This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
What’s the Question? by National Master Daniel Gurevich

Jackson Cloud Sandy Springs, Georgia

tical motif invented? Most likely, the inventor of

Q: A:

attraction was the first player to wonder what would happen if one of the opponent’s pieces was actually somewhere else. Here is a neat example from Mur- ray Chandler’s new book Chess Puzzles for Kids:

8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

-+-+-+k+ +-+-+pzp- -+-+-+-zp +-+-+-+- -+-+-+-+ +-+-+nzPl -+Q+-zP-zP

+-+-tR-+K a b c d e f g h

White to move? No, that would

be too easy. 1. Re8 is check- mate! It is actually Black to move. You must be asking how Black could possibly survive here; even if he takes the rook on e1, he will still be down a queen. The worst part is that his position is com- pletely hopeless after 1. ... Nxe1 2. Qe2 Ng2 3. Qh5, and Black loses a piece. Now maybe you are starting to

look for tricks; what if White’s queen were on f5? Then we could take it! What if we had an

4 Chess Life for Kids! February 2013 How was the attraction tac-

extra knight on f4? Then we could checkmate in one move with 1. ... Bg2! Of course, that is not how it works. There is one case when imagi-

nation can give you many unex- pected wins, though. That is when you are using attraction. Do you wish you could fork the White’s king and queen here? You can!

1. ... Bg2+!! 2. Kxg2 Nxe1+

Dreams do come true! By attract- ing the king to g2, we have cre- ated a fork that was impossible before. Now Black will easily win the endgame up a piece. By the way, sometimes this kind

of combination is called a decoy. My take is that you do not have to memorize fancy names; after all, in the universal language of chess, a player from any country can look at this position and understand that this is an attraction combination.

Attraction combinations can be

more complicated. Let us look at a more complicated problem. (You might want to keep a chessboard by your side to set up the position and move the pieces around a bit.)

8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

-+q+r+k+ +p+-+pzp- psn-+-+Nzp +-+-+-+- -zP-+-+-+ zPQvL-+nzPl -+R+-zP-zP

+-tR-+-+K a b c d e f g h

This time it is White to move.

Your task is to figure out whether 1. Bxg7 is a good move. You should not worry: this is anything but easy, and we will go through this together. When I first put this position on my computer, even the silicon monster did not know the answer. Here is your first hint: normal

moves for Black do not lead to an advantage. For example, 1. ... Qe6? 2. Qxe6 Bxe6 3. Nf4 Kxg7 4. Nxe6+ Rxe6 5. Rc7 leads to an endgame that is about equal. Hopefully you noticed how similar the kingside position here is to the first position we looked at. Are you looking at 1 ... Bg2+? If

so, you are onto the right idea, but your execution is off. After 2. Kxg2 Ne1+ 3. Rxe1, Black is dead lost. It would be much better if the knight were taking a piece on e1 when delivering this fork. What about 1. ... Re1+, another attrac- tion idea? Notice my train of thought here: what if White’s rook were already on e1 so we could

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24