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The key, 1.Qd7, is mediocre, but justified by the difficulty of the idea the composer is showing. It prevents Black from gaining a flight at d6, and stops a potential pin of the c7 knight. There are two threats, 2.Be4+ and 2.Be6+, which place a guard on d5 in preparation for 3.Sa6 mate. Black can defend by capturing the bishop, and each defence is met by a different move of the c2 pawn.
After 1...Qxf5 the queen can no longer attack c4, so 2.cxb3 threatening 3.Rc4 (2...d5 3.Sa6)
After 1...Sexf5 Black no longer has 2...Sexc6, so 2.c3, threatening 3.cxd4 (2...dS any 3.Rb5; 2...d5, Bd5 3.Sa6; 2...Bc4 3.Rxc4)
1...Sdxf5 makes d4 available to the white pawn, so 2.cxd3 threatening 3.d4 (2...d5, Bd5,Sd5 3.Sa6, 2...Bc4 3.Rxc4; 2...Sxc6 3.Qxc6, 2...Rxd3 3.Sxd3)
Danish composer Lars Larsen celebrated his 98th birthday on 9th March.
Dafydd Johnston: The situation of the white pawn on c2 signals the Albino theme, but the four thematic variations still come as quite a surprise, and make up for the rather tame key necessary to achieve the task.
Composers are reminded that the closing date for entries to the C.J.Morse Award for 2-move tasks and records is 31st March. For
details see here.
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