Combining well for an exciting ending

 Generally it is not often that one witnesses a checkmate inflicted by two knights or a knight and bishop, as more often the end is brought about with more pieces combining together or a queen and rooks being involved.
In the game which follows, white threatens a delightful checkmate with two knights and even though it does not actually happen in the game, the ending combination is exciting to watch, especially since white’s pieces are on the rampage.
White: Arturo Lopez – Black: Velasco Gutierrez
Mexico Rapid tournament, 1985
The Two Knights Defence
 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6

The Two Knights Defence
 4.Ng5
Making things interesting by gunning on the king side right from the word go!
4. ..d5 5.exd5 Na5 6.Bb5+ c6 7.dxc6 bxc6 8.Be2 h6 9.Nf3 e4 10.Ne5
Still following opening theory
10. ..Bd6 11.f4 exf3 12.Nxf3 0–0 13.d4 c5 14.dxc5 Bxc5. Black has given up a pawn for development
15.Qxd8 Rxd8
Early exchange of queens.
16.Bd2 Nc6 17.Nc3 Ng4
Trying out something new! The continuation played more often is  17...Nb4 18.0–0–0 Bf5 19.Ne1 Ng4 20.a3 Nc6 21.Nd3 Bb6 22.h3 which works well for white
18.Ne4 Bb6 19.0–0–0
White surprises black by castling on the queen side and inviting a fork which would lose an exchange at some point or the other
 19...f5 20.Bb5 Ne7 21.Nc3
Strengthening the security of his king

21. ..Nf2
Black decides to go for the fork!
22.Rde1 Nxh1. Black goes for the rook but in the process the knight is stuck at the corner of the board
23.Rxe7
Invading the seventh rank! Here black’s rook and bishop are still not into play
23. ..Bc5 24.Bc4+ Kh7 25.Rc7
Still patrolling the seventh rank!
25. ..Bd6
Black wants to drive him out of this crucial rank but white will not yield
26.Rf7 Bd7
Not a good move! He should have persisted in his drive to pursue the rook and challenged him with 26...Rf8 27.Rxf8 Bxf8 28.Bd5 Rb8 29.Be3 a5 30.Ba7 Rb4 (30...Bd6 31.Bxb8 Bxb8 32.Kd2 Kg6 (32...Nf2 33.h3 Kg6 34.Ke2 Bg3 35.Nd2 Ba6+ 36.Kf3 Nh1 37.a4 Be1 38.Nb3 Ng3 39.Nb5-) 33.Nd4 Bf4+ 34.Ke1 Bxh2 35.Nc6 Bd6 36.a3 a4 37.Nxa4 Bb7 38.Nc3 Bxc6 39.Bxc6) 31.a3 Rg4 32.g3). 32...Bd6 33.Nb5 And if 26...Nf2!? 27.Bd5 Rb8 28.Be3 Ng4 29.Bxa7 Rb4 30.a3 Rf4 31.Bd4 Rxd4 32.Nxd4 Bxh2 33.Be6 Ne3 34.Bxc8 Rxc8 35.g3 Bxg3 36.Nxf5 Nxf5 37.Rxf5 Kg6
27.Nd5. A very strong move! This move virtually renders Black helpless
27...Be8
Still trying to drive back the rook but it is late now!
28.Nf6+ Kh8 29.Ne5

Diagram 1
Another superb knight move! Beautiful combination by white. If  29 ...Bxf7 30 Nxf7 and an absolutely delightful checkmate by two knights! And if 29. ..Bxe5  30.Rf8 checkmate
29...gxf6 30.Ng6+ Kg8 31.Re7+ and black resigned after the fatal blow dealt by this double check as 31. .. Bf7 32.Rxf7 Rf8  33.Re7+ and black cannot stop the onslaught.
Diagram 2


Black to play and win
1.. Qxg4 2.fxg4 Rxg2+ 3.Kh1 Rh2+ 4.Kg1 Rag2 checkmate.

Liked the story?

  • 0

    Happy
  • 0

    Amused
  • 0

    Sad
  • 0

    Frustrated
  • 0

    Angry