10/10/20 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:

Rohan Bhalla
Aathiran Oyalood
Daniel Wright

This means, in joint first place so far, with 12 points each we have:

Aathiran Oyalood
Daniel Wright

Current runners-up:

Rob (9 points)
Natalie Weaver (8 points)

This Week’s Solution

For white…

What we need to work out first, is ‘where could the black king move if it was black’s turn?’ Well, whilst the rook prevents the king moving to c6, d7 or e7, he himself is unprotected – the king could capture him. The king cannot move to a square occupied by his own piece, so c5 is off limits, and white’s pawn and king prevent black moving the king to d5 and e5. That means, in a single move, white needs to attack 3 squares; c7 (the white rook), e6, and most importantly d6 – where the king is now.

These three squares create an unusual pattern of squares that might usually only be attacked by a rook (if placed on c6 for example), or a queen who is able to attack in many directions. However, we don’t have a queen, and the rook would still not be safe on c6. Therefore the solution is to activate 2 pieces in a single move, by using tactics. By moving the king, the bishop can be unleashed from h2, attacking two of the required squares. By shifting the king upwards, he helps guard the last available escape square. Therefore the solution for white this week is Kf5++, a brilliant discovered attack.

For black…

If we begin with the same question for white’s king, we can find their escape squares – f5, and f3. It is important to remember the direction the black pawns are travelling in to note that they guard g3 and e3. If we include the square the king is on with f5, and f3, we realise we simply need to attack the ‘f’ file. This can be done quite simply by bringing the rook to the same file, and the solution is Rf1++.

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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