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Compiled by Sneaky

Sometimes, less is more! The problemist in me loves to see underpromotions in real games.

Stick a fork in him, he's done!
Z Mestrovic vs Gligoric, 1971 
(A45) Queen's Pawn Game, 29 moves, 0-1

A knight does the trick!
Z Gofshtein vs M Gurevich, 2001 
(C11) French, 39 moves, 1-0

Careful of that stalemate...
I Khamrakulova vs E Ubiennykh, 2001 
(C45) Scotch Game, 80 moves, 1-0

A knight check can win a tempo and the game
W Sauermann vs N A Preo, 1965 
(C81) Ruy Lopez, Open, Howell Attack, 50 moves, 0-1

Never miss a mate in one!
W Strum vs J McManus, 1997 
(C35) King's Gambit Accepted, Cunningham, 40 moves, 1-0

Underpromote, to prevent getting mated.
P Cramling vs A M Galliamova, 1994 
(D44) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 39 moves, 1-0

Sometimes you do it just to be a wiseguy...
V Malakhov vs E Shaposhnikov, 2001 
(A17) English, 64 moves, 1-0

A check is worth a tempo
N Szuveges vs M Ninchich, 1999 
(D06) Queen's Gambit Declined, 39 moves, 1-0

Computers underpromote for reasons known only to themselves
Deep Junior vs Deep Fritz, 2001 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 109 moves, 1-0

An underpromotion on move SEVEN!
Korody vs Bologh, 1933 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 8 moves, 0-1

A knight-check can keep the initiative burning.
Shumov vs Jaenisch, 1850 
(C44) King's Pawn Game, 20 moves, 1-0

A knight check sure beats getting mated.
Furman vs Keres, 1948 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 56 moves, 1-0

If it going to be captured anyhow, might as well take a knight.
Junior vs Gandalf, 2001 
(D10) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 32 moves, 1-0

Take a rook, just to prove you can.
Keres vs J Turn, 1943 
(C86) Ruy Lopez, Worrall Attack, 56 moves, 1-0

A knight check can keep the initiative.
D Fidlow vs A Maier, 1959 
(D32) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch, 8 moves, 1-0

Another timely knight-check.
Janowski vs O Chajes, 1913 
(C49) Four Knights, 108 moves, 1-0

A bishop avoids the draw and sets up the mate.
D Tomic vs F Winzbeck, 1993 
(B83) Sicilian, 44 moves, 1-0

An underpromotion crops up in a basic R vs P ending
A Evdokimov vs Sveshnikov, 2003 
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 86 moves, 1/2-1/2

A brilliant draw through underpromotion.
L Day vs Timman, 1980 
(A00) Uncommon Opening, 93 moves, 1/2-1/2

Take any piece you want, it won't help you...
Akobian vs J Torres, 2003 
(D14) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Exchange Variation, 38 moves, 0-1

A beautiful game ender: a knight born in the corner!
S Atalik vs Miles, 1993 
(E81) King's Indian, Samisch, 30 moves, 0-1

Two bishops are born on the 8th rank.
Vidmar vs Maroczy, 1932 
(D34) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch, 129 moves, 1/2-1/2

Another double bishop frenzy!
Fedorowicz vs E B Meyer, 1978 
(B41) Sicilian, Kan, 59 moves, 1-0

Take a knight to avoid getting perpetual checked!
Schlechter vs H Wolf, 1904 
(C30) King's Gambit Declined, 44 moves, 1-0

38. ? White to play and win.
Gulko vs K Grigorian, 1971 
(A55) Old Indian, Main line, 40 moves, 1-0

Queen or knight were reasonable, but a knight was more forcing.
Chandler vs Karpov, 1983 
(C50) Giuoco Piano, 30 moves, 0-1

A knight can fork a queen, but not a knight!
R A Ziatdinov vs V M Mikhalevski, 2005 
(C80) Ruy Lopez, Open, 91 moves, 1/2-1/2

This situation comes up often in endings. Be careful!
Sajtar vs Benko, 1954 
(A54) Old Indian, Ukrainian Variation, 4.Nf3, 86 moves, 1-0

The final piece to the mating net: a knight.
Larsen vs C Munoz, 1957 
(A15) English, 34 moves, 0-1

Try to solve 40...? Black to play and win.
Tal vs Spassky, 1954 
(A60) Benoni Defense, 45 moves, 0-1

Another basic R+P ending requires an underpromotion.
Bareev vs Shirov, 2006 
(A20) English, 91 moves, 1/2-1/2

A miracle draw by underpromotion
Adams vs Miles, 1993 
(B72) Sicilian, Dragon, 122 moves, 1/2-1/2

Karjakin's f8=N+ looks good but fails.
Karjakin vs Anand, 2006 
(B90) Sicilian, Najdorf, 37 moves, 0-1

The final move makes a very good puzzle.
M Lange vs G Schultz, 1863 
(C72) Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, 5.O-O, 48 moves, 1-0

Checkmate: it's better to give than to receive.
A Sandrin vs P Le Cornu, 1949 
(A16) English, 28 moves, 1-0

Taking a bishop just to be cheeky.
Ponomariov vs D Baramidze, 2014 
(C95) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Breyer, 65 moves, 1/2-1/2

Better to take a knight than to take nothing at all.
Aranov vs Karpov, 1962 
(C10) French, 71 moves, 0-1

A knight gives check, preserving the initiative.
Karpov vs Timman, 1986 
(A15) English, 105 moves, 1-0

Hanging queen + pawn to promote = a knight with check.
Van Wely vs Mamedyarov, 2004 
(A52) Budapest Gambit, 48 moves, 0-1

Two underpromotions are sometimes necessary.
V Zurakhov vs Koblents, 1956 
(C11) French, 80 moves, 1-0

Nakamura has a wry sense of humor.
Crafty vs Nakamura, 2007 
(A00) Uncommon Opening, 155 moves, 0-1

A knight is the only way to avoid mate.
N Huschenbeth vs R Swinkels, 2008 
(B67) Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer Attack, 7...a6 Defense, 8...Bd7, 36 moves, 1/2-1/2

Pop quiz: A knight can't fork a king and a _____?
S Y Shipov vs V V Gagarin, 1994 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 60 moves, 1/2-1/2

Time trouble? Underpromote and confuse!
V Salnikov vs Bezgodov, 1991 
(C40) King's Knight Opening, 64 moves, 0-1

A 1737 Stamma composition come to life!
Svidler vs V Malakhov, 2009 
(D15) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 31 moves, 0-1

Naka catches Krammy with a surprise knight check
Nakamura vs Kramnik, 2012 
(A05) Reti Opening, 80 moves, 1-0

Knight after Knight ;-)
S Schweber vs B Wexler, 1964 
(B42) Sicilian, Kan, 47 moves, 1-0

A bishop promotion in a real game. AMAZING!
A Reshko vs O Kaminsky, 1972 
(A29) English, Four Knights, Kingside Fianchetto, 71 moves, 1-0

48 games

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