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Alexey Suetin vs Ruslan Vladimirovich Shcherbakov
Warszawa 51/153 (Sherbakov,R) (1991), Warszawa 51/153 Sherbakov,R
Sicilian Defense: Chameleon (B20)  ·  0-1


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sac: 23...Qa4 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Nov-29-08  ruelas007: not too hard at all, its the first time i get a saturday puzzle
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The second move was a dilly! Black sac the queen on penalty of mate and in fact WINS black's queen.

Later,the white rook is sacrificed on the altar.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Two adjacent knights control an incredible number of squares. Here's a fantasy position showing their sphere of influence ...

click for larger view

But what can we do with our monster knights on d4 and e4? The answer is to shift them towards the kingside. After 36. Nxf3+ Kh1 37. Qg3 fg? 38. Nxg3# we have this picturesque mate:

click for larger view

That's the main plan - now all we need to do is test the alternatives where white runs to f1 or gives up material to avoid the mate. Didn't see all of it, but enough to be sure that the game continuation was playable.

Nov-29-08  Tactic101: Wow.. After being relatively inactive, I still solved the whole puzzle quite easily. Nothing left to say after the top puzzle solvers dissected this one, though. :)

The dancing knights make a simply beautiful arrangement. It is beautiful to see how they support one another. A great example that shows the coordination of the knights and the queen.

Rule of Thumb: never look to retreat when attacked. Look to press on.

If only I could apply such common-sense logic to my game.... :)

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Once: Two adjacent knights control an incredible number of squares.> 16 as in your diagram. :D
Premium Chessgames Member
  sleepyirv: After an awful week, I finally get Saturday! Probably a bit too easy for Saturday, but I'll certainly take it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <whiteshark: 16 as in your diagram. :D>

Yup - a quarter of the board. And unlike the long-range pieces (bishop, queen, rook), the sphere of influence is concentrated on a relatively small area.

Trivia question: which chess piece always controls the same number of squares on an empty board, regardless of which square it is standing on?

Premium Chessgames Member
  playground player: Enemy King's all alone in a corner, you've got both Knights and your Queen breathing down his neck--if that combination goes wrong, then nothing will go right, tovarisch!
Nov-29-08  SufferingBruin: There's something very wrong here. I've been playing some godawful chess lately, even for my rating (about 1200). And yet, I got this one. I mean, I nailed it.

Yeah, that last sentence sounds cocky ("nailed it") but, please, let me indulge. I needed this one.

Nov-29-08  EXIDE: Good puzzle. I went wrong after considering the first two moves. As a side question, does the Analysis Mode of Little Chess Partner work for anyone ? Nothing happens after I input the FEN notation. Nice if someone can give an actual example of an input that worked.
Nov-29-08  Patriot: I won't say I solved this one easily. After 36...Nf3+ 37.Kh1, I kept looking at 37...Qf4 threatening mate but after 38.gxf3 Qxf3+ 39.Kg1 I couldn't see a decent continuation for black. Finally I noticed 37...Qg3! and if 38.fxg3 Nxg3#.

So... 36...Nf3+ 37.Kh1 Qg3 38.gxf3 Nxf2+ 39.Qxf2 Qxf2

36...Nf3+ 37.Kf1 Ned2+ 38.Ke2 Qe4+ 39.Kd1 and 39...Qxb1+ 40.Qxb1 Nxb1 41.gxf3 Nc3+ is convincing enough but doesn't mean 39...Qxb1+ is best. 39...Qe1+ would need to be investigated if that moment arrives in the game.

During a game I would probably stop analyzing after 38...Qe4+ being convinced that black is likely winning, and would go ahead and play 36...Nf3+.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: <Patriot> <39...Qe1+ would need to be investigated if that moment arrives in the game.> I got one move further. 40.Kc2 Nd4+ and then black can capture the rook and is a piece (and a pawn) up. That made me decide that I would go ahead and play Nf3+ in a live game. I figure that black had Qg3 in response to Kh1 quickly, but I didn't see white could live, as in the game (not for long, obviously.)
Nov-29-08  Oliveira: <alwaysloosing: 41 Kc3 is checkmate in 9 moves (or loss of queen). Find out!>

36... Nf3; 37.Kf1, Ned2; 38.Ke2, Qe4; 39.Kd1, Qe1; 40.Kc2, Nd4; 41.Kc3?, Nb1; 42.Kd3 [42.Kc4, Qf1; 43.Kb4, Qa6], Qd1, 44.Ke3, Nc2

Position after 43... Qa6

click for larger view

Position after 44...Nc2

click for larger view

Nov-29-08  brazil chess: 37.Kf1 would make the game longer but white is lost anyways.
Nov-29-08  fizixgeek: Wonderful puzzle. No points for me.
Nov-29-08  Patriot: <Fusilli: <Patriot> <39...Qe1+ would need to be investigated if that moment arrives in the game.> I got one move further. 40.Kc2 Nd4+ and then black can capture the rook and is a piece (and a pawn) up. That made me decide that I would go ahead and play Nf3+ in a live game. I figure that black had Qg3 in response to Kh1 quickly, but I didn't see white could live, as in the game (not for long, obviously.)>

Good job! My main point though was that if you see a line that is forcibly winning, there's no need to analyze other candidates within the tree of analysis in search of something even better. But if you saw Qe1+ Kc2 Nd4+ wins at least a piece then you saw the better line first.

Nov-29-08  Hesam7: Nice combination but can White defend with another move beside 36.h3 ? Or is he already lost ?
Nov-29-08  Woody Wood Pusher: Yes I got the whole puzzle quite quickly today.

But unfortunately the puzzles are repeating so I have seen it before...

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I found the "solution" to this fairly quickly except I thought 40 Rb3 was better (but still lost) I could see Black was going to win the ending. Qg3 would be be one to find OTB but not too hard if one was alert!

Black handled his Svesnikov type opening very well.

"Examine all checks [mate and other material or 'forcing' threats also] and captures."

Nov-29-08  ILikeFruits: i am a member of the PETA...
save the animals...
become a vegan...
join the movement...
fight the power...
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White material advantage (R+B vs. 2N+P) seems to be compensated by the three black pieces aiming at the white king. The most immediate move is 36... Nf3+:

A) 37.Kh1 Qg3

A.1) 38.fxg3 Nxg3 mate.

A.2) 38.gxf3 Nxf2+ 39.Qxf2 Qxf2 40.Rb3 Qe1+ 41.Kg2 Qd2+ 42.Kg3 Qxd5 and Black has a winning endgame.

B) 37.Kf1 Ned2+ 38.Ke2 Qe4+39.Kd1 Qe1+ 40.Kc2 Nd4+

B.1) 41.Qxd4 Qxb1+ 42.Kxd2 exd4 winning.

B.2) 41.Kd3 Qxb1+ 42.Qxb1 Nxb1 and this knight can escape.

B.3) 41.Kc3 Nxb1+, again a pawn and a piece ahead.

Time to post and check.

Nov-30-08  njchess: I got this one pretty quickly. It wasn't too difficult since the first and second moves are practically forced for Black.
Dec-01-08  Woody Wood Pusher: More puzzles needed!
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For the Saturday Nov 29, 2008 puzzle, Black wins with 36...Nf3+! which initiates a decisive attack against White's helpless King.

The clever 42...e4! sets up a winning pinning combination to finish the game.

Oct-29-10  sevenseaman: Black gives up both his rooks but when it came to the Knights, he was able to extract a huge price.
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