Recognising the Patterns : Challenge # 14

Today’s Challenge: Find the typical pattern and react accordingly

David Janowski against Carl Schlechter in 1899: White to move

Q: Black’s last move was …Rf8-f7, was it a wise decision?
A: It was a blunder which loses very quickly. Janowski continued as follows:

34. Qxh7!! Kxh7 35. Rh5 Kg8

Now what?

36. Ng6! 1-0

Black resigned as Rh8 and Rf8 mate can’t be avoided.

This method of checkmate in known as the Hook mate where the rook, supported by a protected knight, delivers checkmate on last rank.

Fischer against Jose Luis Garcia Bachiller in 1970: White to move

Q: White is winning anyway but find the quickest way to finish things off.
A: Fischer won as follows:

25. Nf6+ Kh8

If 25…Kf8 then 26. Qd7 leads to checkmate. The text allows a nice finish.

26. Qxg7!! 1-0

Black resigned in view of 26…Kxg7 27. Rg4+ Kf8 28. Rg8+ Ke7 29. Re8#.

Sometimes your opponent can prevent the checkmate at the cost of some material, as in the following example:

David Navara against Martyn Goodger in 2012: White to move

Q: White has 2 extra pawns and strong knight on e6; how can he convert his advantage into win quickly?
A: Navara continued as follows:

35. Bf6! Nxf6

If 35…exf6 then 36. Qe4 wins a rook and if 35..Kxf6 then 36. Qd4+ is winning.

36. Rf8+ 1-0

This wins the queen.

Bas, Van de Plassche against Johan De wolf in 1997: White to move

Q: How can White pocket the game using the very strong knight on g6?
A: White can win a piece by force as follows:

27. Re7+ Kg8

If 27…Rxe7 then 28. Rxe7+ wins the piece on c7 on next move

28. Nxc7

Removing the defender of e8 and Black can’t take that knight with either of his pieces.


If 28…Rxc7 then 29.Re8+ Kh8 (or 29…Rxe8 30. Rxe8+ and mate next move) 30. Rxd8 is winning.

29. Re8+

Q: Can you any better continuation than text move?
A: White can force checkmate with 29. Rxd7.


This leads to mate in two though 29…Kh7 is also losing due to 30. Nf8+ followed by winning the rook on d7 with a discovered check.

30. Rxe8+ Kf7 31.Rf8# 1-0

Ashvin Chauhan