Puzzles from the PS 124 tournament!

1. Edeli is white in the position above. Her opponent played 9…Bg4. What happens next?

2. Teraab was black in the above position, and his opponent advanced in the center with e4. Is this thematic or just bad?

3. Jorge (black) found a great move here, winning white’s queen. What is it?

Danny, with the fist of determination.

answers
1. A beautiful position reminiscent of a trap in the Fort Knox French (after 1, e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bd7 5. Nf3 Bc6 6. Bd3 Nf6? 7. Nxf6 Qxf6? 8. Bg5! Bxf3 9. Qd2!!). After 9… Bg4, it looks like the queen is trapped, but white can try 10. Bxf6, since 10… Qxf6 11. Qxg4 and 10…Bxf3 11. Bxd8 both leave white up a piece. However, black has the tricky move 10… Qd7! defending the bishop and keeping the white queen trapped. Now white cannot play 11. Qxd5 because of 11…Bxh2 and 12….Qxd5. White can try the startling 11. Bf5!, hoping for 11…Qxf5? 12. Qxf5 Bxf5 13. Bb2 (13. Bxg7). But black just continues calmly with 11…Bxf5 and after 12. Bxg7 Rg8 13. Bb2 Be4 wins for black, as does 12. Bb2 Bg4.

2. Teraab’s opponent (Mario) could not play e4, because the rook on e1 will prove to be overloaded. For example, 8. e4 dxe4 9. dxe4 Nxe4 (9…Bxe4? 10. Nxe4 Qxd1 11. Nxf6+ and white is up a piece) 10. Nxe4 Qxd1 11. Rxd1 Bxe4 and black is up a pawn.  Compare this to a line we play against the pirc: 1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 g6 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Be2 c6 6. a4 0-0 7. 0-0 Nbd7 8. Bf4 Re8 9. h3 e5? 10. dxe5 dxe5 11. Nxe5 Nxe5 12. Qxd8 Rxd8 13. Bxe5.

3. Jorge played the beautiful double attack 1…Nb4, hitting the queen and threatening 2…Nxa2#. After the only move, 2. Qb3, Jorge continued 2…Nd3 3. Kb1 Nc5+.

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