Engine Snacks! Pins, pins and more pins!

November 6, 2021 Matthew Sadler No comments exist

This super-quick article is in our Engine Snacks series! Just a beautiful little tactical exercise this time demonstrating some awesome geometry! Spotting an idea like this quickly in a game could net you a brilliant point!

Starting position

This game is not from the TCEC but from an engine match that I’m running on my own hardware (see “The Silicon Road to Chess Improvement” for an explanation of how to do that!) between Komodo Dragon 2.5 and Koivisto 7.0. White is a pawn up, but out of the corner of my eye I spotted the Black attempt 1…Nxf4 2.Qxf4 Rxe5 when 3.dxe5 Bxe5 pins the queen to the king!

Position after 3…Bxe5

Well… White has a brilliant refutation:


Position after 4.Rxg7+!!

when after 4…Kxg7 5.Bc3! Kf6 6.Kg2!

Position after 6.Kg2!

When Black is powerless against threats such as Qxh6+ and Qh4+.

Black has one more attempt. Instead of 4…Kxg7, Black can try 4…Kh8!?

Position after 4…Kh8!?

However the brilliant 5.Rg8+ Kh7 6.Rh8+!!

Position after 6.Rh8+!!

does the trick as 6…Kxh8 loses to 7.Bc3

Koivisto spotted this of course and carried on playing solidly, but a brilliant hidden possibility nonetheless!

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