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Last week's problem was a bit of a stinker, from a solving point of view, so this
week, we have a relatively easy 2-mover, but a great problem at that. Viktor
Chepizhny, one of the world's finest living composers, celebrated his 80th birthday
last month, and this collaboration with another immortal of Soviet problem
composition is one of his numerous prizewinners.
The experienced solver's eye is naturally drawn to the potential battery along the
4th rank. We have two set mates: 1...Rxc2+ 2.Qxc2# and 1...fxe3 2.Rg4#.
There are several minor tries (1.Sdc6? b5!; 1.Se6? Rc5!; 1.Sb5? Rc3!), but the main
one is 1.Sd3? (Threat 2.Sxf2#) Now the two set mates are changed: 1...Rxc2+
2.Sdxc2#; and 1...fxe3 2.Sdc6#; There is also a new line 1...Kxe3 2.Sc5, but not
mate after the defence 1...h1S!
The key is 1.Sb3! Threat 2.Sd2# with the variations 1...Rxc2+ 2.Sbxc2# 1...fxe3
2.Sbc6#; 1...Kxe3 2.Sc5#; 1...Rcd8 2.Sd5#; 1...Red8 2.Re5#; 1...Re3 2.Qxe8#
What we have is a 3x2 Zagoruiko, i.e. changed mates following two defences over
three phases of play.
Any comments or questions on this problem should be addressed to
Steve Giddins (our Libarian and Archivist) using the 'Contact'
item in the menu on the left.