Puzzles are great for training the mind to see patterns and recognize great opportunities. Here is a puzzle for the week in which I found the second best solution. When I found out it wasn’t the best, it blew my mind. Check it out: it is black to move. Spend some time on it before scrolling below the puzzle to see some solutions.
It didn’t take me long to find the move 1. … Qa4+. White’s only response is 2. Qa2 for an interposition. The line might continue 2. … Nbxa2 3. bxc3 Nxc3+ 4. Kb2 Qxd4 with a clear line to victory for black.
What I missed, was the mate in 3! Hard to see since it entails sacrificing not one, but two of black’s pieces!
Here is the line: 1. … Qd1+ 2. Rxd1 Nc2+ 3. Nxc2 Rxd1#. White is forced to take our queen and knight in both cases and leaves black with the knight-rook combo for checkmate. Brilliant, yes?
Hope you enjoyed this puzzle as much as I did.