Monday, January 28, 2013

ISC-9, Compositions solved and some results

Results from Athens, Greece :

First group, 60 points maximum :
1) Vaggelis Petridis, 17 points,
2) Harry Fougiaxis, 16,5
3) Emmanuel Manolas, 16,5
4) Leocratis Anemodouras, 7,5
5) Dimitrios Efthimakis, 4

Second group, 40 points maximum :
1) Dionissis Hassalevris
2) Panagiotis Papantoniou

See here the results from Patra, Greece.

12 Problems for the first group

David Shire, Christopher Reeves, Marjan Kovačević,
Original for The Problemist 2013 (version for 9. ISC)
3R2b1/BpP1K1p1/4ppp1/1s1Pk3/4S3/2p5/2BQ3b/2S1rRsr (10 + 13)
Tries : {1.Sg5? [2.Sd3#] Sxa7 / Sd6 / Rxf1,Rxc1,Re3 2.Qxc3# / Qd4# / Qe3#, 1… Sf3 / Bf4 2.Sxf3# / Qxf4#, 1… b6!}, {1.Sc5? [2.Sd7#] Sd4 2.S1d3#, 1… cxd2!}, {1.Sd6? [2.Sc4#] exd5 / Sa3,Sxd6 2.Sd3# / Qd4 #, 1... Re4!}

Key: 1. Sf2! (5) [2.Sg4#] f5 / Re4 2.Scd3# / Sfd3#

Shows auto-blocks and contains theme Somov B2.

A.N. Pankratiew, V.N.Rychkow, Yourij Marker,
The Problemist 1990
8/3pR3/3p4/R2p4/p1kB1S1Q/P3sBs1/KP6/2b2r2 (9 + 9)
Tries : {1.Rxa4+? Kb5!}, {1.Be2+? Sxe2!}, {1.Rc5+? dxc5!}, {1.Bxd5+? Sxd5!}, {1.b3+? axb3+!}

Key : 1. Qh3! [2.Rxa4+ (1) Kb5 3.Qxd7#]
1… Sg4,Sef5 2.Be2+ (1,5) Sxe2 / Kxd4 3. Qd3# / Rxd5 #
1… Sgf5 2.Bxd5+ (1,5) Sxd5 / Kxd4 3.Qd3# / Re4 #
1… Kxd4 2.Qh8+ (1) Kc4 3.Qc3 #

Heinz Gfeller,
Schweizerische Schachzeitung 1966 (dedicated to K. Flatt)
r1b3B1/p1Pp4/kp1P4/1R6/P2p4/3P4/7K/4B3 (8 + 7)
Tries : {1.Ra5+? bxa5!}, {1.Bd5? / Ba5? / Bb4? Bb7!}

Key : 1.Bc4! Kb7 2.Ba5 Kc6,Ka6 3.Bb4 Kb7 4.Bd5+ Ka6 5.Ra5+ bxa5 6.Bc5 (5)
1… … 2… a6? 3.Rxb6 Ka7 4.Bd5 Rb8 / Bb7 5.cxb8=Q# / Rxb7#

Contains theme Kozhakin (First and last White move on the same square).

Martin Minski,
Original for Magyar Sakkvilag 2013
3r4/4p3/kpK5/S7/PP6/2P5/8/8 (5 + 4)
+ (White wins)
1.Kc7 (1) Rd5 (i) 2.c4 (1) (ii) Rxa5 3.b5+ (1) (iii) Ka7 (iv) 4.c5 (1) Ra6 (v) 5.a5 (1) bxa5/bxc5 6.b6+ +-

(i) 1…Rh8 2.Sc6 b5 3.c4 +-, 1… Rd6 2.Sc6 b5 3.Sb8+ Ka7 4.axb5 +-
1…Rb8 2.Kxb8 bxa5 3.Kc7! axb4 4.cxb4 +-
(ii) 2.Sc6? b5! 3.c4 bxc4 4.b5+ Rxb5 5.axb5+ Kxb5 =
(iii) 3.bxa5? Kxa5 =
(iv) 3...Rxb5 4.axb5+ Ka5 5.c5! bxc5 6.b6 c4 7.b7 c3 8.c8=Q +-
(v) 4…Rxb5 5.axb5 bxc5 6.b6+ +-, 4…bxc5 5.b6+ Ka6 6.b7 +-

Jozsef Pogats,
idee und form 1996
8/1p6/p4b2/r3k3/8/p3K1pp/4P1bq/1s2sB2 (3 + 12)
h#4, 4 solutions
I) 1. Sd2 Kxd2 2. Ke4 e3 3. Rf5 Bxa6 4. Be5 Bxb7 #
II) 1. Sd3 exd3 2. Rd5 Be2 3. Rd6 Bg4 4. Bd5 d4 #
III) 1. Sf3 Kd3 2. Kf4 Bxg2 3. Rg5 Bxh3 4. Be5 e3 #
IV) 1. Bf3 exf3 2. Qc2 Bb5 3. Qg6 f4+ 4. Kf5 Bc6 #
[ 1 solution=1 point, 2 s=2,5 p, 3 s=4 p, 4 s=5 p ]

The Black King is mated on e5, f4 by the Pawn and on e4, f5 by the Bishop. There are preventive auto-blocks, Orthogonal - Diagonal Transformation and Model Mates.

Waldemar Tura,
The Problemist 1985, 2nd Prize
5B2/1BQ1S3/R1p1P3/1rk2S1R/sp1pP3/s2Kp3/pqr1P3/bb6 (11 + 13)
Tries (besides the 16 checking moves which result in undesirable mating of Black) : {1.Qb6+? Sxb6!}, {1.Ra8? Sc4!}, {1.Qg3? / Qf4? / Qb8? / Bc8? / Rg5? Qc1!}

Key : 1.Qh2! [2.Sg3+ Kd6 3.Rxc6+ (1) Rxc6#]
1…Rb6 2.Sd5+ Kb5 3.Sxd4+ (1,5) Qxd4#
1…b3 2.Sd6+ Kb4 3.Sxc6+ (1,5) Rxc6#
1…Sc3,Sb6 2.Sxd4+ Sd5 3.Sb3+ (1) Qxb3#

White and Black batteries in action.

Života Tanić,
Die Schwalbe 1973, 1st Prize
5RB1/8/sR1S2p1/2s1k1pr/r2pS1P1/1p3p1p/3Q1P1K/B7 (10 + 11)
Tries : {1.Sc3? d3!}, {1.Sxc5? Sxc5!}, {1.Sxg5? Se6!}, {1.Sc4+?  Rxc4!}, {1.Rb5? Sc7!}, {1.Rf5+? gxf5!}, {1.Re8+? Se6!}, {1.Qe1? Sd3!}, {1.Qe3? b2!}, {1.Qxd4+? / Bxd4+? Rxd4!}, {1.Qf4+? gxf4!}, {1.Qxg5+? Rxg5!}

Key : 1.Sf6! (5) [2.Sf7#] Se6 / Rh7 2.Qe3# / Qxg5#

We see Levman defense : (The control of a square x of the black King field by a white piece is removed by the threat (which is not made by this piece). This is possible because a third white piece controls x (this control exists only after the threat). Black defends by removing this third control.). Here the control of f6 by the Rf8 is removed with the threat Sf7 because Rb6 can control then the f6. So, Black plays Se6.
There is also theme Option, where at least two tries (with different defenses) and the key are performed with the same piece.

Carel Sammelius,
Tidskrift for Schack 1955, 2nd Hon. Mention
7r/3P4/2R4Q/P2BsPB1/p1Pk2PR/2pp2S1/8/2S3bK (13 + 7)
Tries : {1.Be3+? Bxe3!}, {1.Sce2+? / Sge2+? dxe2!}, {1.Sb3+? axb3!}, {1.d8=Q? Rxd8!}, {1.Bf6? Rxh6!}, {1.Be7? / Bd8? c2!}

Key : 1.Rh3! [2.Sce2+,Sge2+ (0,5) fxe2 3.Sxe2#]
1...Se~ 2.Bf6+ (1) Se5 3.Qf4#
1...Sxd7 2.Qg7+ (1) Se5 3.Qa7#
1...Sxc6 2.Qf6+ (1) Se5,Kc5 3.Qb6#
1...Sxg4 2.Qxh8+ (1) Se5 3.Rh4#
1...Sxc4 2.Rxc4+ (0,5) Kxd5 3.Qe6#

We see swithbacks of bS and wR, reciprocal captures, self-blocks, direct and indirect pins.

Jakov Vladimirow,
Vetchernij Leningrad 1988, 1st Prize
6S1/3pb2p/2p2p2/1PP1kq2/4pp1S/2P1RQB1/B6s/3K4 (10 + 10)
Tries : {1.Qxe4+? / Rxe4+? Qxe4!}, {1.Qxf4+? / Bxf4+? Qxf4!}, {1.Qg4? Qxg4+!}, {1.Qh5? Qxh5+!}, {1.Sg6+? hxg6!}, {1.Sxe7? / Bxh2? / Sh6? d5!}

Key : 1.Bf7! Zugzwang
1...cxb5 2.Rxe4+ Qxe4 3.Bxf4+ (1) Qxf4 4.Qd5#
1... Bf8 / Bd6 / Bxc5 2.Bxf4+ Qxf4 3.Rxe4+ (1) Qxe4 4.Qxf6#
1... Sf1 2. Qxe4+ Qxe4 3. Sf3+ (1) Kf5 4. Sh6#
1… Sg4 2. Qxf4+ Qxf4 3. Sf3+ (1) Kf5 4. Sxe7 #
1… d6,Bd8 2. Bxh2 ~ 3. Sxf5 (1)

Reciprocal captures, Orthogonal - Diagonal Transformation, White sacrifices.

Alexander Herbstman,
Spartak 1962, 2nd Price
R7/B7/2K5/3R4/8/5b1p/7r/k7 (4 + 4)
+ (White wins)
1.Bd4+ Kb1 2.Ra1+ Kc2 3.Ra2+ (1) Kd3 4.Ra3+ (1) (i) Ke2 5.Re3+ Kf2 6.Re4+ Kf1 7.Rf5 (1) Rf2 8.Kd6 (1) h2 9.Rh4 (1) +-

(i) 4.Rxh2 Bxd5+ 5.Kd5 = /Kc5 Bg2 =

Christopher Jones,
Original for ISC 2013
4B3/3bp3/2p1k3/2P1rq2/1pP5/b1sp1p2/1sR2P2/2K5 (6 + 12)
h#3, 2 solutions
1.Sd5 cxd5+ 2.cxd5 c6 3.Bxc6 Rxc6# (2,5)
1.Re3 fxe3 2.f2 Rxf2 3.e5 Bf7# (2,5)

Self-blocks, Black sacrifices.

Peter Kniest,
feenschach 1981
6B1/3Q3s/3R4/4k1P1/7R/3pBp2/3SpS2/4K3 (9 + 5)
Tries (besides the 11 checking moves which result in undesirable mating of Black) : {1.Re6+? / Qe7+? Kf5!}, {1.Qb5+? / Qxh7? Kxd6!}, {1.Rdh6? / Ra6? / Rb6? / Rc6? / Rg6? / g6? / Ba2? / Bb3? / Be6? / Bf7? Sf8!}

Key : 1.Rf6! Sxg5 2.Rh5 Kxf6 3.Rh6+ Ke5 4.Sxf3+ (1,5) Sxf3#
1...Sf8 2.Qe7+ Se6 3.Qc5+ Sxc5 4.Sxd3+ (1,5) Sxd3#
1...Sxf6 2.Sg4+ Sxg4 3.Sc4+ Ke4 4.Bd2 (2) f2#

Sacrificial key, model mates.

8 Problems for the second group

Arieh Grinblat,
Probleemblad 1989, 149 TT, 1st Prize
3SB1s1/rb6/pp1pPpS1/1p1k3s/3B4/1Pp1KP2/8/Q7 (9 + 11)
Tries : {1.Sf4+? Sxf4!}, {1.Se7+? Sxe7!}, {1.Bxb6? Sf4!}, {1.Bxb5? axb5!}, {1.Bc6+? Bxc6!}, {1.Bf7? Bc8!}, {1.Qb1? / Qd1? c2!}, {1.Qa2? b4!}, {1.Qxa6? Rxa6!}, {1.b4? Kc4!}, {1.f4? Sg3!}, {1.e7? Sh6!}

Key : 1.Qh1! (5) [2.f4#] Sg3,Sf4 2.Sf4#

Theme Laitinen : (White threatens of a chechmate by battery of Pawn. The Blacks defends playing on the square where the Pawn threatens to move.).

Herbert Kuechler,
Schach 1961, 2nd Prize
6S1/B1Q5/8/4RbPr/3b1ksR/5P2/6K1/8 (8 + 5)
Tries : {1.Bxd4? Rxh4!}, {1.Rxg4+? Bxg4!}, {1.Re1+? / Re2+? / Re4+? Kxg5!}, {1.Ra5+? / Rb5+? / Rd5+? Ke3!}, {1.Re6+? / Re7+? / Re8+? / Qc1+? Kxg5!}

Key : 1.Qf7! (5) [2.Qxf5#]
1...Rxg5 2.Re4 #
1...Bxe5 2.Rxg4 #
1...Kxe5 2.Bb8 #
1...Kxg5 2.Rxg4 #

Self-block, pin mate.

Martin Minski,
Original for Šachová skladba 2013
5k2/S1S1pp2/7K/q1P5/8/2R5/b5P1/4B3 (7 + 5)
+ (White wins)
1.Se6+ (2) (i) Bxe6 (ii) 2.Rd3 (1) Qc7 3.Bg3 (1) Qa5 4.Sc6 Q~ 5.Rd8+ (1) +-

(i) 1.Rd3? Qxc7 2. Bg3 e5! =
(ii) 1… fxe6 2. Rf3+ +-

Pseudo-sacrifice of the white Knight.

Carel Sammelius,
Probleemblad 1973, 3rd Hon. Mention
8/8/4S3/4R3/1B2b1pr/2s1kP2/p3P1Rp/rs2Q2K (8 + 9)
Tries : {1.Rxe4+? Sxe4!}, {1.Qc1+? Sd2!}, {1.Qf2+? Kd2!}, {1.Qxc3+? Sxc3+!}, {1.fxg4? Rxg4!}

Key : 1.f4! [2.Qxc3+ (0,5) Sxc3#]
1...Sc~ 2.Qd2+ (0,5) Sxd2#
1...Sa3 2.Qc1+ (1) Rxc1#
1...Sd2 2.Qg1+ (1) Rxg1#,hxg1=~#
1...Sxe2 2.Qg3+ (1) Sxg3#
1...Sd1 2.Qf2+ (1) Sxf2#

Theme Cristoffanini (Black pins the threatening white piece which mates nevertheless). Move Pelle (of a pinned piece), white sacrifice, recoprocal captures, masked black battery, pin mate.

Hrvoje Bartolovic,
Suomen Shakki 1991, 2nd Prize
6q1/1pSS1p2/P3P1p1/6P1/p1pk1p2/8/1RBP4/KQR5 (11 + 8)
Tries : {1. Bd3? / Be4? / Bf5? / Bxg6? b5! / bxa6! / exf5! / Qxg6!}
{1. Rb4? / Rb5? / Rb6? / Rxb7 / Ra2? a3! / fxe6! / Qf8! / Qf8! / b5!}
{1. Re1? / Rf1? f5! / f3!}

Key : 1.Rh1! (5) [2.Qg1#] f3 / c3 2.Rh4# / Rb4#

Theme Bristol. Theme Option.

Yosi Retter,
TT Denmark 1988/89, 1st Prize
8/2S5/3s4/2p1r3/2B2R2/B1k1Pb2/2Ps4/1RK3S1 (9 + 6)
Tries : {1.Se2+? Bxe2!}, {1.Sb5+? Sxb5!}, {1.Sd5+? Rxd5!}, {1.Bb2+? Kb4!}, {1.Bb4+? cxb4!}, {1.Ba2? S2e4!}, {1.Ba6? S6e4!}, {1.Bf1? / Be2? Be4!}, {1.Bd5? / Be6? / Bf7? / Bg8? Re4!}, {1.Rb3+? Sxb3+!}

Key : 1.Bd3! (5) [2.Bb2#]
1...Re4 / S2e4 / S6e4 / Be4 2.Sd5# / Rb3# / Sb5# / Se2#

Theme Elmgren (All black pieces refute a Try). Theme Anti-Somov A1.

Schachmatnoje ob. 1903
Q7/8/4P3/1p6/p1B2P2/2B3Pp/1P5K/krbR4 (9 + 6)
Tries : {1.Qxa4+? bxa4!}, {1.Rxc1? Rxc1!}, {1.Qf8? / Bxb5? Rxb2+!}, {1.Re1? / Rh1? Bd2!}, {1.b4+? Bb2!}, {1.Bf6? / Bg7? Bxb2!}

Key : 1.Bh8! Zugzwang
1…Bxb2 2.Rh1 (2)
1…Rxb2+ 2.Qg2 (2)
1… Bd2,Be3,Bxf4 2.b4+ (1)

Theme Grab, with multiple application. Bicolour Bristol, reciprocal captures, model mates.

Valerio Agostini,
harmonie 2010, 6th Hon. Mention
2BR3B/3K4/2P5/R3q3/4kr2/2b1r3/8/8 (6 + 5)
h#2, 2 solutions
I) 1.Kd4 Ba6 2.Rfe4 Kc8# (2,5)
II) 1.Kf5 Rg8 2.Ree4 Kd8# (2,5)

Orthogonal - Diagonal transformation, White royal battery, indirect self-pin, pin mate, self-block.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Nine direct two-movers

The orthodox directmate compositions of a few moves are very helpful to chess players, learning to find the mate in a given position.
Today we publish nine two-movers by the known composer Nikos Pergialis. And when we say composer, let us not forget that he is the Last Rebetis (=Composer of Rebetiko songs)!
In two of the compositions there is a co-author, the good chess-player Manos Pantavos.

You will see the problems and you will try to find the mating nets, but most of the times the compositions contain, besides the unique way to find the mate, an inner beauty. In the solutions we write about the Themes that are hidden in these problems.

Nikos Pergialis and Manos Pantavos
8/8/b1r1p3/Q7/2k2S2/2p2S2/2K5/8 (4 + 5)
Set Play (if it was Black's turn to play) :
1...Bb5 [a] 2.Qxc3# [A]
1...Rc5 [b] 2.Qa4# [B]

Tries (with try-moves those moves that gave mate in the set play)
{1.Qxc3+? [A] Kb5!},
{1.Qa4+? [B] Kc5!}
Try (with a threat now, a move that gave mate in the set play)
{1.Sd4? [2.Qxc3# [A] ] Kxd4!}
Tries (various, making the discovering of the key more difficult)
{1.Se5+? Kd4!}, {1.Sg2? [2.Se3#] Bb5!}, {1.Qb4+? Kxb4!}
Try (thematic, with Black defenses like the ones of the set play, but different mates)
{1.Qb6? [2.Se5#]
1...Bb5 [a] 2.Qd4# [C]
1...Rc5 [b] 2.Qb3# [D]
but 1...Rxb6!}

Key: 1.Sd3! [2.Sde5#] (where, in the same Black defenses, the mates are changed again)
1...Bb5 [a] 2.Qa2# [E]
1...Rc5 [b] 2.Qxc5# [F]

The problem is a Zagoruyko 3x2 (in 3 phases, for the same 2 defenses, we have changed mates).

Nikos Pergialis and Manos Pantavos
2R5/2K2B2/8/2k5/3S3r/PP2Bs2/1q1r1SR1/8 (9 + 5)
Set play :
1...Se1 / Sg1 / Sh2 / Sxd4 / Sg5 2.R(x)g5#
1...Rc2 / Re2 / Rd3 2.S(x)d3#
1...Rh1 / Rh2 / Rh3 / Re4 / Rh5 / Rh6 / Rh7 / Rh8 2.S(x)e4#
1...Qa1 / Qc1 / Qa2 / Qc2 2.b4#

Key : 1.Rb8! [2.Rb5#]
1...Sxd4 2.Rg5#
1...Rdxd4 2.Sd3#
1...Rhxd4 2.Se4#
1...Qxd4 2.b4#
1...Qxb3 2.Sxb3#

The composer Nikos Pergialis writes a verse (translated here) :
"Little Nikos, Little Manos
we are dealing four times with pins,
and as it seems,
we have transferred mates".

We see theme Zilahi (the wSd4 in one variation is captured, while in another variation it gives mate), multiple Black defenses on the same square d4 with multiple captures of the white Knight, tranferred mates, cross-captures (bQb2 and wSd4), direct self-block and pin-mate.

Nikos Pergialis
8/3spS2/2s2p2/3R4/2b1k3/1SK3Q1/8/3R4 (6 + 6)
Key: 1.Rh5! [2.Sd2#]
1...Sce5 2.Rd4#
1...Sde5 2.Sc5#
1...e5 2.Sd6#
1...f5 2.Sg5#
1...Bxb3 2.Re1# (Rare mirror-mate, with all bK flights empty).

There are multiple defenses with blocking of e5.
We see the theme Anti-Somov A1 (The control of a square x of the black King field by a white piece is removed by the threat (which is not made by this piece). This is possible because a third white piece controls x (this control exists before the threat). Black defends by removing this third control.). Here d5 is controlled by wRh5, thus we can remove the controlling by the third piece wRd1 when threating Sb3-d2.
We also see the theme Somov B (The control of a square x of the black King field by a white piece is removed by the mating move (which is not made by this piece). This is possible because the previous black move has blocked x.). Here f5 is controlled by wRh5, but when it blocked by the black Pawn, then the wSf7 can close the line of wRh5.
When the two themes, Somov and anti-Somov, coexist we say there is the Theme Isaev.

Nikos Pergialis
1b2B1R1/3S4/8/2S2k2/5r2/3P1bP1/3K1R2/8 (8 + 4)
Tries : {1.Rxf3? [2.g4#] Rxf3!}, {1.Rg5+? Kxg5!}

Key : 1.Bf7! [2.Be6#]
1...Bd5 2.g4#
1...Re4 2.dxe4#

We see the half-pinned bRf4 and bBf3, and the pin-mates.
Comment by the Last Rebetis, Nikos Pergialis :
"Two little pawns for their first time
achieve mate the little rascals
(I mean, in this theme,
Emmanuel my good friend)".

Nikos Pergialis
8/S5b1/2P1p3/2r1k3/5RKB/8/b7/2SR4 (7 + 5)
Key: 1.Be7! [2.Bd6#]
1…Bf8 2.Bf6#
1…Bd5 2.Sd3#
1…Rd5 2.Re1#
1…Rxc6 2.Sxc6#

In the self-block with Bd5 or Rd5, the mates are different and this is called anti-Dual.
There is also theme Somov B (when the Black Bishop blocks e5, the white Knight can close the line of the white Rook d1).

Νίκος Περγιάλης
8/3K2s1/Rp6/S1k3S1/1pPp4/6s1/8/2B5 (6 + 6)
In the set play we see full block, that is if was Black's turn to play every move would lead to mate directly :
1...S3~ 2.S(x)e4#
1...S7~ 2.S(x)e6#
1...b3 2.Ba3#
1...d3 2.Be3#
1...b5 / bxa5 2.Rc6#

There two tries holding the full block : {1.Bb2? d3!}, {1.Bd2? b3!}

Key : 1.Bf4! [2.Βd6#] (White abandons the full block and begins with a threat)
1...Se4 2.Sxe4#
1...S3f5 2.Se4#
1...S7f5 2.Se6#
1...Se8 2.Se6#
1...d3 2.Be3#
1...bxa5 2.Rc6#

Comment by the composer : "This unsignificant theme-idea is, in my opinion, one of the more difficult orthodox problems, because we must have a block in the set play and a threat in the solution. The pieces are positioned ideally, because White should not have a waiting move. If the wK moves to c7 (to keep controlling c6), it is exposed to check (bSe8+), and if the rest white pieces move, the block breaks and flights are created.
The problem can become a waiter, with moving all pieces one file to the right, with key 1.Ra6!"

Nikos Pergialis
8/5p2/5P1p/4pP1k/4S1b1/6K1/7P/5Q2 (6 + 5)
In the set play, with full block, all the Black moves are answered with direct mate :
1...Bd1 2.Qxd1# / Qh3#
1...Be2 2.Qxe2# / Qh3#
1...Bf3 2.Qxf3# / Qh3#
1...Bh3 2.Qxh3#
1...Bxf5 2.Qxf5#

There are tries keeping the full block : {1.Qg2? Bxf5!}, {1.h4? Bh3!},
and a try with threat : {1.Qc4? [2.Qxf7#] Bxf5!}.

Key : 1.h3! [2.hxg4#]
1...Bd1 2.Qxd1#
1...Be2 2.Qxe2#
1...Bf3 2.Qxf3#
1...Bxh3 2.Qxh3#
1...Bxf5 2.Qxf5#

The initial full block is transformed to a threat (Block-Threat problem). In the duel between bB and wQ the winner is the wQ  grabbing the opponent bB (theme Grab, if it happens more than two times), no matter how bB corrects his destination square (Black correction).

Nikos Pergialis
7b/3R3r/1K4B1/1S6/k6B/8/P7/sR1S4 (8 + 4)
In the set play there are some prepared mates :
1...Bc3 2.Sdxc3#
1...Sc2 2.Bxc2#
1...Bd4+ 2.Rxd4#
1...Rxh4 / Bg7 / Rh5 / Rh6 2.Ra7#
1...Rg7 2.Sdc3# / Rd4#

Tries : {1.Sdc3+? [A] Bxc3! [b] }, {1.Rd4+? [B] Bxd4+! [b] }, {1.Rb4+? Kxb4!}, {1.Ra7+? Rxa7!}, {1.Be7? [2.Rb4# / Ra7#] Rxe7!}.

Key : 1.Be1! [2.Rb4#]
1...Bc3 [a] 2.Sdxc3# [A]
1...Sc2 2.Bxc2#
1...Bd4+ [b] 2.Rxd4# [B]
1...Rh4 2.Ra7#
1...Sb3 2.axb3#
1...Bb2 2.Sxb2#

Theme Vladimirov : Two tries (A and B) are parried by the Black defenses (a and b). After the key, the defenses (a and b) allow the mates (A and B).
The black move 1...Sb3 corrects 1...Sc2 (black correction), without success.

Nikos Pergialis
B7/B7/8/6R1/2r1S2K/4p2S/1R6/4r2k (7 + 4)

Tries  : {1.Rh2+? Kxh2!}, {1.Rg1+? Rxg1!}, {1.Kg3? [2.Sef2# / Rh2#] Rg1+!}.

Key : 1.Bb8! [2.Rh2#]
1...Re2 2.Rg1#
1...Rc2 2.Sef2#
1...Rxe4+ 2.Bxe4#
1...Rc7 2.Sg3#
1…e2 2.Shf2#

Monday, January 14, 2013

Allumwandlung and Transmuted Kings

An interesting theme in chess composition is "All the Promotions" or "Allumwandlung" (AUW, from the German). We have presented many AUW problems. A pawn is promoted in the OTB chess, in four ways (to Queen, to Rook, to Knight, to Bishop). In fairy chess, where more pieces can be used, the promotions may be more than four, as we saw in the brilliant Problem-241.

The Kings have no great mobility in the OTB chess. For this reason, various conditions are invented to make them more active. We saw the condition of Transmuted Kings when presenting the Problem-269. We repeat the definition here :
When the Transmuted Kings are threatened by a piece, they move and capture in a way similar with the movement of the threatening piece. (If the wK is threatened by a bR leaves his square moving like a wR).

In today's post we will see a composition having both themes. It is an evolution of an idea of an old collaborator. It is a helpmate in two moves, with four solutions.

Manolas Emmanuel
1s3B2/2P2P2/2p1k1q1/8/8/8/5K2/8 (4 + 4)
h#2, 4111, Transmuted Kings

1.Ke5 cxb8=Q+ 2.Ka5 Bb4# (The bK must go away moving as Bishop, but is not able to reach a safe square).
1.Kd7 Bd6 2.Kc8 cxb8=R# (The bK must go away moving as Rook, but he can not).
1.Kf5 c8=S 2.Qxf7 Sd6# (The bK must go away moving as Knight, but he can not. Going, let us say, to d4, he discovers the bQf7, which is threating the wK, which then can move as Queen and capture the piece on d4. This was the aforementioned idea).
1.Qg5 Bg7 2.Ke7 f8=B# (The bK must go away moving as Bishop, but he can not).

The four promotions have been achieved, so this is an allumwandlung.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Comments and compositions from 'Zinon'


Flattering comments were heard about the "Artistic Chess" Festival organized by the Athletic Cub "Zenon" Glyfada in its resort, in the afternoon of Sunday 6 January 2013. During the interesting and lively celebration, young (the majority) but also adult chess players had a chance for a first acquaintance with chess compositions.
In the beginning, the champion of Attica Nikos Mendrinos spoke generally about the issue and explained the name "artistic". Then, he spoke specifically about orthodox two-movers and this was followed by a solving contest with 6 problems and 25' thinking time . The sequel was a presentation of Help-mate problems and a solving contest with 4 easy problems.
The event was attended by many chess players. These players participated in the proceedings, even though they did not took part in the solving contests. Among the adults were prominent composers and solvers : Harry Fougiaxis, Emmanuel Manolas and John Garoufalidis, who actively participated in the rating of those who competed and contributed to the success of competitions. We thank them warmly, as well as Mario Anastassiou and Dimitris Skyrianoglou, who contributed to the success of the Festival with their specific knowledge of similar events.

As mentioned above, the element of competition was not dominant, but will list here, in detail, the rating of two written exams (for statistical purposes and praise). After the name of each contestant, the total points scored (max 50) and, within parenthesis, the individual rating to the solution of Direct mate (max 30) and Helpmate problems (max 20), followed by total time for each solver (max 45 '):
 1) Boulamatsis Kon. 50 points.(30 + 20) 25 '
 2) Dracoulakos Grig. 47 p.(30 + 17) 27 '
 3) Gousgounis Nik. 47 p.(30 + 5) 33 '
 4) Mendrinos Gior. 40 p.(25 + 15) 45 '
 5) Giavassopoulos Thomas 35 p.(20 + 15) 26 '
 6) Bouzas Sot. 35 p.(20 + 15) 33 '
 7) Pagkalos Vlassis 33 p.(20 + 10) 29 '
 8) Zervos Kon. 30 p.(30 +) 9 '
 9) Kolettis Vas. 30 p.(15 + 15) 42 '
10 Τζανέτος) Gian. 30 p.(20 + 10) 44 '
and followed Pangalos Sp. 28 p., Apostolopoulou Anast. 26 p., Konstantellos Gian. 23 p., Chatzis Nik., Gerolymatou Mar, Zervos Laz., Despoudis Gian., Damilakos Il., Katsiri Anast., Assimomyti Ariadni, Kartsidimas Gian. with fewer points (some took part in one contest only).
The most impressive part of the events was kept for the closing of the evening : chess Solving Show. Pairs of players, from those who excelled in previous contests, with the help of a PC and a projector, competed to fast-solve some problems, in a TV-game style, and knock-out scoring. Here are the results :
Gregory Drakoulakos (Cup),
Sotiris Bouzas (silver medal),
Vasilis Kolettis (bronze medal) and Vlassis Pagkalos.
As additional prizes, copies (in traditional and electronic form) of the excellent book of Emmanuel Manolas for artistic chess, the most complete text published in Greek, were given to the participants.

In seasons where artistry is missing from our lives, we try to find it in chess events. The praise is pressing us to repeat the festival.

from Athletic Group 'Zinon' Glyfada, 9/Jan/2013

Alexandre Azhusin
Prapor Peremogi, 1970
K5k1/1Q6/8/8/4S3/8/8/8  (3 + 1)
#2, a) Diagram, b) bKg8 to a2, c) bKg8 to e1, d) bKg8 to h4

a) (Only this part was given to solvers)
1.Sg5!, 1...Kf8 2.Qf7#, 1...Rh8 2.Dh7#
1.Sd2!, 1...Ka1 2.Qb1#, 1...Ka3 2.Qb3#
1.Qb2!, 1...Kd1 2.Qd2#, 1...Kf1 2.Qf2#
1.Qg7!, 1...Kh3 2.Qg3#, 1...Kh5 2.Qg5#

Mikhail D. Ivanov
Rybak Primorya, 1982
8/8/8/8/pp6/8/R7/R1K1k3 (3 + 3)
1.Rh2! [2.Kb2# / Kc2#]

Vitaly Kovalenko
Karpati Igaz, 1968
1k6/1P6/4K3/8/1Q6/8/8/8 (3 + 1)
#2, a) Diagram, b) wRb4
1.Qb5! Ka7 / Kc7 2.b8=Q#
b) (Only this part was given to solvers)
1.Rb6! Ka7 / Kc7 2.b8=Q#

Gerhard Latzel
Die Schwalbe, 1930
8/8/8/8/K4S2/1p6/krsp4/bb6 (2 + 7)
1.Se2! [2.Sc3#]
1...d1=S 2.Sc1#

Stepan P. Tsyrulik
Komsomolsky Prapor, 1976
8/pp6/k7/8/1K6/2R5/3R4/8 (3 + 3)

Try : 1.Rc7? , 1...b6 2.Ra2#, 1...b5 2.Rd6#, 1...Kb6!

Key : 1.Rd7!, 1...b6 2.Ra3#, 1...b5 2.Rc6#, 1...Kb6 2.Rd6#

Ernst O. Martin
Neue Leipziger Zeitung, 1934
br6/4R3/8/8/4Q3/2p1K3/8/4k3 (3 + 4)
1.Rb7! [2.Qh1 / Qb1#] Re8 2.Rb1#

Nikos Mendrinos
8/1r6/8/8/8/K7/7R/k7 (2 + 2)
h#1, a) Diagram, b) bQb7
a) 1.Rb1 Ra2#
b) 1.Qh1 Rxh1#

Manolas Emmanuel
R3R3/8/8/2S5/2s5/2K2pS1/8/1rkr4 (5 + 5)
h#1, 5 solutions
1.Ra1 Rxa1#, 1.Rd1 Rxd1#, 1.Sb2 Sb3#, 1.Sd2 Sd3#, 1.f2 Se2#

Valentin F. Rudenko, Victor Chepizhny
1st Prize, Olympic Tourney, Leipzig, 1960
8/8/2P5/p7/k1p5/1pK5/1Q6/b2B4 (4 + 5)
Set play : 1...Kd4 2.c3 Qxb3#

Key : 1.Bxb2+! Kxc4 2.Ba3 Bxb3#

Reto List
feenschach, 1980

k6K/8/2P5/8/8/8/6p1/8 (2 + 2)
1.g1=R c7 2.Ra1 Kg8 3.Ra7 c8=Q#