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.

28…Bxc7

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.

29…Rxe8??

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