Chess Crackers
September/October 2001

The following represent a variety of positions from the recent Wilbert Paige Memorial tournament. In each diagram, 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 Norman Rogers-NM Grace Nsubuga
White to Move (after 36…Kf7)

FM Kenny Solomon-IM Michael Schleifer
Black to Move  (after 27.Qd4)

No. 3

No. 4

FM Kenny Solomon - FM Ron Simpson
Black to Move (after 33.Re2)

NM Ernest Colding-IM Michael Schleifer
Black to Move (after 15.Qe2)


No. 1  Rogers-Nsubuga (Wilbert Paige Memorial, (4))
In this game, the Ugandan master entered unfavorable tactics and ended up with a compromised king's position. Rogers pounced on the opportunity and ended the game with the snappy 1.Nxf8! Black replied with 1...Qxf8, but after 2.Qd7+ he resigned before losing his queen after 2...Qe7 and 3.Rg7+. (See game)

No. 2  Solomon- Schleifer (Wilbert Paige Memorial, (2))
IM Schleifer played this game with such energy and force and his piece placement resulted in a grand opportunity to cause confusion in white's ranks. White had just played Qd4 attempting to simplify. Black played 1...Be2! And after 2.Rd2  Bxf3+ 3.Bxf3 Nd3! white cannot avoid material loss after 4.Qxe3 Rxe3. On 5.Re2 Nf4+ wins the exchange. On 5. Re1 (the game line), black plays 5...Ne1+! again winning the exchange. It was a powerful performance by the Canadian IM! (See game)

No. 3  Colding-Schleifer (Wilbert Paige Memorial, (8))
In this position, white seemed to have a strong center, but black started to wrest the initiative after his previous move d5. White played Qe2, after which we come to the position in question.  White's king comes under rapid fire after 1...Nxe4! (1...d4 2. Nd5 Nxd5 3.exd5 Bxd5 4.Nxd4!? and black will struggle to win.) After 2.Bxe4 dxe4 3. Nxe4 black plays the annihilating 3...Qb4! and like lightening, white's king 's position is quickly destroyed. With black's raking bishops exerting serious pressure, white was forced to jettison two pawns beginning with 4.c4 and black went on to win easily. (See game)

No. 4  Simpson-Solomon (Wilbert Paige Memorial, (5))
Ronald Simpson is a very ambitious attacker and this was perhaps his most impressive win of the tournament. After trotting out the dangerous Volga/Benko gambit, he developed the initiative and reeled off the stunning 1...Ne3! The white knight on e5 now hangs so Solomon opts for 2.Nc6 after which Simpson plows in with 2...Qf3! threatening mate and the rook. The game ended quickly after 3.Qxe6+ Kh8 4.fxe3 Qxe2 5.Qh3 Qe1+. (See game)

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