Friday, 12 November 2010

Junior Club Week 6: Removing the guard and deflection

Last week we looked at the overworked piece.
Removing the guard is a similar idea in that a piece's defender is removed, in this case taken to allow the second attacked piece, now undefended, to also be captured.

If you are attacking a defended piece look to see if you can remove its defender.

In the diagram below white has developed his pieces correctly, unfortunately in chess we have to be on guard for tricks at all times.  White's bishop on g5 is defended by the guard on f3.  Any ideas?

Did you spot 1....Bxf3, 2.Bxf3 Qxg4, see below.  Black wins a piece.

Sometimes an attacked piece is guarded by another piece, but that defending piece is also under attack, but by a higher valued piece.  Normally you would not take a knight(3) with a rook(5), but if this allows the second piece to be removed you will have gained material.  An example of these hard to spot removal of the guard cab be seen below.

After 1...Rxf3 2.gxf3 Rxg5, see below, black has gained material.

There is a third scenario when removing a guard.  Often we can not capture a defending piece, but we can move it from its defending square.  Take a look at the diagram below.

The black king is defending his queen.  A lazy move by white is queen takes queen, we must always look for the best move.  Remember "If you are attacking a defended piece look to see if you can remove its defender."  We can remove the guard using another powerful tactic called deflection.  Instead of capturing the guard we can drive it off.  Look at the diagram again after 1.Rg7+! the black king has a choice, capture the rook and neglect its guard duties, or hide, in this case on e8 leading to checkmate.

After 1...Kxg7 the black queen is undefended and 2.Qxe7+ wins the queen for a rook, see below.

With the introduction of deflection we have stepped up.  Our chess knowledge now contains enough tricks to play at a very high level.  Deflection can be very powerful especially combined with other ideas.

In the below position it is black to move.  Black is winning, but he needs to find a way to queen the pawn on b2.  Take a look.  Think which piece is guarding against 1...b1Q?  Can that piece be deflected?

Did you spot 1...Rc5+ 2.Rxc5 b1Q?  If you did you are progressing well...

Now its time for the weekly puzzle this week from "303 Tactical chess puzzles" Wilson & Alberston.
Try to find a deflection trick.  Be warned this solution combines different ideas.
I will publish the answer with my next post.  If you can't wait for then and can't find the answer email me 

Contact me at 

  •  Spot any mistakes with this post, 
  •  Would like to help run Darlington Junior club 
  •  Want any advice on creating a junior club
  •  Have any coaching ideas
Last week's puzzle was: 

Black's pieces seem to protect each other, but the truth is they are all dependent on each other, which means they are all overworked.  White can demonstrate this with
1.Rxh7.  Black now has two choices
A. 1...Rxh7 2.Rxg8
B. 1...Rxg1 2.Rxh8 
In both cases black has lost a piece. 

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