White to Play and Twin

By GM Pal Benko

One of the satisfying aspects of a composed "twin" is that significantly different themes can be examined with only small changes on the board.

Twins are rare in artistic endgames. The main reason is that the composer must discover and combine ideas with only one change in the original starting position. This task has become easier due to computers.

Acceptable changes include moving a piece from one square to another, remov ing it, or replacing it entirely with another piece. Most gratifying is when a small change yields a big effect. It is both sur prising and amusing when distinct ideas are hiding in two practically identical positions. This month we will briefly review some technical aspects of the twin.

Here is an old but practical example:

Pioneer

Kling & Horwitz,1851

White to play and draw

II. All men one file to right. White to play but Black wins.

The position shift works, but in the first diagram the white rook would be better positioned on g4.

Solution for II: 1. Rh3 Ra1 2. Rxe3 Ra4+ wins for Black. This example has the drawback of a black win a new condi tion yielding two changes. Therefore I suggest:

(see top of next column)

Pal Benko - after Kling & Horwitz

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