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Discovered pins
Compiled by notyetagm
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Every <DISCOVERED ATTACK> is a <DISCOVERED PIN> because a <DISCOVERED ATTACK> unmasks an attack by a <LINE PIECE> and <EST - EVERY SINGLE TIME> you are attacked by a <LINE PIECE> you are <PINNED/SKEWERED> to the squares behind you.

Using the masking piece to take what the newly pinned piece no longer defends. Use the masking piece to exploit the pin that is created when this masking piece moves off of the line of the masked line piece(s) behind it.

Discovered attacks which make things pinned are dangerous, dangerous, dangerous.

A complex example of a <DISCOVERED PIN> was played by Rybka Beta (Black) in the following position against Shredder 9:


click for larger view

First notice the loose h2-square next to the White h1-king, attacked once by the Black g4-knight and defended only by the White h1-king. Loose squares next to your king that the enemy can coordinate on are dangerous!

Can Black coordinate on this loose h2-square, a potential mating focal point? Yes. Black has a b2-rook -and- and his f2-queen all lined up and ready to go to h2 and give mate.

Black needs -only- the b2-rook, the rear piece of the lateral battery, to give mate since the h2-mating focal point is already loose. What is stopping Black from playing 1 ... ♖b2-h2#? Two pieces are stopping this threat by <BLOCKING> the line of attack from the Black b2-rook to the h2-mating focal point, the Black f2-queen and White g2-pawn. The Black f2-queen <MASKS> the Black b2-rook while the White g2-pawn is <PINNED> by the Black b2-rook.

Masking piece, pinned piece, pinned piece, masking. The <DISCOVERED PIN> tactic is ready to go. Rybka played the brilliant 1 ... ♕f3!!, using the masking piece (Black f2-queen) to exploit the <PIN> created by the unmasking of the rear piece (Black b2-rook) by taking what the newly <PINNED> defender (White g2-pawn) only -pretends- to defend (f3-square).


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Now clearly 2 px♕?? runs into 2 ... ♖xh2#, a <PINNING> them. And since Rybka also utilizes the <CLEARANCE> theme by vacating the f2-square to threaten the <SMOTHERED MATE> 2 ... ♘f2#, White simply has too many threats to meet and loses decisive material.

31 ... Rg4xh4+! exploits the newly pinned White g3-bishop
S A Iuldachev vs Aronian, 2004 
(B25) Sicilian, Closed, 32 moves, 0-1

35 ... Rf3xg3+! exploits the newly pinned White f2-pawn
J Smeets vs Carlsen, 2006 
(B33) Sicilian, 43 moves, 0-1

27 Rd2-d3 Qc3xRd3! Black c8-rook pins White c2-pawn to c1-king
S Erenburg vs Sakaev, 2005 
(B75) Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 27 moves, 0-1

38 ... Rf6xBe6! Black f8-rook pins White f5-pawn to f4-queen
Ivanchuk vs Radjabov, 2009 
(E97) King's Indian, 41 moves, 0-1

17 Ne5xf7!! exploits the newly pinned-to-e-file Black e6-bishop
Adams vs M Hennigan, 2001 
(B30) Sicilian, 17 moves, 1-0

28 ... Rf3xh3+! White g2-queen must block the a8-h1 diagonal
Hampyuk vs Karpov, 1965 
(C92) Ruy Lopez, Closed, 28 moves, 0-1

23 Qf4xNe5! Black d6-pawn pinned to d-file by White d1-rook
Movsesian vs U Boensch, 1999 
(B80) Sicilian, Scheveningen, 23 moves, 1-0

42 Nh5-g3 Ne4xNg3+! Black c6-queen pins White g2-queen, h1-king
Anand vs Kasparov, 1997 
(B84) Sicilian, Scheveningen, 41 moves, 0-1

21 Nc3xd5! exploits the pin on Black c6-pawn by White c1-queen
Kasparov vs Serper, 1998 
(D35) Queen's Gambit Declined, 21 moves, 1-0

19 ... Nf6xe4! White f3-pawn pinned to f2-mating focal point
Lasker vs Steinitz, 1896 
(C71) Ruy Lopez, 30 moves, 0-1

32 Qe7xRf8! White g7-rook pins Black d7-knight to Black c7-king
Short vs Karjakin, 2008 
(B23) Sicilian, Closed, 32 moves, 1-0

38 Rf6xg6+!! White f1-rook pins Black f7-pawn to loose f8-rook
Short vs Stefansson, 2002 
(A07) King's Indian Attack, 38 moves, 1-0

8 ... Nd5-e3+! Black d8-queen pins d2-pawn to undef d1-queen
Iverhov vs Ilianako, 1957 
(C35) King's Gambit Accepted, Cunningham, 8 moves, 0-1

88 ... Rg3xh3+! exploits the newly pinned White g2-pawn
I Kadimova vs R Norinkeviciute, 2006 
(A00) Uncommon Opening, 88 moves, 0-1

21 Rxf4! Black e5-pawn newly pinned to e-file cannot defend f4
F Hernandez Basante vs J Kamowa, 2006 
(D01) Richter-Veresov Attack, 23 moves, 1-0

34 Rb1-c1? to cover the c2-square runs into 34 ... Rg4xf4+!
Janowski vs Capablanca, 1916  
(D15) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 46 moves, 0-1

22 .. Nd5-e3! Black d8-rook pins White d2-pawn to undef d1-rook
Fischer vs Smyslov, 1970 
(A02) Bird's Opening, 64 moves, 1-0

27 .. Rf5xe5! Black f7-queen,f8-rook pin White f4-pawn to f1-sq
Tal vs Fischer, 1970 
(B50) Sicilian, 51 moves, 0-1

22 .. Nb4-d5?! Black a4-queen pins c4-pawn to f4-queen defender
Marshall vs Capablanca, 1931 
(E16) Queen's Indian, 36 moves, 0-1

19 games

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