B m m m i

It seems that in Bauer-Hellner (1956) the Black King is safely defended by its pieces, but White finds a way to break through with two effective sacrifices.

I RxRPch! PxR (if 1 . . . KxR then 2 Q-N5ch K-R2 3 Q-R4ch K-N3 4 P-B5 mate) 2 Q-N8ch! NxQ 3 B-B5 mate.

In the Ring of Fire

These mating positions are often seen:

Here the Bishops are attacking the enemy King from different sides, encircling it in a ring of fire. The King's escape is also blocked by its own pieces. This blockade often occurs as a result of tangible defects in the position. Schul-der-Boden (1960) is a classic example.

Similar situations recur especially when one side has castled long, advanced the QBP, and a Bishop is on the KR2-QN8 diagonal, preventing the King from fleeing into the Queenside and the edge of the board.

In Canal—NN (1934), all the preconditions were present, but QR6, which from the KB could deal the fatal blow, was defended by both the QNP and the Queen.

The same tactics can work against a King in the center.

In Alekhin-Vasic (1931) the Bishop on QR3 takes nearby squares away from the King, while KN3 has been weakened by P-KR3.

These conditions create the theme for our familiar operations: 1 QxPch! PxQ 2 B-N6 mate.

The pawn can be removed by a Queen sacrifice on B6, but what about the Queen?

There is no alternative, as all the squares on the QR file are controlled by White. But now a situation analogous to the last example has arisen, the only difference being that the colors are reversed.

This is a position from Kauf-man-Filatov (1962), which is strikingly similar to the last one. Were the White Knight not on K5, the game could be immediately ended with I QxBch! This simply means that the Knight must vacate the King file with tempo.

1 NxQBP! PxN (a retreat by the Queen will change nothing) 2 QxBch PxQ 3 B-N6 mate.

The same patterns occur on the Kingside less frequently; usually under particularly unfavorable circumstances for the defending side.

Kellerman—Friedl (1955): I . . . Q-B3ch 2 N-B3 (2 N-B5 N-K6) 2 . . . B-K6ch 3 K-Bl QxNch! 4 PxQ B-R6 mate.

Black had a stunning combination in Devos—O'Kelly (1937).

In Ofstad—Uhlman (1963), Black, in spite of two extra pieces, loses because of his King's poor position: I Q-Q6ch B-K2 (there is nothing in 1 . . . N-K2 2 BxB) 2 RxB NxR 3 Q-B6ch! PxQ 4 B-R6 mate.

White played 1 NxP, counting on 1 . . . PxN 2 QxP P-B3 3 PxN, but the Belgian grandmaster had prepared a counter.

The King cannot return to KN1 because of B-K6 mate, but Black drives it there with a series of forced moves.

3 ... P-K5ch! 4 KxP N/2-B3ch 5 K-B3 N-K4ch 6 K-B2 N/3-N5ch 7 K-Nl.

White's replies were all obviously forced.

An Insurmountable Barrier

Two Bishops versus a lone King does not present any particularly difficult mating problems. When supported by the King, the final mating positions in the corner look like this:

Let us see how the King is driven into the corner.

I B-N2 K-Q5 2 B-B2ch K-K4 3 K-R2 K-B5 4 K-R3 K-K4 5 K-N4.

Zugzioang. The Bishops, operating on adjacent diagonals, cut the King off from the right side of the board, creating an insurmountable "static" barrier. Black must give way.

5 ... K-K3 6 B-N3 K-B3 7 B-K4 K-K3 8 K-N5 K-K2 9 B-B5 K-B2 10 B-Q6 K-Kl 11 K-B6.






Now the King must be forced into the corner, which presents no great difficulty as long as you are careful to avoid stalemate.

11 .. . K-Ql 12 B-K6 (12 K-B7?—stalemate) 12... K-K1 13 B-QB7 (13 B-K7?— stalemate) 13 .. . K-Bl 14

The stage is set: 16 B-Q6ch K-Nl 17 B-K6ch, and 18 B-K5 mate.

Anderssen's Immortal

Chessplayers the world over will never cease to marvel at the combination of a famous German master of the last century, Adolph Anderssen. In this book we have already seen his brilliance more than once. The next game (1852), whose ending we will examine, has been dubbed "immortal." Black was playing the well-known French master and popular chess author Dufresne.

Both sides are attacking, and it is not clear who will get there first. White has even sacrificed two pieces. It is White's move, and he concludes the battle with a stunning combination.

I RxNch! NxR 2 QxPch! KxQ 3 B-B5dbl ch K-Kl 4 B-Q7ch and on any retreat by the King, there follows 5 BxN mate.

... and Its Successors

The two Bishops and the pawn which supported them played a major role in Anders-sen's attack. Similar mating attacks have occurred more recently.

Let us look at several ways of reaching these positions.

In Stakhovich-Gechler (1955), the pawn on K6 and the cramped enemy King's position are the prerequisites for a final attack. White's maneuver is extremely amusing.

1 B-R6ch K-Nl 2 R-KB1 P-B3 3 B-K8! and Black resigns, since mate by the Bishop on KB7 is unstoppable.

The same idea can be seen in the concluding operations in Euwe-Blek (1928).

1 Q-R5 N-K4 2 Q-B7ch! NxQ 3 PxNch K-Bl 4 N-B5 mate.

And here is how Alekhin (White) brought it off against Forrester (1923).

I P-K6! Q-B3 2 BxPch K-Q1 3 B-B6dis ch! QxQ 4 P-K7 mate.

Solve It Yourself

The City of Cardiff vs. the City of Bristol (1884)

The City of Cardiff vs. the City of Bristol (1884)

Black's Move

Bristol, of course, is winning. It is a postal game.

Ivanov-Kutuev (1964)

Black's Move How eighty years fly by!

Teichman-NN (1914)

White's Move

1 N-N5! What follows I PxN?

Sergeev-Lebedev (1928)

Yvhite s jmove This is subtler.

C hetkovich-Molerovich (1951)

White's Move Far and near.

Nimzovich-Neumann (1899)

White's Move

The winner was thirteen years old.

Troitsky and Platov (1925)


Easy to trap, but how to hold?

Bruchner (1948)

Mate in Two Moves

Goldberg (1931)

wm m

Everything revolves around one small finesse.

White has three extra pawns, but they will perish infamously. Let them die a hero's death!

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