Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday puzzle

White to play and mate in three moves.

(CH Wheeler)

Jonathan B said...

This is going to be one of those annoying puzzles that looks like it should be a piece of piss but in reality will take a while to solve.

I fear I'm going to lose a lot of my Sunday to this one.

Jonathan B said...

Well as it turned out it didn't take me that long at all.

Very cute.

Will comment my solution - and the path that took me to it - a little later.

A man hiding said...

Here's my solution:-

1st asked what would Agatha Christie do? 1. Kh3 probably. doesn't look very likely in this position though.

2nd decided I needed to cut the king-off so tried

1. Qe3

but quickly realised there was no mate in 2 after 1. ... Kf5.

3rd asked what would Aagaard do? Work out where he wanted to be then calcualate a route there probably ... so I tried to look at mating patterns that I could head for but couldn't see any.

4th - without concsiously thinking about it - I realised that

1. Qc5 would prevent the King getting to the e-file but also stop 1. ... Kf5.

5th decided that

1. ... Kg7
2. Qe7+ Kh6
3. Qg5 was mate.

It's not but I didn't realise that til later. What I did see that Black could play 2. ... Kh8 and there was no way to mate in one. In this round about way I realised I had to keep the black king out of the corner as well.

6th
Once I had that nugget of information it didn't take long to find.

1. Qc5 Kg7
2. Qh5 Kf8
3. Qf7 mate
or
2. ... Kf6
3. Qg5 mate

7th
it only left me to eliminate

1. ... Kf7 as a possibility
which was quite straight forward

2. Qf8 Kh7
3. Bb1 mate

That wraps it up doesn't it?

Jonathan B said...

Anonymous said...

This is very similar to the following problem (which I found in Solving In Style):

WKe4, Qb5, Ba5. BKc8

White to play and mate in 3.

ejh said...

7th
it only left me to eliminate

1. ... Kf7 as a possibility
which was quite straight forward

2. Qf8 Kh7
3. Bb1 mate

Eh?

ejh said...

5th decided that

1. ... Kg7
2. Qe7+ Kh6
3. Qg5 was mate.

It's not, which is why it's not 1.Qc5.

Jonathan B said...

2. Qf8 Kh7
3. Bb1 mate

The only King move that makes sense with this sequence (and the 5th step as outlined) is

1. ... Kg6

Jonathan B said...

It's not, which is why it's not 1.Qc5.

Justin,

1. Qc5 mates in 3 as far as I can see.

ejh said...

I apologise, my mind was elsewhere when I wrote the above posting. Yes, of course it is 1.Qc5, just not for the reason given - there's a flight square on h7!

I thought 1.Kg4 might be a cook, but I think 1....Kg6 keeps out of White's clutches for long enough.

Jonathan B said...

This is very similar to the following problem (which I found in Solving In Style):

WKe4, Qb5, Ba5. BKc8

White to play and mate in 3.

Thanks v. much Jack - that's an even better one I think.

Took me much longer. Couldn't get the key idea. Tried loads of stuff but while everything seemed to almost work (close enough to keep me following false trails) nothing quite did.

Then I gave up and was just about to post that duffer question "Is this the right position?" but I wanted to just double check if there were any other ideas I hadn't looked at yet.

Strange but as soon as I gave up trying I saw the solution instantly!

PS: and now I've got to the end (finally) I can see why this reminded you of EJH's puzzle.

THanks for posting it.

ejh said...

Funny enough I've got Solving In Style but I didn't see any puzzles in it (this one's another from Leonard Barden's Chess Puzzle Book) that seemed suitable. I should look more carefully.