Final Award in Quick Composing TT-267 | Окончательные итоги блицконкурса ТТ-267

April Fool’s Check | Первоапрельский шах

Theme | Тема

64 entries were received from 32 authors representing 14 countries | На конкурс поступило 64 композиций от 32 авторов из 14 стран

Preface | Предисловие

EN <-> RU

«April Fool’s Check» is an excellent naming for a theme in which the White attack a Black King immediately on 1st move. There is an invisibly subtle irony here, which corresponds to the Day of Humor, which traditionally celebrated on April, 1.
Tireless inventor S. Loyd was 16 year old, when he gave the world a problem P1 (1.Sg4+!), in which his ironic nature was clearly manifested. Moreover, the novice problemist clearly sought to shock not so much the Black king as his contemporaries: solvers and composers. After all, starting a decision with a check was already considered “not comme il faut” then.
Why does this miniature continue to delight chess lovers for more than a century and a half? At first, after “loud” key there is bK star – 1...Kh1 / Kh3 / Kf3 / Kf1; at second, White answers are very non-trivial – 2.Qh2+! / Sh2! / Qc2! / Ra8!
Thus, the young American openly rebelled against the dogma that allegedly "you cannot start a solution with a check to the Black king".

And a small addition to this preface.
P2. *1...Kc6 2.Qe8# (A), 1...Ke6 2.Qc8# (B); 1.Sb6+? Kc6 2.Qc8# (B), 1...Ke6 2.Qd6# (C), 1...Ke7! 1.Sf6+! Kc6 2.Qd6# (С), 1...Ke6 2.Qe8# (А)
An arbitrator M. Lipton (Great Britain) gave enthusiastic comments to this cycle, complaining only about the lack of an answer to 1...Qxd4+. Although it is quite obvious that this mechanism is exactly the same “working material for threemover”, which will be written about below in the comments to the excluded problems.
Another aspect is also interesting! Perhaps the arbitrator thought that the found mechanism with the cycle of mates AB-BC-CA is unique for the twomover. But almost at the same time in the Riga magazine "Shahmaty" the problem of the Soviet composer E. Livshic yacpdb/32973 appeared. In this problem the cycle was achieved without checks on 1st move…

Another notable example for ТТ-267 theme:
P3. 1.Re4+! d5 2.exd6#!! (e.p.), 1...Ke7 2.exf6#!!, 1...Qb3 2.Qxd7#, 1...Kf5 2.Rf4#
As you can see, modern authors have by no means forgotten the tricks of Sam Loyd! Looking at the distinction awarded, one can guess that a key with check not only did not embarrass the arbiter with the opening move (I wonder who it was?), but rather the opposite: he even delighted the check! Again, the whole point here is in the subsequent game, which fascinates.
Conclusion: a check by an opening move is not only possible, but sometimes even necessary, if it contributes to the strengthening of the paradox or follows from the plot conceived by the author. In this case, the "April Fool's Check" (or the April Fool's theme) will help us all...

P1 - S. Loyd
«The Chess Monthly», 1857
1st Prize
P2 - J. Rice
TT-37 Problem, 1962
1st Prize
P3 - An. Kuznetsov
D. Kanonik MT, 1993
1st Prize

Introduction | Вступление

EN <-> RU

Totally from TT Director Aleksey Oganesjan (grateful for his trust) I received 64 problems: 34 twomovers and 30 threemovers. (There was another #2, it was nominated for 1st prize, but was withdrawn by the author. It is the author's right...).
In the classical S. Loyd’s problem, the loud opening move 1.Sg4+! does not interfere with a positive perception just because the subsequent game is saturated with various tactical nuances. Therefore, resorting to such a powerful weapon – key with check – the author needs to justify the presence of a “strong” key by a subsequent game. This can be achieved in different ways, for example, by the unusualness of the ideological concept or the paradoxical nature of the introduction itself. Otherwise, key with check will be perceived as just... rudeness.
From these positions I also estimated competitive works. I didn’t consider problems which lacked a clear (i. e. understandable to the arbitrator) ideological concept. And then the ideological concept itself was evaluated for its artistic or other value (historical, technical, etc.). As a result, only 8 tasks (12.5% of the number of those submitted) were noted, the plots and ideas of which best meet the above criteria.
By tradition, a few words about some excluded compositions.

- No 1 (Ke1-Kc1). An illegal White castling is a good idea, but this nuance does not affect the essence of the solution;
- No 4 (Kc1-Kf4), No 25 (Kf8-Kc5), No 30 (Kb8-Ke5), No 38 (Ka6-Ke5), No 44 (Kd5-Kg5), No 46 (Kh2 Ke4), No 49 (Kf4-Kd5), No 64 (Kd8-Kg8). In twins of No 25 there are two sacrifices of Queen on different squares. Looks good, but it's just working material for threemovers! The same applies to the rest of the listed problems;
- No 17 (Kf7-Ke5), No 24 (Kg5-Ke5), No 32 (Kc8-Kf5). Multiple defenses on the same square after “loud” sacrifice. But:
- a first task in this thematics: yacpdb/26703 – eight variations;
- next step: yacpdb/474522, yacpdb/203230 – key with check but without capture;
- absolute task: yacpdb/169722 – nine variations;
- without check on key there were 8 variations: yacpdb/32901 and yacpdb/348910.
- No 29 (Ka1-Ka3). Interesting retro-idea with two Black corrections. But in the variation 0…Bxg7+ 1.Bxg7 ~ 2.Bb2# a key (1.Bxg7) is without check;
- No 23 (Kb2-Kd4), No 37 (Ka1-Kd5). Five defenses on the same square + mates with pins. But all these can be realized without check key, for example yacpdb/561835 – six defenses on the same square + mates with pins.

- No 6 (Ke5-Kc6). Originally but too simple;
- No 7 (Kd4-Kd6). Trivial promotions in Queens. There is old miniature with promotions in Bishop and in Rook – yacpdb/56524;
- No 11 (Kc5-Kf4). Duplex for direct moves is an exotic;
- No 22 (Kb6-Kc4), No 57 (Kh6-Kf2). Unequal twins;
- No 26 (Kh5-Ke5), No 45 (Kb5-Kd4), No 52 (Ka7-Kd7), No 55 (Kg6-Ke4), No 56 (Ka3-Ke2). «Twin» concepts leave a feeling of artificiality;
- No 34 (Kd2-Kd5). bK star. But the White play on 2nd move (it’s a CENTRE of the problem) is not impressive;
- No 43 (Ka5-Kd4). In fact, this is an extended twomover;
- No 31 (Kc3-Kg3), No 54 (Kc1-Kg2). Threefold (!) repetition of 2nd White move.

I wish you all a cheerful mood and God bless you!

Award is the following | Отличия распределились следующим образом

1st Prize - No 51
Dragan Stojnić
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
2nd Prize - No 40
Srećko Radović
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
3rd Prize - No 28
Srećko Radović
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022

1st Prize - No 51, Dragan Stojnić (Serbia) B3R3/Q7/1P2R3/3pPPP1/3Pk3/N2N2PK/4PP2/8

1.Qg7? (A) Kxf5 2.Qg6#, 1...Kxd4! (x)
1.Qa5? (B) Kxd4 2.Qb4#, 1...Kxf5! (y)
Retro: Last move is 0.Rc6-e6+, d7-d5!
(0...Pc6xBd5? - dark Bishop outside!; 0...d6-d5?? - illegal setting)
1.exd6 e.p.++!
1...Kxd4 (x) 2.Qg7# (A)
1…Kxf5 (y) 2.Qa5# (B)

Vladimirov theme in ideal form with Black BK+BP minimal matherial! The first regular En-passant-Vladimirov mechanism without WK on 5th rank (very difficult for realization)! (author.)

The author found an original (and maybe unique) scheme for Vladimirov theme – one of the most paradixocal and difficult themes (1.A? a!, 1.B? b! – 1...a 2.A#, 1...b 2.B#). Thematic key via e. p. looks effectively. Retro-justification of previous Black move 0...d7-d5 is also attractive! Excellent finding! And a shining example of “April Fool's theme”...
EN <-> RU

2nd Prize - No 40, Srećko Radović (Serbia) 8/qpK5/1Q3pnp/1R6/4k3/Rp1N2p1/2Pp3B/1n1B4

1...Kd5 2.Qd6+! Kc4 3.Qd3#
1...Ke5 2.Sa6+! Ke4(f4) 3.Ra4#
1...Kf5 2.Qe6+! Kf4 3.Sd3#, 2...Kg5 3.Qg4#
1...Kf4 2.Qxf6+! Ke3 3.Bg1#
1...Ke3 2.Bg1+! Kf4 3.Qxf6#
1...Kd4 2.Rb4+! Kc3 3.Raxb3#, 2...Ke3 3.Bg1#, 2...Ke5 3.Qe6#, 2...Kd5 3.Qd6#
The author shows creative approach to the implementation of the thematic task! The six-flight-giving-key is already worthy of surprise. But the author was managed to organize different (without repetitive moves) White play in 6 variations. Fantastic! Unfortunately a “degree” of paradox is slightly decreased in view of initial absence of answers for checks 1...Qxb6/Qb8+. And yet, such record ideas for a long time cut into the memory. For example, I immediately remembered Anatoly Kuznetsov's twomover from the USSR-Netherland match (1956, 1st Prize): yacpdb/13788.
EN <-> RU

3rd Prize - No 28, Srećko Radović (Serbia) 1b1NR1b1/pP1p1P1q/P1PkPpp1/BK3P2/4B3/2p4p/2P2p2/4Qr2

1...Kc7 2.Qxc3 – 3.cxd7#, 2...d5 3.Qg3#, 2...d6 3.Ba5#, 2...dxc6+ 3.Qxc6#, 2...dxe6 3.Sxe6#
1...Ke5 2.Qe3 – 3.exd7#, 2...d5 3.Bd3#, 2...d6/Bd6 3.Bxc3#, 2...dxc6+ 3.Sxc6#, 2...dxe6 3.Rxe6#
, 2...Qxf7/Bxf7 3.exf7#
Four changes after Pickaninny defences. Check-key with flight giving. (author.)

Threemover task with doubled pickaninny! In #3-genre this task was realized repeatedly but with a play of two Pawns: yacpdb/48284, yacpdb/268147, yacpdb/329235.
But with a play of single Pawns (with change-mates!) – apparently for the first time. In #2-genre this theme is developed in more detail, for example: yacpdb/11524, yacpdb/30287.
EN <-> RU
Special Hon. mention - No 27
Srećko Radović
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
1st Commendation - No 50
Michael Lütt
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
2nd Commendation - No 2
Aleksandr Tyunin
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022

Special Honorable mention - No 27, Srećko Radović (Serbia) 8/3K2Q1/3N1Pn1/4k1pn/3Rp1pR/8/2Bb1PPP/B4q2

1...exf3 e.p. 2.Sf7#
1...gxf3 e.p. 2.Rhxe4#
1...Qxf4 2.Rxd2#
1...Bxf4 2.Rd1#
1...Kxf4 2.Rxe4#
1...gxf4 2.Rxh5#
1...Shxf4 2.f7#
1...Sgxf4 2.Qxg5#
Six captures on the same square f4 and two e.p.-captures on f3 – looks nicely. But in ideological terms, this is just a repetition of yacpdb/29133. Special distinction is for realization of well-known concept in new scheme.
EN <-> RU

1st Commendation - No 50, Michael Lütt (Germany) 7Q/4B3/1N2P3/1qp5/6P1/k3P3/8/3NK3

a) diagram: 1.Qa1+! Kb3 2.Qb2#, 1...Kb4 2.Qc3#
b) Ka3->c6: 1.Qa8+! Kc7 2.Sd5#, 1...Kxb6 2.Bd8#
c) Ka3->e4: 1.Qh1+! Ke5 2.Qd5#, 1...Kd3 2.Qh7#
The author’s idea – an attack for bK from corner squares. Not difficult but original for the set theme. This is the only problem with twins that I included in the award.
EN <-> RU

2nd Commendation - No 2, Aleksandr Tyunin (Russia) 8/1p1p1B2/1P1k4/2N3BR/KP6/2N5/8/2R5

1.Be8? Kc6 (a) 2.Rh6# (A), 1...Ke5! (b)
1.Sd5? (F) Kc6 (a) 2.Se4# (B), 1...Ke5! (b)
1.Se2? Ke5 (b) 2.Be7# (D), 1...Kc6! (a)
1.Rd1+? Ke5 (b) 2.Rd5# (C), 1...Kc6! (a)
1.S5e4+! (B) (S3e4+?)
1...Kc6 (a) 2.Sd5# (F) (2.Rh6+? (A))
1...Ke5 (b) 2.Be3# (E) (2.Be7+? (D))
The disadvantage of such constructions is their sketchiness, due to the lack of counterplay by Black. But still I decided to give a distinction, since White has a large choice of attacking continuations, which contain elements of change of mates and move-functions.
EN <-> RU
3rd Commendation - No 62
Darya Motuz
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
4th Commendation - No 58
Anastasia Bazhan
TT-267, SuperProblem, 01-04-2022
2nd Prize - No 40 (version)
Srećko Radović
TT-267, SuperProblem, 18-04-2022

3rd Commendation - No 62, Darya Motuz (Russia) 8/7N/8/2K2QP1/5B1p/5k2/1N6/8

1...Ke2 2.Qg2+ Ke1 3.Bd2#,
1...Ke4 2.Qg4 h3 3.Sf6#,
1...Kf2 2.Bd2 Ke2 3.Qg2#, 2...Kg1 3.Be3#
1...K:f4 2.Sd3+ Ke4 3.Sf6#
“Building of mates” (i. e. construction of mating pictures without any tactical, graphic or other ideas) that is realized very skillfully.
EN <-> RU

4th Commendation - No 58, Anastasia Bazhan (Russia) 3K4/8/2BR1Q2/1pkp4/8/8/8/8

1.Qh4? – 2.Kc7 – 3.R:d5#, 2...d4 3.Q:d4#, 1...K:d6 2.Qe7+ K:c6 3.Qc7#, 1...Kb6!
1.R:d5+? Kc4 2.Qb2 b4 3.Qc2#, 1...Kb6 2.R:b5+ Ka6(a7) 3.Qa1#, 1...Kb4!
1...Kb6 2.B:d5+ Ka7 3.Qc7#
1...K:d6 2.Bd7 – 3.Qc7#, 2…d4 3.Q:d4#
This problem is suitable for children's solver contests.
EN <-> RU

2nd Prize - No 40 (version), Srećko Radović (Serbia) K4N2/1n5P/1p6/3k2B1/p3Np1n/P4P2/1QR4b/q4R2

1...Kc4 2.Qb4+!
(2.Sb1+? Kd3!; 2.Se2+? Kd5!) 2...Kd3 3.Qe4#
1...Kc5 2.Sb1+!
(2.Qb5+? Kd4!) 2...Kd5(d6) 3.Rd1#
1...Kc6 2.Qb5+!
(2.Sb1+? Sc5!) 2...Kd6 3.Se4#, 2...Kc7 3.Qd7#
1...Kd6 2.Qxb6+!
(2.Sb5+? Kd5!) 2...Ke5 3.Qf6#
1...Ke5 2.h8Q+!
(2.Qb6? Qxc3!) 2...Kf5 3.Qf6#, 2...Kd6 3.Qxb6#
1...Kd4 2.Rd2+!
(2.Qb4+? Ke5!; 2.Se2+? Kd5!) 2...Kc4 3.Qb4#, 2...Kc5 3.Qb5#, 2...Ke5 3.Rd5#, 2...Ke3 3.Sd5#
Version without initial absence of answers for checks.
EN <-> RU

Arbitrator: Igor Agapov
April 1, 2022
Арбитр: Игорь Агапов