Test your chess: daily chess puzzle # 236


White to play and win

B Rabinowitz v A Schobi 1955



I struggled with this puzzle, eventually settling on the small retreat 1 Qf4! planning 2 Ng5, hitting h7: and I felt it gave white a strong advantage. Turning on Stockfish it gave the move as its first choice initially, with +1 advantage, hardly startling, before switching to 1 Qd2!, which I will come to below.

There is one, nice, unforced line after 1 Qf4. If 1…Qc7 2 Ng5 f5 then 3 ef!! Qf4 4 Bh7+ Kh8 5 fg mate. In the game, black played 3…e5 and resigned after 4 Bh7+ Kh8 5 fg+ Kg7 6 Be5+.

However, 1…Bd7 is better (after 1 Qf4); 2 Ng5 Bb5 3 Bb5 Qb6 4 c4 and white is better, but it really is a computer position: 4…a6 5 Bd4 Qc7 6 Ba4 Qc4 is unclear to me, with black having three…

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Published by chessmusings

Chris Torres is a nationally renowned scholastic chess coach working in both Bakersfield and the San Francisco Bay Area. His classes have attracted players of strengths ranging from rank beginners to world champions. A chess professional since 1998, Chris is widely recognized as one of the main driving forces behind the explosion in popularity and sudden rise in quality of scholastic chess in California. Currently, Chris Torres has the ranking of candidate master and serves as the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy. Mr. Torres’ hobbies include playing classical guitar and getting his students to appear on the national top 100 chess rating lists.

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