Reader Questions on Sunday’s Newsletter Chess Tactic

I got a few questions about the chess tactic that I sent out on Sunday, which you can read here:

Here is the position in question, with white to move:

Alexander Morozevich vs Anish Giri Biel 2012 White to Move

James writes:

Hi Tim,

You got my vote; your newsletter rocks my chess world.

Just a quick question:

Maybe Alexander Morozevich saw this tactic and double checked all possibilities for black after move 33.Qh6+ … But realized that Anish Giri can respond well by playing:

33. Qh6+! Kf6 34. Qh8+ Ke7 (Remember, the white knight is still being threatened by the black queen) 35. Qh4+ Nf6 (from here white has to support his e5 knight because moving it on 36th move will be his downfall)…

What do you think of this response by black?

My response (pieced together from two different e-mails):

Hey James,

Thanks for the nice e-mail!

Finally had a chance to look at that position some more – so after 33. Qh6+! Kf6 34. Qf4+ is the move.

After the King moves, white can play 35. Qxf7+ winning the pawn that way.

I know that Moro withdrew from the tournament early, and ended up losing this game, so I don’t think he was playing very well, which might indicate that he did miss this move.

Thanks again!



I got one other question about this position from a different newsletter reader with a different variation…

Lane writes:

Hey Tim,

Just wonderin I’m lookin at the newsletter about the game played by Morozevich and Giri you sent out on Sunday and I just noticed the move 33. Nxf7 threatening blacks queen and then if black does take white has 34. Qf3+ and snatches the rook on b7.

Is this a viable option as well or is there something I’m missing?



My response:

Hey Lane,

The problem with that is black doesn’t have to take the knight, and then Rb1+ is going to leave a mark :-)

White will get checkmated. The black queen is now covering the h2 escape square after the knight moves, and the only thing white can do is a useless block with his queen :-)



This was a pretty challenging problem – especially since one of the best players in the world missed it in a long time control game. Lane had a good idea looking at the “loose pieces” in the position, and James had some good ideas concerning a variation I forgot to cover in the solution. Thanks guys for taking the time to write to me!

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