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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

The “big guys” miss great moves, too. In this game between Psakhis and Sygulski in 1987 found them in this position. Psakhis played 14.Bd3 and eventually won. How could he have earned a brilliancy prize here?

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

This is yet another chess summer school Monday. Let’s consider it an advanced lesson in terms of the difficulty of the problem for beginners, but let’s also consider it an early lesson on thinking about a chess position. I have often pointed out the need on every move for players to look at all checks, captures and forced moves—for your ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Today’s puzzle is taken from a new book put out by Russell Enterprises: My First Book of Chess Tactics by David MacEnulty. MacEnulty has won all sorts of awards for his chess teaching and even had a movie based on his efforts with kids in inner city schools. So, this is a welcomed and practical book for those starting out in chess. He covers ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Today’s puzzle is taken from a supposed blitz game between Lasker and Capablanca. I’ve seen two versions of who had White! Anyhow, it’s a fun “to play and win” position.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

This is one of those famous positions in chess history. Dr. Emanuel Lasker, who had held the world throne for 27 years until 1921, has just played 24…Qb5, which wins in every variation except one—the one his opponent Carlos Torre found.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Some of you may recognize this position from the Fischer-Spassky return match in 1992. Can you match Fischer’s mating continuation here? Remember: don’t just give the quickie Black cooperating mating line.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Today is our “summer school” day for those new to chess. Tactics are very important in chess. You have to see the dance steps that are possible in order to do the dance properly. The best advice we have often given here is to look at all check and captures. All. Even your opponent’s. When you try to think ahead, see if you can keep those ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

We’re going to look at another entry from the vastly entertaining and instructive book “Draw” by Leonid Verkhovsky. It’s published by Russell Enterprises as a translation of the original from the 1970s. Why is that important? Well, there is a foreword by Mikhail Tal. You don’t need to be Tal to figure out that White is in dire ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Although we do mostly “play and win” positions, it’s good to remember that sometimes chess players in dire straits have to try and salvage a draw. Osmanagic was in such a fix against Grandmaster S. Gligoric in Yugoslavia in 1963.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Even if you’re relatively new to chess, someone may have shown you a position similar to this where 1.Bxh7+ followed by 2.Ng5+ leads to mate after 3.Qh5, but does that work here?

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

We looked at one type of Bxh7+ sacrifice with a follow-up of Ng5+. Here’s another type of bishop sacrifice from the game Toth-Szigeti, Budapest, 1946. Can you see it all the way through to the mate or win of a lot of material?

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Most of you are familiar with the famous Bxh7+ sacrifice followed by Ng5+, and, if the king goes to g8, you get a mate in a few moves after White moves the queen up to h5. HOWEVER, if you meet this set-up over the board, oftentimes it’s a little tricky to figure out what to do if the king does not humbly go to g8, but, rather, goes boldly to ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

In doing our Monday Summer School lesson, we look at the benefits for the attacker when the opponent’s castled position is broken up. In the diagram we see that the g7 pawn probably captured on f6 and then moved to f5 to block the dangerous light squared White bishop. Notice also the nice little nesting place for the White queen. One last ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

It doesn’t take much imagination to figure out that White will double his rooks on the eighth rank to threaten mate. It also doesn’t take much to figure out Black will move his queen to allow the king to escape to g6. The question is: what then?

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

We’re continuing our advance start on “chess summer school.” One of the important things to do in teaching beginners is to show them mating patterns. This often involves sacrifices, so it expands their minds in terms of possibilities to look for. We always reinforce the idea of lok at ALL checks and captures. This example is an old favorite.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

We’re continuing our advance start on “chess summer school.” If you look at the first two lessons, we see that the Opposition is critical to understanding king and pawn endings. What we have here is yet another. Set up this position for your student and have them play to win.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

We’re continuing our advance start on “chess summer school.” One of the best ways to demonstrate to beginners just how subtle chess can be with a few pieces on the board is to do king and pawn endings. They can be tricky. Our previous one showed how important opposition is and how one mistake can end the game in stalemate. Today’s is a ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

When my sons were little, I used to have morning “Dad’s summer school” lessons on just about anything during the long break. It meant they wouldn’t camp out in front of the TV set to start their day. As the end of the school year coming upon us, I’m going to start with some basic lessons for this week and then do one every Monday. If ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

Years ago, I set up this problem for a group of young beginners with the question, “What is your best move here?” They had been told to always look for all checks and captures, so they went at it. Nobody found the right answer! I’ve used my little construction for many years now with beginners with the same result, yet I keep doing it ...

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

This is a very fluid position with lots of possibilities for moves for both sides, yet in Karaklaic-Nedeljkovic, Yugoslavia, 1957, White ended this game with a forced mate.

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