The recently published award by Sergey Didukh of the study composing tournament of The Problemist for the years 2010 to 2011 contains another very quotable production from Oleg Pervakov. So I am going to quote it and hope that this atones for the Pervakov-free zone that this column was until last month.
2nd Prize, The Problemist, 2010-2011
White to play and win
White is two exchanges ahead and both sides have threatening passed pawns, with the black ones further advanced. Black also threatens mate on g4. 1.Re4! White has either this rook sacrifice or the quieter 1.Rg1? which only draws – 1...b2 2.Rab1 axb1Q 3.b7 Qa1 4.b8Q+ Bg8 5.d7 b1Q = 1...b2 Accepting the offered rook leads to a swift finish – 1...Nxe4? 2.d7 Nd6 3.d8Q+ Ne8 4.Re1 Be6 5.Qxe8+ Bg8 6.Qe5# 2.Rb1!! As we'll see in the moves and analysis ahead, it’s better for the rook to be taken on b1, especially when blocked by the pawn on b2. Black has enough resources to repel more direct approaches – 2.d7? bxa1Q 3.Re8+ Bg8 4.Rxg8+ Kxg8 5.d8Q+ Kf7 6.Qd7+ Kf8 7.Qd8+ Kf7 8.Qd7+ =; 2.b7? bxa1Q 3.b8Q+ Bg8 4.Qf8 Nxe4 5.d7 Nd6 6.Qxg8+ Kxg8 7.d8Q+ Kf7 8.Qd7+ Kf8 9.Qxd6+ Ke8 10.Qe6+ Kd8 11.Qd6+ =; 2.Rf1? b1Q 3.d7 Qxb6 4.Rxf2 Qxf2 5.d8Q+ Bg8 6.Qd4+ Qxd4 7.Rxd4 a1Q 8.Rd7 Qxa4 9.Rxh7+ Bxh7 = 2...Nxe4 Black can now choose which rook to capture. Capturing and promoting at the same time leads to less interesting play - 2...axb1Q 3.b7 Bg8 (3...Qxe4? 4.b8Q+ Be8 5.Qxb2+ Qd4 6.Qxd4+ Kg8 7.Qg7#) 4.b8Q Qa1 5.d7 Ng4+ 6.Rxg4 b1Q 7.Qxg8+ Kxg8 8.d8Q+ Kf7 9.Qd7+ Kf8 10.Rf4+ Qf5 11.Rxf5+ gxf5 12.Kxh7 Qe1 13.Kg6 Qe7 14.Qxf5+ Ke8 15.Qc8+ Qd8 16.Qxd8+ Kxd8 17.Kf7 1-0 3.b7! A critical decision for White. Pushing the other pawn draws because of the lack of a resource we’ll see later. 3.d7? Nf6 4.d8Q+ Ng8+ 5.Qxg8+ Bxg8 6.b7 a1B! 7.b8B Ba2 8.Be5+ Kg8 9.Bxb2 Bxb1 = 3...Nf6! 4.b8Q+ Ng8+ 5.Qxg8+ Bxg8 5...Kxg8 6.d7 Be6 7.d8Q+ Kf7 8.Qc7+ Kf8 9.Rxb2 1-0 6.d7 a1B! Trying for stalemate. 6...axb1Q 7.d8Q Qf5 8.Qd4+ 1-0 7.d8N! This under-promotion to knight, with it‘s latent threat of mate on f7, is the resource that was lacking in the 3.d7 line. 7.d8Q? =; 7.d8B? Ba2 8.Bf6+ Kg8 9.Bxb2 Bxb1 = 7...Bb3 7...Bd5 8.Re1 Bc6 9.Nxc6 Kg8 10.Rf1 b1Q 11.Ne7+ Kh8 12.Rf8# All is now clear and mate comes quickly. 8.Re1 b1Q 8...Bxa4 9.Rf1 Kg8 10.Ne6 1-0; 8...Bf7 9.Nxf7+ Kg8 10.Nd6 1-0 9.Re8+ Bg8 10.Nf7#
Two rook sacrifices (2.Rb1!! being amazing) and two under-promotions, with Black also getting a chance to play well. A very worthy prize-winner. “Spectacular moves go off all over the board. A brilliant realisation of a mind-challenging concept.’, said the judge.
Further down the award is a sharp piece from two composers called Andrzej. It’s for you to solve, so why not have a go?
Andrzej Lewandowski & Andrzej Jasik
1st Comm., The Problemist, 2010-2011
White to play and win
1.Ba2+ Kd4 2.Rc4+ Kd5 2...Ke3 3.dxe7 Kd2 4.e8Q e1Q 5.Rc2+ Kxc2 6.Qxe1 1-0; 2...Ke5 3.dxe7 1-0 3.dxe7 Bb6+! Black tries for a stalemate trap. 3...Re3 4.Rc3+ Kd4 5.Rxe3 Kxe3 6.e8Q+ Kd3 7.Qxd7+ 1-0; 3...e1Q 4.Rc1+ Kd4 5.Rxe1 Re3 6.Rxe3 Kxe3 7.e8Q+ 1-0 4.Kxb6 e1Q 5.Re4+! 5.Rc1+? Rb3+! (5...Kd6? 6.Rxe1 Re3 7.Be6! Rxe1 8.e8Q Rxe6 9.Qf8+ 1-0) 6.Bxb3+ Kd6 7.Rxe1 = 5...Rb3+! 5...Kxe4 6.e8Q+ 1-0 6.Bxb3+ Kd6 7.e8N# 7.e8Q? Qb4+ 8.Ka7 (8.Rxb4=) 8...Qb6+ 9.Ka8 (9.Kxb6=) 9...Qa6+ 10.Kb8 Qb6+ =
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