Can you solve these chess puzzles?
These puzzles are very difficult.

Can you solve these chess puzzles?

Stahlspiel
Stahlspiel
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2

Hi everybody!

Today I brought to you some interesting (and very difficult) chess exercises. I found them interesting because they have an art involved - some of them have promotion for all four pieces. These diagrams are designed for you to train your creative thinking during games, and not exactly for trying to solve them (unless you want to spend more than 1 hour of your life, which I don't recommend). It will be fun to look at the analysis and try to find strange moves to solve the puzzles.
But finally, let's go to the exercises.

A warning before trying to solve the problems: The diagrams are VERY, VERY difficult. Do not try to treat these exercises as common tactical exercises as this is not the case. To give you an idea, maybe even Magnus Carlsen would take some time to completely solve and understand these puzzles. So you may need to take some time just to try to find the resolution (if you wish). Under the exercises, I will put the explanations of the moves of each one of them by a Grandmaster. Let's start!

DIAGRAM 1

The hardest. White to play and win (Gurgenidze, D - 1974).

DIAGRAM 2
White to play and draw (Zachodjarkin, G - 1930)
DIAGRAM 3
White to play and draw (Bernahrdt, G - 1923).
DIAGRAM 4
White to play and win (Evreinov, V - 1962)
DIAGRAM 5
White to play and win (Nadareishvili, G - 1970).
DIAGRAM 6
White to play and win (Nadareishvili, G - 1970).

EXPLANATION OF THE ANSWERS

Now, GM Krikor Mekhitarian's analysis of each exercise.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 1

We start with 1. hxg7, threatening promotion on h8 and f8. 1. ... Rg2+! This move is forced to attempt to sacrifice the rook in h2 and then be played Bxf7. 

2. Kf1!

[2. Kxg2? Rxg2+! 3. Rxh2 Bxf7 4. gxf7 Kxg7 5. Nxd7 b3! and black promotes 6. axb3 ( 6. Ne5+ Kxf7 7. Nc4 bxa2 -+) 6. ... a3 -+]

2. ... Rf2+ 3. Ke1 Re2+ 4. Kd1 Rd2+ 5. Kc1 Rc2+ 6. Kb1 Rb2+ 7. Ka1 Rxa2+ What does white get by giving the a2 pawn?

8.  Kb1 Rb2+ 9. Kc1 Rc2+ 10. Kd1 Rd2+ 11. Re1 Re2+ 12. Kf1 Rf2+ 13. Kg1 Rg2+ 14. Kxg2! Rxh2+ 15. Kxg2 Bxf7 16. gxf7 Kxf7 17. Nxd7 b3 18. Ne5+ Kxg7 19. Nc4! Controlling the two pawns 19. ... b2 The last attempt to trick White. If Nxb2, then a3 - + and in this pattern the promotion is unstoppable 20. Na3!

It continues with 20. ... Kf6 21. Kg3 Ke6 22. Kf3 Kd5.

23. f5! White still needs some accuracy 23. ... Kc5 24. Nb1 Kb4 25. f6 a3 26. f7 +- promoting the pawn with a check. The other moves are very easy to understand.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 2

White has a serious problem. The promotion of the f-pawn. You tried to stop, but couldn't, right?

1. g7+ Nxg7

What did White get from this? The king is a little stuck in h8 and g8.

[1. ... Kg8 allows a beautiful defense 2. Ng4! threatening the f2 pawn and Nf6+ followed by g8=Q# (2. ... Nxg7 3. f1=Q?? Nf6+ 4. Kf7 g8=Q#)]

2. Nf7 Kg8 3. Bc5

Perhaps you may have thought of this thinking that after f1 = Q, Nh6+ Kh8 Nc7+ with perpetual check. This is not true because the queen controls f7.

3. ... f1=Q 4. Nh6+ Kh8 

And now? What happens next?

5. Bd6!! = A brilliant defense. If black tries to activate the g7 knight then white will always have Be5+! and even if the queen was controlling e5, then Nf7+ wins the queen. The g5 pawn is untouchable because white will always have Nf7 + and if the queen captures the bishop of d6, then Nf7+. White only has to be careful not to lose any pieces because of check. Computers have difficulty solving this diagram. 1/2-1/2.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 3

We know that it is difficult to play down a piece, especially in an ending like this. The hope here is the a-pawn. However, you can see that black can stop this pawn. Let's analyze the position.

1. d6!

White cuts the bishop's diagonal. This tactical theme is common in exercises. The threat here is dxe7.

1. ... exd6 a forced move. 2. Kd3!! Preventing the bishop from defending the pawn from diagonal a7-g1. However, black can take g3, play d5 and do Bb8.

2. ... Bxg3 3. a5 d5 4. a6 Bb8 6. a7!! Bxa7.

Stalemate! The monarch has nowhere to go. This theme recurs in some exercises.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 4

Black has a strong h3 pawn subject to promotion. The good side is that the bishop of a6 controls f1 in case of a check in a1 if white pulls the king closer to the pawn with Kg4, for example.

1. c6!

There are no direct threats. White intends to block the pieces in the queenside. If the bishop goes out, the pawn promotes and bxc6 loses the bishop.

[1. Kg4 h2 2. Kg3 Kg1 3. Ra1+ Bf1 4. Rxf1 Kxf1 5. Kxf2 And white is lost if black plays correctly.]

1. ... h2!

Black continues trying to promote.

2. b4!

[2. cxb7? wouldn't make white wins 2. ... Bxb7 3. Kg4 Kg1 4. Kg3 threatening Ra1# 4. ... Bg2 5. Ra1+ Bf1 6. Rxf1 Kxf1 7. Kxh2 Kf2 8. Kh3! c5 9. Rg4 = and white can draw.]

2. Rg1!

Now it looks like black's h-pawn is going to promote h1=Q+. But this is not what happens:

2. ... Rxh2! 3. Kxh2 b5!!

Now black pieces are completely stuck. The last thing to do is try to help with the king.

[4. ... Bxb5?? 5. cxb7!! +-]

[4. ... bxc6?? 5. bxa6 +-]

4. ... Rg3! 5. Rf6! Rf4 6. Re7 Ke5 7. bxa6!

White finally wins with 8. Kd7. Now, a beautiful ending with a tactic that we always love.

8. ... a5 9. Rxc7 a4 10. Rb7 a3 11. c7 a2  12. c8=Q  a1=Q 13. Qh8+!! +- 1-0.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 5

White has less material. His hopes are betting on the strong g7 pawn to create some mate themes. But it's not that simple. A move like Rf3 allows Dh2+!

1. Bg4!

I think you found that move, right? The threat is Rf1 and in the case of Dh2+?, then Bh3, winning.

1. ... Qe7!

Continuing to defend and threatening Dxg7#.

[If 1. ... Dxg3?? 2. Be6#]

2. Be6+ Qxe6!

Now the queen checks are under control, it's time to attack! But where can we go?

3. Ta3!

[3. Rf3? Qe7 Rf8+ Qxf8 gxf8=Q+ Kxf8 and the pawn ending is winning for black: 6. Rxg6 Rg8! An important move to avoid Kh7 and the g-pawn promotion]

3. ... De8

Controlling the a8 square and the threat here to advance the b-pawn to disturb the rook and after threat the g7 pawn.

4. Ra6!!

I know you didn't find that move. A move from another planet! The idea is the threat of Re6, and when the black play Qb8 to try to enter in h2, Ra2 with the idea of Re2 and Te8+!

4. ... Qb8

[4. b5 And Ra6!! = followed by Re8+ when black move the queen]

[4. ... b6 5. Rxb6 Qc8 6. Re6!! =] 

5. Ra2 Qc8

[5. ... b5 and now white can come back to e2, threatening Re8+! (6. Re2 Kf7 Rf2+ Kg8 Re2! b4 Re8+ Dxe8 =]

6. Ra3 = and black can't improve, Re3 is a serious threat to draw. 1/2-1/2.

EXPLANATION OF EXERCISE 6

The most artistic among them. This looks very easy. White will promote e8=Q+ and Black's king is very exposed. But is it just that?

1. e8=Q+ Kd2

[1. Kf2? Nh3+ +- with a very strong attack.]

2. Dd8+!

[2. Qe2+? Qxe2 3. Nxe2 loses due to 3. Bd4+! Nxd4 4. c1=Q#]

2. ... Kc1

The black king hides but white finds a spectacular sequence:

3. Ne2+ [forking the king and the bishop] Qxe2 4. Qg5+! Be3!

[4. ... Qe3?? and the black's queen is pinned - white can promote with g8=Q +-]

5. Bxe2!

[ 5. g8=Q? looks fine, however black has a good threat: 5. ... Qe1!!, threatening mate with Kd2 or Qc3!]

5. ... Bxg5

The only way to stop the mate is promoting to knight.

6. g8=N! Bd2 7. c8=R!

Defending c3 in the correct form to avoid the stalemate.

7. ... Be3 8. h8=B

The beauty of this problem. There are still more ways to answer this puzzle, but this way is the most beautiful. 1-0.

And did you manage to solve the diagrams? Leave it in the comments! Thanks for reading.