Logic & Math Puzzles | Chess Puzzle 04

Can you find the best move?

Instructions: White to play and mate in 2. Try your solution on the board.


Slide left to see the answer, but don’t do it right away. Think about it first!


Black has a whole range of powerful threats, including 1 …Nxd3 and 1 …Bxb7,so White’s first move has to be fairly blint. A sacrifice may be necessary.


The correct answer is b7e4. Since Black threatens to play 1…Nxd3 or 1…Bxb7, White’s first move must carry a strong threat. Bearing in mind that sacrifices are appealing to both composer and solver alike, one might be led to try 1 Be4! This multiple bishop sacrifice is the spectacular solution. The powerful threat is 2 Qxe7 mate. If Black plays 1…Kxe4, then 2 Re3 is mate; 1…Rxe4 allows either 2 Rd5 or 2 Qd5 mate, while if Black plays 1…Nxe4 or 1…Bxe4 then the square e4 is blocked and White can mate by 2 Bf4. Thus the sacrifice can’t be accepted, but other moves are no help, for example 1…Bd6/Rd6/Rd7 2 Qf5 mate, or 1…e6 2 Qf4 mate.

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