Friday, December 07, 2007

Knight to the rescue - the answer

Wednesday's position was taken from a correspondence game Horton-Townsend, IECG 2007, concluded earlier this week.

The answer was that the move 1...Ng5+ - 41...Ng5+, in the actual game - does not, in fact, save Black. My opponent thought it might: so did I, at first, which is why I had intended 40.Qe3 (which also wins) rather than 40.Qd6 as played.

The remarkable reason (which may or may not have been given in Wednesday's comments box by now - I'm on holiday in the Basque Country and prepared this posting in advance) occurs in the position after 40...Nf7 41.Qe7 Ng5+ 42.Kg4 Nxe6 43.fxe6! Rxf4+

Now, although any capture leads to a draw by perpetual check (beginning 44.Kxf4 Qd4+ or 44.gxf4 Qg2+) 44.Kh3!!! is an extraordinary winning move: see the game below or, better, work out the variations yourself first.

(I was particularly pleased with the win: I've now gone ten games without defeat in competitive email play and may be close to winning a tournament outright for the very first time. After something like eight years of trying.)

1 comment:

Tom Chivers said...


By curious coincidence, I also just won an internet game where I sacrificed a rook for promoting pawns: Spaceman-Ihaveagirlfriend,

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qc2 O-O 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 d5 7. Bg5 Nbd7 8. cxd5 exd5 9. e3 h6 10. Bh4 c5 11. Nf3 Re8 12. Be2 c4 13. O-O a6 14. a4 b6 15. Rfe1 Rb8 16. Ne5 Nxe5 17. dxe5 Rxe5 18. Bg3 Qe7 19. Bxe5 Qxe5 20. Bf3 Bf5 21. Qd2 Bd3 22. Be2 Ne4 23. Qb2 Nc5 24. Bf3 Bf5 25. Red1 Nd3 26. Qd2 b5 27. axb5 axb5 28. Ra5 b4 29. Rxd5 Qxc3 30. Rxf5 Qxd2 31. Rxd2 b3 32. Bd5 b2 33. Bxf7+ Kh7 34. Rxb2 Rxb2 35. g3 c3 36. Ra5 c2 37. Ra1 Rb1+ 38.
Rxb1 cxb1=Q+, 0-1.

Not in the same league though, it has to be said!