The most mind-boggling chess puzzle I've ever seen
Like picking up a good ol' newspaper, there's something special about solving a chess problem from a book (or from, well, a newspaper!). Boring, boring, I know. But this gem certainly is not! I was working my way through the book Combination Challenge! last night when I came across this mind-boggling puzzle that I think fellow chess enthusiasts might also appreciate.
At first, the theme seems obvious enough: black has a rook lined up against the white king, and he has knights that can jump into the juicy g3 square, with forking possibilities against the king and queen. If one of the knights is taken by the h pawn, the h file is torn open to the rook's great satisfaction...
And this is where we get to the essence of puzzles, not to mention practical play. It's not enough to see the idea. You must find the execution, a precise series of moves, some of 'em bizarre and initially inexplicable, in order to successfully execute that apparently obvious idea (the one below is actually based on a third and less obvious motif which I will not spoil for you!). And this blow comes completely out of left field (well, depending on your perspective). Indeed, what you are about to witness is a crescendo of brilliant moves that, once revealed, become as apparent as the puzzle's underlying theme, where every single intricate detail is intentional. (Kudos to puzzler-composers, who, like speech writers, get far too little recognition.)
Here it is, take a shot. (Hint: The solution is not obvious or easy! That should rule a few things out, anyway. Oh, and the theme is Clearance.)