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This week's problem is a selfmate, by a man more famous for his endgame studies, but who
was a superlative all-round composer. As with many selfmates, White has a great degree
of control, with Black having few legal moves. It looks as though there might be a
possible mate involving forcing Black to play cxb5 or c6-c5 discovered check, but how to
do it exactly?
We kick off with 1.Rd8! and Black has three legal moves. After 1...Bg6 there follows
2.Qc1+ Bc2 (forced) 3.Sb5 and Black's only legal move is 3 ..cxb5#, thanks to the fact
that the Rb3 is pinned.
After 1...Bf7 there is 2.Sxe6+ Bxe6 and now that Black has been forced to take control
of b3, we have 3.Rb5+ cxb5#.
Finally, 1...Bd7. Now there is no way Black can be forced to take control of b3, but
instead, 2.Qd4+! Kxd4 3.Kb4 leaves his bishop pinned, so his only legal move is
3...c5#. A magical piece of chessboard sleight of hand by Kubbel.
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.