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Sonja Graf-Stevenson vs Semmler
Mnichov (1932)  ·  Queen's Gambit Declined: General (D30)  ·  1-0
To move:
Last move:

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sac: 31.Qxf7+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-09-12  zb2cr: I wasted about 2 minutes trying to make 31. Rg8+ work, looking for follow-up moves such as 32. Nf6+, when I finally hit on the idea of 31.Qxf7+ and realized that after the forced recapture, 32. Rf1+ would put Black in a position where all he had was useless interpositions. The Knight seals off e7, the Rook at g6 seals off e6 and the g-file, and the Rook at g6 is protected by a Pawn.
Jan-09-12  JuliusDS: That was harder than yesterday! :P
Jan-09-12  CHESSTTCAMPS: Black, down a knight, threatens 31... Rxf5 and may have hopes for a continuation such as 31.Qf3?? Rd8 32.Nc3?? Rxh5+ winning. Instead, white can force mate with 32.Qxf7+! Kxf7 33.Rf1+ etc. Even though a queen sac is normal on a Monday, the pattern is a little unusual with the defending king off the edge and the Re8 required for the mate to work.
Jan-09-12  srag: "Monday monday,
So good to me! ..."
Jan-09-12  solskytz: A Monday? A Queen Sac? A Check? Yey!!
Jan-09-12  CHESSTTCAMPS: I was going to make a comment similar to <morfishine:> about pattern recognition, but he has phrased it better. Evidently, several experienced kibitzers took longer than usual on this particular Monday puzzle.
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sasportas: Nice puzzle, perhaps more difficult than a normal Monday - ut one complaint: The game was most certainly played in MUNICH (German: München, Czech: Mnichov), and not in one of the tiny villages in Czechoslovakia also called Mnichov!
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: I'm not sure anybody mentioned it before, but if Semmler wanted to prolong the agony one move longer after Rf1+, then Qf2, Rxf2+, and then Rf5, Rxf5#.
Jan-09-12  Sassa: 31. Qxf7 Kxf7 32. Rf1+ (… Qf2 33. Rxf2+ Rf5 34. Rxf5++) Nice Monday puzzle. Got it right!
Jan-09-12  Skafi: Like some others I looked for a continuation after 31.Rg8+, for a while. Got it after 1-2 min :)
Jan-09-12  abuzic: A nice Q sac:
31.Qxf7+ Kxf7
32.Rf1+ Qf2 <32...Rf4 33.Rxf5#>

33.Rxf2+ Rf5
33.Rxf5#

Going back to move <30.Rxg6+>: Here white could win in another way:

30.Qf6+ Kf8 31.hxg6 Rh5+ 32.Rh4 Rxh4+ 33.Qxh4 Re6 34.Qxh6+ Ke8 35.gxf7+ Kd7 36.Nxb6++ Kc7 37.Rd7+ Kxb6 38.Qxe6+ Kb5 39.Rd5 Qxd5 40.Qxd5+ and mate soon.

But <30.Rxg6+> played is more forcing:

30...fxg6 <30...Kf8 played leads to today's puzzle>

31.Qxg6+ <31.Qxf6 also forces mate>

31...Kh8
32.Qxh6+ Kg8
33.Nf6+ Kf7
34.Qg6+ Ke7
35.Rd7+ Ke6
36.Qf7+ Kf5
37.Nh7+ <or 37.Ne4+ leads to same mate position>

37...Kg7
38.Qf3+ Kh4
39.Qh3#.

Going back a little further <28.Rg4 Rfe8?> 28...Kh8 is better defence here:

28...Kh8 29.h5 Ne7 30.Nxe7 Qxe7 31.Qf4 Rg8 32.Rxg8+ Kxg8 although white stands better.

Instead of <28.Rg4> white could do better with

28.h5 Ne7
29.Qg4+ Kh8
30.Rc4 Qf2 <or 30...Qxd5 31.Rxd5 Nxd5 32.Rd4 Rxe5 33.Qf3 Rd8 34.Qxd7 Re7 35.Qg6 Rg8 36.Qe6 etc...>

31.Rf4 Qc2
32.Nxe7 Rxe7
33.Rd6 f5
34.Rxh6+ Rh7
35.Rxh7+ Kxh7
36.Qg6+ Kh8
37.Qh6+ Kg8
38.Qg5+ Kh8
39.Rf3
and black can surrender.

Going back further to the N sac: <21.Nxh6+!> in fact it was a necessary move as if 21.Qg3 Nh5 wins the white R.

21.Nxh6+! Kh7? <21...gxh6 22.Qxc5 bxc5 23.Rxf6, is better for black, although white still stands better>

22.e5 Be4
23.Bex4 <23.Rxe4 is also playable here>

23...Nxe4
24.Rxe4 <24.Nxe4! wins, for example 24.Nxe4 Qxe5 25.Nf5 Nxf4 26.Qh4+ Kg8 27.Ne7+ Qxe7 28.Qxe7>.

Jan-09-12  TheTamale: OK, I have been stumped by Monday puzzles before, and usually when I am there are comments such as "easiest puzzle in a while" and "too easy for a Monday" abounding. So it was gratifying for me to basically solve this the second I looked at it and then read that others had a hard time with it. For one brief second of life, the tamale had become the master. (Well, 1600-class player, maybe.)
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  woody b: like so many others i immediately saw Qxf7+ and dismissed it. i simply didn't see that the Rook g6 is protected by h5! my "solution" was
31. Rg8+ Kxf8
32. Nf6+ Kf8 ?
33. Ne7+ Ke7 ??
34. Qf6# knowing this was too complicated for a monday...
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: A little harder than usual,but the fact that it is a Monday puzzle screamed for a queen sac. The fortified rook guards both the sixth rank and the g file- and the knight guards e7 AND blocks the queen's defense of the rook so the queen sac leads to a three move mate.
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  gawain: Looks like a Monday. The White Queen must die!

31 Qxf7+ Kxf7 32 Rf1+ and mate follows

Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  YouRang: Geez, I spent the longest time on this.

I even looked at 31.Qxf7+, but couldn't make it work because some weird blindness prevented me from noticing that my rook on g6 is guarded by the pawn. :-(

Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  SuperPatzer77: <YouRang> <Geez, I spent the longest time on this.

I even looked at 31.Qxf7+, but couldn't make it work because some weird blindness prevented me from noticing that my rook on g6 is guarded by the pawn. :-(>

<YouRang> You're not alone. I didn't see it, either. Uuugh!!

SuperPatzer77

Jan-09-12  Dr. J: <sevenseaman: Is Q the most sacced piece in chess, maybe next to a P?>

Only on Mondays.

Jan-09-12  Dr. J: If <30 Rxg6+ <fxg6>> I see 31 Qxg6+ Kh8 (best) 32 Qxh6+ Kg8 33 Nf6+ Kf7 34 Qg6+ Ke7 (best) 35 Rd7+ Ke6 36 Qf7+ Kf5 37 Nh7+ Kg4 (best) 38 Qf3+ Kh4 39 Qh3#

Does anyone see a faster mate?

And I agree: with an unusual pattern mate-in-4, I would rate this as a Tuesday puzzle.

Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn Derous: Qf7+ is further extrapolation necessary?
Jan-09-12  cjgone: Completely missed this one...
Jan-09-12  Penguincw: Interesting mid board mate.
Jan-09-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajile: See a queen sac, take a queen sac.

That's my motto.

Jan-09-12  ruzon: Earlier today I had a pleasure of losing a simul to IM Marc Arnold. I lost a little less spectacularly than poor Semmler did, but at least he generated some counterplay.
Jan-09-12  polarx: Hey, ruzon, since you have mentioned it, you could have posted the game.
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