdorrs fam ous dictum that 'both players stand badly', but

NaS 12 Qc4+ bS 13 Qc6 mate, or here 12

Kb6 13 Rb4

54

54 Typical mating combinations I 31 Pachman (black) Fuderer (white) Black has a chance to carry

Typical mating combinations I 31

Pachman (black)

Fuderer (white)

Black has a chance to carry out a long-winded king hunt which is not

too difficult to work out . I

3 Kg3 Qxg4+ 4 Kf2 (after 4 Kh2 Qh3+ 5 Kg1 Qg3+ White is mated by

6 Khl Be4 or 6 Kfl Bd3) 4

Bt1 + 9 Kf4

Qf4+ 5 Kg2 Be4+ 6 Kh3 Qt1 + 7 Kh4

Rg4+! 2 fxg4 (2 KxfS Qe6 mate) Qe4+

Qf2+ 8 Kg4 (or 8 Kg5 Qg3+ fo llowed by mate) 8

Be2+! 10 KgS (10 Ke4 Qf3 mate) 10 Qg3+ II Resigns. ss Bednarski (black) Kavalek
Be2+! 10 KgS (10 Ke4 Qf3 mate) 10
Qg3+ II Resigns.
ss
Bednarski (black)
Kavalek (white)

Following White's thought sequence, we can see that there is no effective way of increasing the pressure on g7, so play must be switched to the h7 square . We already know the mating set-up with White's queen on h7 and knight on gS , but how can we achieve this with gS blocked and anyway guarded by the bishop on d8? Once an idea is found, other elements are brought in to complete the combination as follows: I g6 ! hxg6 2 Rxd8! (removing both obstacles to the occupation of the gS

square) 2

Qf6 4 Qg3 gaining time) 4

Qe4! Resigns. (See next diagram) Everything is decided by a single move , the two key factors being the overloading of the bishop on g7 (guarding both h6 and

Rxd8 3 NgS QfB (or 3

38 I Typical mating combinations

56

• • • • • • • • •• . . ·�· li ft. ·�·
• •
••
.
.
·�·
li ft.
·�·
•*•
. ftll
ft l:l<it>.
.
• • . ftll ft l:l<it>. • • • . .§ Adorjan (black) Smeljkal (white) the

Adorjan (black)

Smeljkal (white)

the queen) and the open h ftle. After 1 Rxh6 +!

resign, as 1 queen.

Black was forced to Bxh6 loses the

Kxh6 allows 2 Qh4 mate, whereas 1

Posner (black)
Posner (black)

Once again a fairly simple idea leads to a quick win. White sacrifices a rook in order to penetrate to f7 with his queen and it is all over. 1

Kh6 3 fS + and mate next move) 3

Bc3 Ra6 (Black must give up his queen to avoid mate) 4 Bxf6+ Qxf6 5 Qxf6+ Kh7 6 Qe7+ Kh8 7 g3 Resigns. White is not only up on material but will soon be able to advance his e pawn. (See next diagram) White here brings about a mate which is rarely seen in practical play: 1 QxeS ! QxeS 2 Rd8+ Ke7 3 ReS mate. Problernists will recognise this as a so-ca11ed 'pure' mate (or 'model' mate), since all the white pieces take part in the mate with no square being controlled more than once.

Rh7+! Kxh7 2 Qf7+ Kh8 (2

58
58

Typical mating combinations I 39

Thornblom (black)

Friedman (white)

Achmedov (black)

Radulov (white)

White's position, with all pieces ready for action, is in stark contrast to Black's undeveloped game. Uttle wonder that there is a sacrificial finish

at hand, as follows: 1 Bb6 ! axb6 2 Rxe6+! Ne7 (or 2

fxe6 3 Bxg6 +

followed by mate) 3 Qxf7 + Kd8 4 Qe8 +!!· (there are many roads to victory, but White chooses the shortest and most elegant) and Black

resigned in view of the 'pin-mate' 4

Kxe8 5 Bxg6 mate.

most elegant) and Black resigned in view of the 'pin-mate' 4 Kxe8 5 Bxg6 mate. Heinrich

Heinrich (black)

Kaplan (white)

40 I Typical mating combinations

At first sight it looks as if any discovered check by the rook on f7 would be successful, but in view of the fact that both the rook and bishop are under attack the logical solution must lie in a double-check. So 1 Rf8++! Kxf8 2 Ng6+ hxg6 3 Qh8 mate is the answer.

61

So 1 Rf8++! Kxf8 2 Ng6+ hxg6 3 Qh8 mate is the answer. 61 Schiljejev (black)

Schiljejev (black)

Mirsajev (white)

Clearly an attack down the h me is called for, but the 'evolutionary' method of I Qh2 h5 2 Rdgl Qf3 ! seems rather slow. The 'revolutionary'

Kxh7 allows White to gain

1 Rxh7 ! is much more successful, since 1

time by 2 Qh2+ Kg8 3 Rhl etc. Black replied I

Bxf6 3 gxf6 Nxf6 but now White finished neatly with 4 Rh8+ Kg? 5

Bh6+! Kxh8 . 6 Bg7 +! forcing mate in two moves.

Qxg3 2 Rdh1

62

. 6 Bg7 +! forcing mate in two moves. Qxg3 2 Rdh1 6 2 Sanz (black)

Sanz (black)

Medina (white)

Tineatened with mate in one, White has a clear incentive to fmd the

gxfS 2 Qxf6+ and 3 QgS mate)

2 Qxh7+! Nxh7 3 g4 mate.

(See next diagram) TI1e back-rank weakness again comes into play after

winning sequence : I Nf5+! Kh5 (1

1 Rxf7! Rxf7 (the tempting 1

Qxf8 4 Bxe6+ mating) 2 Dxe6! Resigns. A good example of overloading

Rd8 fails to 2 Rxd8+ Q�d8 3 Rf8+!

63

6 3 Typical mating combinations I 41 Gutkin (black) Thelidse (white) al o n g with

Typical mating combinations I 41

Gutkin (black)

Thelidse (white)

along with the usual deflection, since 2 mate in two moves.

Qxe6 allows 3 Rd8+ and

64

Carlsson (black)
Carlsson (black)

White cleverly exploits tluee basic mating patterns in the sequence I

Nf6+ Kh8 2 QgS !! with mates after 2

3 Rh3, or fmally 2

hxgS

gxf6 3

Qg8, or 2

Bxd3 3 Qxh6+ gxh6 4 Rg8.

Our next two examples are two sides of the same coin.

65

2 Bxd3 3 Qxh6+ gxh6 4 Rg8. Our next two examples are two sides of the

Antosh.in (black)

Forintos (white)

42 I Typical mating combinations

42 I Typical mating combinations We first have a typical king hunt offering few problems and

We first have a typical king hunt offering few problems and ending

successfully for Black: 1

hS+! 4 KgS RxeS+! S Kh6 (or S fxeS QxeS+ 6 Kh6 Qf4 mate) Re6! 6 Rxb7 gS+ 7 Resigns. All very clear and simple, but we must warn the reader that it is vital to calculate the fmish precisely, since it is often the case that an ad­ vanced enemy king which is not immediately mated can prove a serious embarrassment to our own king. Witness the following tragi-comedy.

S

3

Qg1 + 2 Kg3 Qe1 +! 3 Kg4 (3 Kf3 Qf2+)

66

. . •it. • .t • .t. • • • •• ••• o B g
.
.
•it. •
.t
.t.
••
•••
o
B
g
II
II
ft.
II
.
·�·

Darga (black)

Filip (white)

Black, a pa�n and the exchange down, should probably have resigned already, but on the other hand optimists claim that no game was ever

won by resigning! Play went : 1

)

2

whereas White could still have brought his king hunt to a successful conclusion by S g4+! KeS 6 ReS+ Kd6 7 Qf8+ Kd7 8 Qfi+ Kd8 9

preventing 2

Bb7 3 Rc7+ Kg6 4 Qg8+ KfS S Qxh7+?? (the losing move,

QO ! 2 Rcl (much simpler is 2 Rbl

Bb7 because of 3 Qc7+, but White opts for mate

Qc7+ Ke8 10 Qb8+ followed by 11 Rc7+ and this time round the king

is really mated !) S

after both 5 Qg6+ and 6 Rxb7 Black plays 6 mate on g2.

Kh3 followed by

Kg4 ! and White realised he had to resign, because

Ch apter 3

The elements of chess tactics

As we have already seen in the previous chapter, within even the most complex combination certain basic recurring fe atures eme rge which we can identify as the elements of chess tactics. The most important of these are: the double-attack, the fork, deflection, decoy, the pin, discovered check, double check, perpetual check, stalemate, trapping a piece, piece elimination, unprotected pieces, line-opening, line<losure, and the passed pawn. It may all appear highly complicated and comprehensive, but the game of chess is even more so, if we consider the infmite number of pos­

lible permutations ! However, once readers have grasped the basic tactical

clements, they will be able to fmd their way much more confidently in

the combinative maze and gain invaluable aids in decision-making.

1. The double-attack

Since both sides begin the game with th e. same material, it .is usually

fairly easy to defend against a single threat. Matters become more

difficult if we can create various threats at one and the same time, and

in particular with one move only, by means of a double-attack. We see

the mechanism clearly in the following position.

67

by means of a double-attack. We see the mechanism clearly in the following position. 67 Wolf

Wolf (black)

Jahner (white)

44 I The elements of chess tactics

44 I The elements of chess tactics Black wins a pawn by 1 Qg5 threatening both

Black wins a pawn by 1

Qg5 threatening both mate on g2 and the rook on c 1. There is no way

of countering both threats at the same time.

Rxd4! since 2 Rxd4 is answered by 2

68

at the same time. Rxd4! since 2 Rxd4 is answered by 2 68 Pachman (black) Elson

Pachman (black)

Elson (white)

A much more complex position with the double-attack idea linked to other subtle points. Black has already sacrificed a piece and now con­

Rxa4! 2 Rxa4 Qd7

cludes the game with a fine combination : 1

attacking both the rook on a4 and the pawn on h3 . Since the latter

leads to mate, White is forced to give up the rook, so tries the counter

3 Rh4 guarding his h3 pawn whilst attacking the knight. However,

Qxa4 when it is clear that

4 Rxh5? loses to 4

Black has · catered for this and plays 3

Rg8+ 5 Ng3 (5 Kh2 Rg2+ 6 Kh 1 Qd 1 forces

mate) 5

Rxg3+! 6 fxg3 Qd1+ 7 Kf2 Qe2+ followed by 8

Qg2 mate. For this reason, White settled for the loss of a pawn, but

after 4 Qd3 ! Nf6 5 Qf3 Qxb4 his position was lost. There are many opening traps involving a double-attack. Here is one from the Queen's Indian Defence: 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 b6 4 g3 Bb7

5 Bg2 Bb4+ 6 Bd2 Bxd2+ 7 Qxd2 0-0 8 Nc3 Ne4(?) 9 Qc2 Nx ' c3? 10

Ng5 ! and now, in view of the dual threat of Qxh7 mate and Bxb7,

Black was forced to play 10 Bxb7 and 12 Bxa8.

QxgS losing the exchange after 11

2. The fo rk

lbis is really the special form of double-attack when a piece attacks two other pieces simultaneously, being particularly applied to the knigh t fork which is such a typical part of opening play e.g. 1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nf6 5 Nc3 e6 6 Ndb5 d5? 7 exd5 exd5 8 Nxd5 ! Nxd5 9 Qxd5 ! QxdS 10 Nc7+ and 11 NxdS winning a pawn.

3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nf6 5 Nc3 e6 6 Ndb5 d5? 7 exd5 exd5 8

69

69 The elements of chess tactics I 45 This knight check on c7 (or c2) is

The elements of chess tactics I 45

This knight check on c7 (or c2) is usually played to win the rook on aS (at). Now for a few examples to show what a useful tactical weapon this knight fork is.

to show what a useful tactical weapon this knight fork is. Stein (black) Lj ubojevic (white)

Stein (black)

Lj ubojevic (white)

After the first knight fo rk 1

exchange by 2 0-0, because 2 Kxf2? fails to 2

way White recaptures, the second fork 3

Nxf2! White had to settle for losing the

Bxc3 and whichever

Ne4+ wins the queen.

for losing the Bxc3 and whichever Ne4+ wins the queen. Rukavina (black) Tinunan (white) White's king

Rukavina (black)

Tinunan (white)

White's king is cut off in the centre, a disadvantage we shall be discussing later, and yet one's first impression is that Black cannot exploit this fact, mainly because the centralised knight on d4 looks so strong, as

does the passed pawn on c6. However, after 1

matters are put into perspective. White's queen has no move , and 3 Qxd3 fails to the knight fork 3 0 •• Nxf2+. (See next diagram) By 1 Qe4? I made a mistake which since that time (1949) has been repeated many times. The result was the loss of a vital

0 Qb4+ 2 Kd 1 Bd3 !

46

I The elements of chess tactics

71

46 I The elements of chess tactics 71 Rossolimo (black) Pachman (white) pawn along with a

Rossolimo (black)

Pachman (white)

pawn along with a transposition to the end-game after 1

bxc3 Qd1 +! 3 Kxd1 Nxf2+ followed by 4

Nxe4.

72

after 1 bxc3 Qd1 +! 3 Kxd1 Nxf2+ followed by 4 Nxe4. 72 Alburt (black) Vasyukov

Alburt (black)

Vasyukov (white)

Bxc3+ 2

White's first move 1 Nd6! gives him a positional plus, but is hardly

decisive if Black replies 1

Qxd6? only to discover th-at he

loses at once to 2 Qxf7+ Kh8 3 Qxe8+! Rxe8 4 Nf7+ Kg8 5 Nxd6 cxd6 6 BxdS etc.

he could have more and played 1

cxd6 2 QxdS etc. However, Black thought

73

Biljinski (black)
Biljinski (black)

74

The elements of chess tactics I 47

White's g pawn has just fo rked Black's queen and knight, but by using a counter-fork Black turns the tables on his opponent as follows: 1 Rxd41 2 gxf4 (or 2 cxd4 Qxd2! 3 Qxd2 NfJ + etc.) Rxd2! 3 Qxd2 (White must give back the queen or else he is mated after 3 Qb3 Bxf2+

4 K.h2 Bxel+ etc.) 3

pieces for a rook. The game ended 5 Kg3 BfJ ! 6 Be 1 h4+ 7 K.h2 Nxe4 8 Be3 Nxf2 ! 9 Resigns (if 9 Bxb6 cxb6 10 Rfl Ng4+ 11 Kh3 Be2 12 Rfe 1 Nf2+ 13 Kg4 Nd3 ! ·14 Rxe2 Nxf4+ with yet another fork). The very threat of a knight fork can be used to strengthen one's position, even if the threat is never carried out. Take the next position.

NfJ + 4 Kg2 Nxd2 winning two minor

Take the next position. NfJ + 4 Kg2 Nxd2 winning two minor Basman (black) Miles (white)

Basman (black)

Miles (white)

4 Kg2 Nxd2 winning two minor Basman (black) Miles (white) White's two minor pieces are under

White's two minor pieces are under attack from the quee n, and if I Bxd6+ Rxd6 2 Rxd6 Qxe7 he loses material. As it turns out, this

knight is such a good piece that White can afford to sacrifice his bishop in order to maintain it on e7 where it plays a splendid role as follows:

I Rfe l ! Qxf4 2 Rd4! QgS (immediately the knight makes its presence felt, as the rook cannot be captured because of Nc6+ and thus gain s time to help in the attack) 3 Rc4 ! and Black had to resign, since he is

Rd7 then 4

ReB+ mates. Although the knight is the main exponent of the fork, other pieces can of course be used. We now give examples of forks by bishop, rook, queen and pawn.

Rxh2+! Black removes the guard of g3

(See next diagram) By 1

threatened by 4 Nc6+ followed by S Qxa7+ and if 3

whilst at the same time luring White's king into the fa tal fo rk as follows: 2 Kxh2 Bxg3 + 3 Qxg3 hxg3+ winning easily.

77

48 I The elements of chess tactics

75

76

77 48 I The elements of chess tactics 75 76 Geller (black) Kotov (white) Evans (black)
77 48 I The elements of chess tactics 75 76 Geller (black) Kotov (white) Evans (black)

Geller (black)

Kotov (white)

Evans (black)

Schmid (white)

'

By the temporary sacrifice of a piece followed by a rook fork mack

reaches a winning end-game : 1

Bxc3 ! 2 bxc3 Rxc3 + 3 Kd2 Rxb3 etc.

end-game : 1 Bxc3 ! 2 bxc3 Rxc3 + 3 Kd2 Rxb3 etc. Grunfeld (black) Alekhine

Grunfeld (black)

Alekhine (white)

The queen's combined horizontal, vertical and diagonal movements give her many opportunities for this special form of double attack. Here is a

famous example : 1

Qc4! (attacking both the queen on e2 and the

The elements of chess tactics I 49

White's reply is forced) 2 Qxc4 Rxd I + ! (an important zwischenzug i.e.

a move which is interposed before a more obvious move such as a re­

bxc4 but Black fust

plays the deadly

Queen fo rks often occur in the opening. Here is one example: 1 e4 eS 2 NO Nc6 3 Bc4 DeS 4 b4 (the Evans Gambit) Bxb4 S c3 DeS 6 d4

exd4 7 0� dxc3? (he must try 7

QdS+ winning back the piece with the better game in view of the exposed position of Black's king. Pawn fo rks are also very common in the opening stages e. g. 1 e4 eS 2 NO Nc6 3 Bc4 Nf6 (the Two Knights' Defence) 4 Nc3 Nxe4! 5 Nxe4 dS winning back the piece with a good game. Note how cleverly Black exploits the pawn fork in the following position.

d6! 8 cxd4 Bb6) 8 Bxf7+! Kxf7 9

capture ; the normal move here would be 2

Rxd l with a check) 3 Qfl Bd4+! 4 Resigns.

78

would be 2 Rxd l with a check) 3 Qfl Bd4+! 4 Resigns. 78 Klovan (black)

Klovan (black)

Dvoretzky (white)

Nxc3 ! 2 Kxc3 Rxa3 +! 3 Rxa3 b4+ 4 Kb2 (unfortunately for

bxa3

S Bxe4 a2 queening the pawn) 4

Nxf7 KdS 8 Kb4 Ke6 9 Nd6 KxeS 10 Nxc4+ Bxc4 II Kxc4 Ke4 and the game ends not with a bang but a whisper; the whole operation has led to a winning end-game for Black whose king is nearer the pawns!

bxa3 + 5 Kxa3 Bxc2 6 Ng5 Bb3 7

White, he has to give up his bishop because 4 Kd2 loses to 4

3. Deflection

This is one of the commonest tactical elements. A piece defending against a threllt or protecting another piece is drawn away either by a threatened exchange or by a sacrifice, as can be clearly seen in our first example.

50 I The elements of chess tactics

79

50 I The elements of chess tactics 79 Zinser (black) Pressmann (white) White's bishop on b3

Zinser (black)

Pressmann (white)

White's bishop on b3 guards the knight on dl which is threatened

Be6! attacking the unpro­ Qxe3+, the sequel

by

Qd2+, so Black simply plays 1

tected bishop. As 2 Nxe3 loses a piece to 2

was

2

Bxe6 Qd2+ 3 Kfl Qxd 1 + 4 Kg2 Qgl + 5 Kh3 Qfl + 6 Kg3

Bf2 mate.