Kenilworth Kibitzer

A blog for members of the Kenilworth Chess Club.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Ziggy and Chess

One of the comments reads....

Newenglandah said, 10 days ago

"For this move, Ziggy will be ok if he stays on a black square."

Of course, Newenglandah means Ziggy will be ok if he goes on a light square. On White's next move, the knight can move to a light square only attacking the dark squares. So Ziggy is safe on light! An important feature to remember when looking at this similar position below.

Black to move and draw....

(Solution in comments)

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Kf8!! (Hey, you had a 50-50 shot-- if you thought something else besides Kf8 or Kf7, then go play in the streets.) Knowing the idea behind the move is more important then guessing the right move. This is the only drawing move. Why? Knowing that the knight attacks the opposite color it occupies (thanks Ziggy!) is only half the battle. We then have to come up with a plan using this. Black needs to maintain control over both f7 and f8. If White can use his knight to control either of those squares, then Black will be pushed out of the way and allow White to slide his King out and promote his h-pawn. So....the idea is Black's King WANTS to be in check. By being in check, the knight is not stopping him from entering one of the two key squares, f8 and f7. If Black is in check, the one of the two squares is ok to move in. The check isn't a bother! This keeps White's king and pawn locked in so the only moves are knight moves. And once the knight moves, we can go back to the other key square! We have the plan, so how do we figure out which square? Well, if the knight is on a dark square (a1), then we want our King to go to a dark square (f8)! The knight will move to a light square and attack the dark squares. Make sense? Probably not, but maybe showing some moves might shed some light.

1. ... Kf8!!
2. Nb3 Kf7
3. Nc5 Kf8
4. Nd7+ Kf7
5. Ne5+ Kf8
6. Ng6+ Kf7
7. Ne5+ Kf8
Draw please!

Is there even a knight on the board? Because it is doing nothing.

Let's see now if Black chose the other square...

1. ... Kf7??
2. Nb3 Kf8
3. Nc5 Kf7
4. Nd7 Ke7
5. Kg7 and White will promote.

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