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William Hook vs John C Fernandez
27th World Open (1999), Philadelphia, PA USA, rd 3, Jun-??
Zukertort Opening: Dutch Variation (A04)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Happy April 15th! To all Americans, please note that your taxes are not due 'til Mon/Apr/18, so rest easy (if you live in Maine or Massachusetts, you get a bonus day).

However, for those who are MLB fans, today is Jackie Robinson Day across the league.

Seems like a lot of events happen every year on April 15th.


Anyway, I thought I came close to getting this puzzle, but nope. Well, I got the right idea of moving the knight to give check on f3, but I went with 21...Nxe3.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black is one pawn down.

White threatens 22.hxg3.

The first idea that comes to mind is 21... Nxf2:

A) 22.Nxf2 Qf3+

A.1) 23.Kf1 Qh1+ 24.Ke2 Rxf2+ 25.Kxf2 Qh2+ 26.Kf3 (26.Kf1 Rf8+ 27.Qf2 Q(R)xf2#) 26... Rf8+ 27.Kg4 (27.Ke4 Qxc2+ and 28... Qxb2 - + [Q+B vs R]) 27... Qxc2 - + [Q vs R].

A.2) 23.Kh2 Qxf2+ 24.Qxf2 Rxf2+ followed by 25... Rxb2 - + [B].

A.3) 23.Kg1 Qxg3+

A.3.a) 24.Kh1 Rxf2 25.Qg6+ Kf8 26.Qxh6+ Ke8

A.3.a.i) 27.Qh5+ Kd7 28.Qg4+ (28.Rad1+ Bd6 wins; 28.Qh7+ Kc8 wins) 28... Qxg4 29.hxg4 Rxb2 - + [B+P].

A.3.a.ii) 27.Qh8+ Kd7 followed by Kc8 or Bd6 wins.

A.3.a.iii) 27.Qg6+ Kd7 as in A.3.a.ii.

A.3.b) 24.Kf1 Qxh3+ 25.Kg1 (25.Ke2 Rxf2+ as in A.1) 25... Qg3+ 26.Kf1 (26.Kh1 is similar to A.3.a) 26... Rxf2+ 27.Qxf2 Rf8 28.Qxf8+ Kxf8 - + followed by Bxe3 or Qxe3 [Q+3P vs 2R].

B) 22.h4 Qf3+

B.1) 23.Kf1 Nh3+ 24.Nf2 Qxf2+ 25.Qxf2 Rxf2#.

B.2) 23.Kh2 Nxe4 wins.

B.3) 23.Kg1 Nxe4 wins.

Apr-15-16  diagonalley: i rate this very difficult
Apr-15-16  not not: black pawn down, but open lines

I would sacrifice my knight on e3 - to get rook and 2 pawns for bishop and knight

then invade with queen via f3 square

or maybe even invade before retaking with bishop just to confuse issue

Apr-15-16  patzer2: Interesting biography on William Hook, especially as a contemporary of the young Bobby Fischer.

In today's Friday puzzle, I found Hook's neat 21...Nxg2! and the follow-up 22. Nxf2 Qxf3+ (-5.48 @ 20 depth, Deep Fritz 15).

The piece exchange count looks about even, with White having two Rooks and a Bishop to Black's Queen and Bishop. However, Black's two monster passed King-side pawns are unstoppable.

For a Black improvement, I'd ditch 11...g5? which allows 12. Nxg5! Bxg2 13. Nxe6 Bb7 14. d5 (+1.20 @ 20 depth, Deep Fritz 15).

Instead, 11...Ne4 = (0.27 @ 20 depth, Deep Fritz 15) looks solid.

Apr-15-16  gofer: <21 ... Nxf2>

Threatening Qxh3+ mating, so white has to take back.

<22 Nxf2 Qf3+>

23 Kh2 Qxf2+
24 Qxf2 Rxf2+

23 Kf1 Qh1+
24 Ke2 Rxf2+
25 Kxf2 Qh2+

<23 Kg1 Qxg3+>

24 Kh1 Rxf2

<24 Kf1 Qxh3+>
<25 Kg1 Qg3+>

26 Kh1 Rxf2

<26 Kf1 ...>

click for larger view

At this point I would probably chicken out and play <26 ... Rxf2+> and try to win the pawn race. But I am wondering whether there is anything better? Perhaps <26 ... d4> or <26 ... Rf6>? Obviously we cannot allow Qg6+ drawing by perpetual check, so we need to stop that threat.

But if we could, then we could get to the point where we get to play Bxe3 which tips the balance to a simple win!


Yep, okay. I give myself a pat on the back and move on, but I am still wondering what the silicon monsters say to <26 ... d4> or <26 ... Rf6>?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Elrathia Kingi: 19.Qc2 looks questionable. White should try something more aggressive, maybe 19.Ne4, with threats to both e5 and the Nf6? But this fails to 19...Nxe4 20.Qxe4 Rd2. So,19.Rad1 seems like the correct move, to continue development and challenge the open file. The revealed attacks on the queen are meaningless, as the queen just moves away. This move keeps the advantage for white. The queen retreat, however, loses the advantage.

After the N lands on g4, there is no defense. The e-Rook cannot defend f2, on account of the N fork on e3 (i.e., 20.Re2 Rxf2! 21.Rxf2 Nxe3, winning the Q). 20.f3 results in another tactic:

click for larger view

20...Rxf3! 21.Kxf3 Qh5, with a devastating attack. (or alternately, the more mundane Nxe3 simply wins the exchange.)

So, the Q retreat to c2 was the losing move, and in fact took the evaluation from a stable, long-term advantage to white to a dynamic huge advantage for black.

Apr-15-16  morfishine: <21...Nxf2> wrecks White's position after 22.Nxf2 Qf3+
Apr-15-16  gofer: I really do like <26 ... Rf6!>.

Crafty doesn't stand very well against it, but try it yourself!

The colours have to be reversed (limit of the software that is it always <white to play>), so the first move is Rf3.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Black won by hook or crook.
Apr-15-16  saturn2: If you see two first two moves (I did) Nxf2 and Qf3+ you are almost through. White gets at least the knight back plus a won position with black's king being very unsafe.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: After 21...Nxf2, white can decline to take the knight and try 22 Kg1. This loses in two ways.

22...Qxh3, below (which transposes to the text position after 26 Kf1 but in two fewer moves)

click for larger view

Or the more sublime 22... Qg6!, pinning the knight.

click for larger view

Apr-15-16  devere: 19. Qc2?? was of course a losing move. If simply 19.Rad1 White stands much better than Black.

In today's problem 21...Nxf2 wasn't hard for me to see. After 22.Nxf2 Qf3+ 23.Kg1 Qxg3+ 24.Kf1 (after 24.Kh1 Rxf2 25.Qg6+ Black can escape the checks) Qxh3+ 25.Kg1 Qg3+ 26.Kf1 e4 White's position looks hopeless

click for larger view

27...Qh2 is threatened, and if 27.Re2, ...Rd3 or ...Bxe3 are both good enough to win.

Apr-15-16  bengalcat47: I wonder if William Hook is any relation to James?
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: After the storm of sacs-exchanges, black has only a queen for two rooks...but also has the two passed pawns. AND they decide the game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Missed this one. I went for the fork at e3! :(
Apr-15-16  The Kings Domain: Missed by a nearby square. Black's dangerous sacrifice is compelling, as one false move and white checkmates him. Good puzzle.
Apr-15-16  AlicesKnight: I got ....Nf2 and the queen checks but started speculating about Bxe3 and Rd2, ignoring White's K-side counter - silly me.
Apr-15-16  alphee: Got it up to ♘f2 22. ♘f2 ♕f3 23. ♔g1 ♕g3 24. ♔f1 ♕h3 25. ♔g1 ♕g3 but could not see what would happen next. Hence I though it was something different but no ... that was it.
Apr-15-16  mel gibson: I didn't get this one -
you have to see so far ahead.
The winning move is great but careful moves must follow.
Apr-15-16  CHESSTTCAMPS: White is up a pawn, but black has a strong attack with the rooks commanding open and semi-open file, while Q+N are aggressively placed against a lightly defended king-side. My first impression was Rxf2+, but the initial analysis didn't look promising. It soon became apparent that

21... Nxf2! is more powerful and logical. For starters, it threatens a 2-move mate:

A. 22.Nxc5? (or 22.g4 or 22.Bxe5 and others) Qxh3+ 23.Kg1 Qh1#

B. 22.Nxf2 Qf3+ 23.Kg1 Qxg3+ 24.Kh1 Rxf2! (Qxf2?? 25.Qg6+ Kh8 26.Bxe5+ wins for white) 25.Qg6+ Kf8 26.Qxh6+ Ke8 27.Qe6+ Be7 28.Qg8+ (Qg6+ Kd7 29.Rad1+ Bd6) Kd7 29.Qd5+ Bd6 30.Qb5+ Ke7 and white is out of useful checks, with no defense against the dual threat of 31... Rh2#/Qh2#.

B.1 23.Kf1? Qh1+ 24.Ke2 Rxf2+ 25.Kxf2 Qh2+ 26.Kf3 (Kf1 Rf8+ forces mate) Rf8+ 27.Kg4 Qxc2 is crushing.

B.2 23.Kh2 Qxf2+ 24.Qxf2 Rxf2+ 25.K moves Rxb2 wins a piece.

Time for review...

Apr-16-16  CHESSTTCAMPS: I also saw the text moves 24.Kf1 Qxh3+ up to 27... Rf8, but failed to write it up as B.3.

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