26/09/20 Puzzle: Solution

In this puzzle, whoever’s turn it is to move (white or black) can checkmate in one.


Thank you to everyone who attempted this week’s puzzle. If you sent in your answers, you received at least 1 point. If you sent in at least one correct solution you received 2 points, and those who sent in two correct solutions received 3 points. This week, the following players received full marks for their solutions:

Natalie Weaver
Dominic Walters
Aathiran Oyalood
Daniel Wright

This means, in joint first place so far, with 6 points each we have:

Dominic Walters
Aathiran Oyalood
Daniel Wright

This Week’s Solution

For white…

The black king is currently trapped on the back rank by white’s knight and king. The whole of the back rank can be attacked by Ra8++. If you thought that the black knight could block – double check your analysis! The knight is actually pinned by the white bishop and cannot move in this position.

For black…

This solution for black is a bit harder, and similarly tactical! The black rook prevents the king moving to the seventh rank or to the e file. It is guarded by the king and knight, so the king could not capture it even though it is in his king’s field. The black bishop on h7 prevents the white king moving to g6 or f5. That means the king’s only escape square is g5. The relationship between the king and g5 is a diagonal – but in this position the queen and the black squared bishop are unable to get to that diagonal!

Lots of unusual pieces can attack two squares in a diagonal however! The black rook for example is attacking both e6 and f7, whose relationship is diagonal even though the rook himself cannot attack in such a way. The knight can be seen as attacking 4 pairs of diagonals – and in this position, it can be moved to attack both these squares. When Ne4++ both the white rook and the white queen are both unable to capture as, as above, they are both pinned to the king. The queen is pinned by the bishop and the rook will be pinned by the queen once the knight has moved (and therefore opened the line).

What To Do Next

Tomorrow you will be able find next week’s puzzle on our blog. The puzzler with the highest score at the end will win a free chess lesson with the teacher of their choice and a solver badge and spot/two solver spots. Our runners up will receive a solver badge or a solver spot if they already have a badge. Consistently sending in your results is key to winning so make sure you subscribe below to get notified about the checkmate puzzles the moment they are published.

Diagram courtesy of www.chess.com

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