Chess Crackers
May/June 2010

The following represent a variety of positions from the 2010 Jamaican Championship. In the following diagrams, you're challenged to find the best line of play. Each position ends with decisive material gain or mate. Solve each of the four problems (as deep as possible) and check your answers by scrolling below. No peeking!!

No. 2

No. 1

Russel Porter - Shane Matthews
White to Move (after 33 Nd7)

Peter Thomas - Shane Matthews
Black to Move (after 51.Nd6-e8)

No. 3

No. 4

Shane Matthews - Daren Wisdom
White to Move (after 32c7-c6)

Daren Wisdom - Geoffrey Byfield
White to Move (after 43...f7-f6)


No. 1 Porter-Matthews (2010 Jamaican Nationals, Kingston, Jamaica)
This is game ends with an instructive tactical flurry. Porter ends the game swiftly with 34.Rbe1! Qd8 35. Bxd7! undermining after 35Qxd7 36. Bxf6+. Black resigned in lieu of 36...Kxf6  37.Rxh6+ mating. (See game)

No. 2  Thomas-Matthews (2010 Jamaican Nationals, Kingston, Jamaica)
This was a nice sacrifice showing that the seven-time National Champion had a good understanding of  the strength of his passed pawn and the fact that the knight is such a clumsy defender against the  a- and h-pawns. Thus, he decided to play 51h4! After 52. Nf6+ Kg3 53.Nxd5 h3 54. Ne7 h2 55.Nxf5 Kh3 and the pawn will queen. (See game)

No. 3  Matthews-Wisdom (2010 Jamaican Nationals, Kingston, Jamaica)
Another instructive finish by Matthews this time an exchange sacrifice designed to support a dangerous passed pawn. White finished with 33.Rxe5! fxe5 34. 34. Bb6 Kg6 35. Kc4 Kf5 36. Kc5 Ra8 37.Kxc6 Ke6 38.Kb7 and black will not be able to stop the a-pawn. (See game)

No. 4  Wisdom-Byfield (2010 Jamaican Nationals, Kingston, Jamaica)
This game was a total disaster because black had a clear win. Instead black played the fatal 43f7-f6 and was met rudely with 44.exf6! (all other moves lose) 44gxf6 and now 45. h5! Kxd6 46. h6 1-0 (See game)

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