## Sunday, November 11, 2012

### We do not always need brute force to win

In a Greek blog we saw a comment about pawn promotion, where it seems that subpromotion is not important: "...we promote almost always to Queen. ... The promotion to another piece has no meaning, because their moves is a subset of the Queen moves."

We have repeaterly given examples where we do not win by getting more power, but by getting the proper piece. In the theme AUW (=Allumwandlung, all the promotions) especially, we have seen many compositions where all the promotions occur in one variation or in more variations during the solutions.

Remember something that Darwin said, that "in life survives not the strongest species, nor the more clever, but the most adaptive to its environment."

We will see here four miniature compositions by Nikos Pergialis, where the white pawns start from their initial positions and reach a promotion square (this is the theme Excelsior), and they must be promoted to a different piece in each problem to satisfy the stipulation, helpmate in six moves. In some compositions we have Double Excelsior, where pawns of both colors are promoted.

 Problem-621 Nikos Pergialis original 7K/1p6/7k/7p/8/8/2P5/8 (2+3) h#6 1.b5 c4 2.b4 c5 3.b3 c6 4.b2 c7 5.b1=B c8=Q [Promotion to Queen] 6.Bg6 Qc1# Theme double Excelsior, Ideal mate. The last rebetis (remember rebetiko songs) Nikos Pergialis comments with verses :  "Kapra'los, Za'ppas, Manolas' / (Kapralos, Zappas, Manolas)  ke Fougiaxis', Siape'ras / (and Fougiaxis, Siaperas)  na fe'rno, me simvou'lepsan, / (to bring, they advised me,)  ta di'skola is pe'ras. / (the difficult to completion.)" Problem-622 Nikos Pergialis original 8/2s5/S1K5/8/8/8/3Pk3/8  (3+2) h#6 1.Kd1 d4 2.Kc2 d5 3.Kb3 d6 4.Ka4 dxc7 5.Ka5 c8=R [Promotion to Rook] 6.Kxa6 Ra8# Theme Excelsior, Royal march, Ideal mate. Problem-623 Nikos Pergialis original 8/p7/6s1/5pkp/8/6K1/3P4/8 (2+5) h#6 1.a5 d4 2.a4 d5 3.a3 d6 4.a2 d7 5.a1=B d8=S [Promotion to Knight] 6.Bf6 Sf7# Theme double Excelsior, Ideal mate. Problem-624 Nikos Pergialis original 1k6/8/8/8/8/8/6BP/5K2 (3+1) h#6 1.Kc7 h4 2.Kd6 h5 3.Ke5 h6 4.Kf4 h7 5.Kg3 h8=B [Promotion to Bishop] 6.Kh2 Be5# Weningsteiner, Royal march, Theme Excelsior, Ideal mate. The last rebetis Nikos Pergialis says :  "San den dre'pome ego' liga'ki / (I should be a little ashamed)  na me katafe'ri e'na piona'ki / (to allow to a little pawn)  na me ho'si sto tetragona'ki / (to squeeze me to a little square)  na mou ka'ni idaniko' mata'ki. / (to make on me a little ideal mate.)  As afi'soume lipon' to ska'ki / (Let us leave now the chess)  ke na poume e'na tragouda'ki! / (and sing a little song!)"