(ICD) #2 - Igor's Chess Doubles - Prize to best response!

Igor's Chess Doubles - ICD #2

I got a number of favorable responses after posting my first set. No one who contacted me got even 20 (out of 22). So, here is the second set. I will not post the answers or solutions until after a week or so, to give readers a chance. You are welcome to post your solutions and explanations. Please don't use computer help. The best response can request a copy of my Chess Exam You vs. Fischer book (you pay only for shipping/handling). The earliest response gets a node, when similar answers are given. Use variations only as necessary. See my answers to ICD #1 as example.

I hope you like these puzzles and my Chess Exam books.

Check these pairs of positions. For each pair –

1. Determine what is different between setups (A) and (B). White is always at the bottom (a1 = bottom left corner). 1 point for each pair. Maximum of 4

2. You always have BLACK pieces, no matter Who is to move – determine if you (Black) would rather have position (A) or (B), or indifferent. Make sure you have a good reason! You get 2-10 points, depending on complexity. Adjust your score, if your reasoning wasn't 100%. Maximum of 21 for set 2.

Overall, the maximum score for set #2 is 25. How will you do? Invite your friends to compete! Enjoy!



[2 points]

#1 Easy

{A       B}

White to Move



#2 Easy

{A       B}

Black to Move



#3 Moderate

{A       B}

White to Move



#4 Hard

{A       B}

White to Move


For comments or permission to reprint please send inquires via email or this formAlso, please check monthly specials on Chess Exams.



Igor Khmelnitsky




Answers - will be posted in a week or so.


  • 4 years ago

    IM IgorKhmelnitsky

    In my opinion, Caliphigia had the best response. I'll send you a message. A couple of people also contacted me directly, I suggest in the future to post instead.

  • 4 years ago

    IM IgorKhmelnitsky

    Answers -
    1. {Black prefers B} moving the f6-N to h5 is NOT good for Black. While, the f4-P is now guarded by the h5-N, the Black Q will be unguarded. White can take advantage of this after 1.Qxe5+-. 2 points

    2. {A} with the K on f7, instead of h7, Black can no longer force a Draw after 1...Pg6+. White can just play 2.Kh6 Pxf5 3.Kh7, winning the P-race. 4 points.

    3. {A} Bf1-> Be2. I hope you noticed that Black's aggressive pieces might be running out of room. The only square available for the N is e7, which, in turn, would leave the Black B trapped after Pa3. Hence, White should be trying not to allow Black trade one of the pieces. With the B on e2, White plays 1.Kf1, leaving Black no hope. With the B on f1, White's attempt 1.Ke2!? can be met with 1...Ba6, and Black doesn't loose a piece.

    4. {B} Kd2->Ke2. If you figure this one out on your own, you should VERY PROUD of yourself. White's idea 1.Pg5+ fails either way, since, after 1...Qxg5, the c8-B prevents 2.Rh3. Instead, White has a striking 1.Ne6!, when 1...Qxe5 (what else?) is met by 2.Rh3+Qh5 3.Pg5#. However, with K on e2 {B}, White can't play 3.Pg5, since the Pg4 is pinned!

  • 4 years ago


    1 B is better because if white takes the knight at e5, e6xe5, e1xe7, f6xe7 material advantage to black.

    2 B is better because by moving the black pawn forward B must take it but A may bypass it.

    3. A is better because castling is one step further away.

    4. B is better for black because the undefended pawn at f4 may be taken by the bishop at c8 and then the rook at f3 is pinned.

  • 4 years ago


    1. B, Knight on f6 protects d7

    2. A, after g6 white doesn't have Kh6!

    3. A, after Ke2 black has ...Ba6!

    4. B, It looks like the king is out of the way, but this is not so, the king needs to stay there for g5 reasons

  • 4 years ago


    1: B is better because 1: Qxe5...dxe5 2: Rxd7. in situation B black could retake on d7, but in A white would be up in material and position having a rook on the 7th rank.

    2: A is better because after g6, the black king blocks Kh6 in A, but not in B.

    3: A is better. White can play 1: Nfd2. if black takes Bxd2, white can play Qxd2, and then black is forced to play Ne7. White can then play Bf3. black then has to defend with Nc6 or c6, and white can push up the pawn to e5, having a clear advantage and a great attack

    4: B is better. white can play 1: g5+...Qxg5. 2: Rh3+...Qh5 3: Qg5+...Kg7. 4: Nxg5+...Kh8 5: Qe5+...Nf6 6: Qxf6+...Kg8 7: Qg7# (every move there with the exception of 1...Qxg5 is forced, but if black doesnt take the pawn he loses his queen). this is only possible in A though, because in B, 2...Qh5 would check the white king. white still wins the queen, but for the time being checkmate is avoided.

  • 4 years ago


    Original Message by Caliphigia on 2/24/13 2:00 PM: #1: The difference is position of Nf6 - h5. In position A knight doesn't defend the queen, so white can play 1. Qxe5 de5, 2. Rxd7. My choice: {B} #2: Difference is position of black king. On h7 king controls square h6, so after 1...g6, 2. fg Kg7, black has easy draw,while if the king is on f7 after 1...g6, 2. Kh6 gf, 3. Kh7 white wins; else white king enters on g6. My choice:{A} #3: Difference position of white bishop on e2. With bishop on e2 white can play 1. Kf1 and win a piece (1...Ne7, 2. a3 Ba5, 3. b4); if bishop is on f1 white can not play 1. Ke2 with the same idea because of 1...Ba6. My choice:{A} #4: Difference: White King on d2. After 1. Ne6 Qxe5, 2. Rh3 Qh5, with the king on e2 white doesn't have 3. g5# because of the bind. My choice:{B}

  • 4 years ago


    1.Knight on h5 and f6 is difference. I prefer position B because the g3 out post will be an active square for the knight controlling many important squares.(it can also jump to f5 and d3 what will be just a pain for white.

    2.Black king on h7 and f7 is the difference. I prefer position A because black has a draw with g6+! fxg6 Kg7 Kg4 Kxg6 with a draw because black has the opposition. However, in position B after g6+ fxg6 Kg7 Kh4! Kxg6 Kg4 it will be white who was the opposition and will win the game

    3.Bishop on e2 and f1 is the difference. It may seem like the Bishop on e2 is developed, but it is not doing much.In fact, it is just in the place to get harassed by a knight on f4.In position B, if white blocks with a knight the black knight will go to f4 with a comfortable game. So, white plays Bd2 Bxd2 Qxd2 with the idea of controlling f4. But then black simply retreats to e7 when he can play Bb7 next move to control the long diagonal.(this is another disadvantage of Be2. It can not counter the a8-h1 diagonal) But all these nightmares are gone in position A.He can kick a knight on f4 with g3, and also challenge the long diagonal with g3 and Bg2. This is why I prefer position B for white.

    4.The king on d2 and e2 is the difference.Black has a threat of Bxg4 In both positions but in position B the threat is bigger because it comes with the cost of a rook.This is why I prefer position B for black

  • 4 years ago


    #1- in position B, it looks like a tempo ahead. Knight is heading for that juicy g3 square. but what is it doing there? sure it threatens the white bishop, but that bishop is not that great anyyway. but the knight of f6(position A), controls squares that white could use for his pieces. it fights for the center. if white ever decides to plop a knight on d5, black takes and c-file is open for counter-play.with that I prefer position A

    #2-in position A- black forces a draw with g6+! after white takes he puts it in front of the pawn. and white has no way to make progress. black takes the first doubled pawn and the second one will easily stalemate black.

    in position B- g6+ does not work because black does not have the opposition. because after g6, white does not take the pawn because white does not take, but instead pushes his king forward and wins the game with the faster pawn.

    I prefer position A


    #3-position A has the white light squared bishop undeveloped, which is the only difference in the positions. but on e2, it is not that great of a square to be on. in position A, white saves a tempo with his bishop so it can go to d3 and potentially challange blacks control of the h1-a8 diagonal.  with that said I'd prefer position B, just because white has to waste another move with his bishop.

    #4-in both positions, it looks rather uneasy for black. g5+ might come with Rh3. but of course, blacks light squared bishop neutralized that threat. so black is out of immediate danger for both positions.

    in both positions, white has to look out for Bxg4 which would win the pawn and attack the rook. In position A, it is less necessary. In position B, black would pin the rook and win material, so it is more necessary.

    I would prefer position B for black.

  • 4 years ago


  • 4 years ago

    IM IgorKhmelnitsky

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