Solitaire Chess: Carlsen Crushes

Jessica Prescott 1 Nov 19, 2013 10832 reads
Solitaire Chess: Carlsen, Mrs Jessica E Prescott

Hola!  Welcome to the latest Solitaire Quiz.  You will need a pencil and paper for this one.  We are going to look at an amazing game played by Magnus Carlsen (Norwegian Wonderboy!) against Jon Ludvig Hammer, who is going to get hammered into the board.  Carlsen proves, in this Under 14 years old event, that he knows his tactics and mating patterns.  Do you?

Magnus Carlsen is the highest rated active player in the World!  Don't you think he should challenge Vishy Anand for the World Championships?

This is the young Magnus around the time of this game.  He is a few years older now.

Carlsen has black in this game.

The game begins with the Reti opening.  Black is very patient while waiting for white to get set up before he strikes.




1.  What would you do here?  A)  Bg4   B) Be6   C)  e5

Write your answer down before scrolling!  When you are sure of your answer, then you can go to the next position.




2.  At move 11, do you think black should play A) Qg5  B)  dxe5   C) Bxe5?

No peeksies!


3.  On move 14, what do you recommend for black?  A) Nxc1  B) Bxg4  C) h5

Write it down Carlsenites!




4.  Next, A) Rfe8  B) Rae8  C) h5?

...almost done!




5.)  The Carlsen Crush!  Can you find it?  Click on the puzzle below.





Did you find Qh5+!  What a nice sac!

Bonus:  What is the name of the checkmate that Carlsen used?


Answers:  Time to tally your points!

1. A) Bg4 earns you 2 points.  White might just kick you with h3 after this move.  Always look at what your opponent might do next.  Which brings us to B) Be6?  0 points.  This invites white to fork you with pawn d5.  Oops!  Don't develop just to develop.  C) e5 is best.  5 points.  Somehow black needs to break white's strong center.

2. A) Qg5 is a very strong move!  5 points.  This threatens mate, and skewers the knight to the bishop.  You will still win a piece.  When you make a threat or check in between a capture back it is called "zwischenzug" or "intermezzo".  (Pronounced like "zvish-en-zoog" and "in-ter-met-so".)  B) dxe5 will block in your nice fianchettoed bishop.  2 points.  C) Bxe5 also 2 points.  Yes you win your piece back, but your bishop can be kicked with Nf3 next.

3.  A) Nxc1 gets you 3 points. It's fine but your next option is so much better!  B) Bxg4 is a solid 5 points.  Break open the castled king!  C) h5 only 1 point.  White can play a4 and attack your queen and she will have a hard time holding onto her knight and staying in the action.

4.  A) Rfe8 rooks on open files, 4 points.  B) Rae8 rooks who haven't moved yet on open files, 5 points.  C) h5 2 points.  It's threatening, but it doesn't work because of a4 again.

5.  Qh5+ 10 points!  after pawn takes black has Rh4#.  

BONUS:  Anastasia's Mate.  100 points.

30 points possible.  How many did you get?

Tip of the week:  Practice your tactics and mating patterns so you'll be able to recognize them when they appear in your games!