Chess Crackers
November/December 2006

The following represent a variety of positions from talented Black players. In the following diagrams, you're challenged to find the winning line. 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

NM Russel Porter-NM Equitable Brown
Black to Move (after 36.Rc1-c2)

IM Dean Ippolito-IM Amon Simutowe
Black to Move (after 47.Ke1-f1)

No. 3

No. 4

NM Dale Haessel - NM Marvin Dandridge
Black to Move (after 44.Kb6-a6)

FM Carlos Davila - NM Kevin Denny
Black to Move (after 29.Qf3-e3)


No. 1 Porter-Brown (2006 Jamaican Championship - Kingston, Jamaica)
In this Jamaican showdown between a seasoned veteran and the newest Jamaican Master, black finished the game in fine style with a stock sacrifice to get a kingside attack rolling. A typical King's Indian battle, white tried to barrel through on the queenside while black initiated a kingside jaunt with 36Nxd5! After 37.exd5 the avalanche is on with 37e4. White tried to hold onto his material with 38.Nc1 but ended up falling to 38Rf4! 39.Qe6  Rh4+ 40.Kg1 Qe3+ and white resigned since mate follows. (See game)

No. 2  Ippolito-Simutowe (2001 Smartchess Invitational - New York, USA)
This tournament was part of Amon Simutowe's initial U.S. tour featuring the first of four tournaments. His results was lackluster and would begin a precipitous fall from a near 2500 rating. However, there were flashes of his brilliance.  Ippolito sacrificed a piece in the opening for a kingside attack. Simutowe returned the piece and his pieces sprang to life and aimed at the white king. White staved off the attack, but had to allow penetration and the diagrammed position, the Zambian nation finished with the simple 47Bg2! threatening the simple mate with Rf1. White goes 48.h3 (48. Rg3+ Kf7; 48.Re1 Rxf4) 48Rf1+ 49.Kh2 Be4+! 50. Kg3 Rg2+ with mate in two. White resigned. (See game; Simutowe's tour; IM Amon Simutowe)

No. 3  Haessel-Dandridge (1997 Chicago Open -  Oakbrook, Illinois, USA)
Another gem from a premier tactician, Marvin Dandridge. In this battle Dandridge appeared to get the worst of the opening and middlegame, but conjured up a kingside attacking involving a rook sacrifice. He chased the white king to the queenside and finished his attack with the unobvious 44Na3! double attacking the a4-pawn. The Canadian player ended up getting mated after45. Qd5 Qxa4+ 46. Kb7 Rb4+ 47. Kc7 Qa7+ 48. Kd6 Qb8+ and the king has no place to hide (On 49.Ke7 Qf8#; 49.Kc6  Qb6#; 49.Kc5 Qb6#). Nice! (See game; NM Marvin Dandridge)

No. 4  Davila-Denny (1995 Subzonal, San Salvador, El Salvador)
The Barbados Master trotted out the Dragon Sicilian and white allowed early equality. Black continue with pressure in the center and mobilized his position for a kingside attack. Denny finished with 29Nh3+!  30. gxf3 Rf3! (wham!) White resigned here. Play would have ended after 31.Qb6 (white has to guard f2-square or give up queen with 31.h4) 31g3! when black will develop a mating attack. (See game; IM Kevin Denny)

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