World Solving 2019
the home championship
My budget, severely cut by the "marchers-sic", having forbidden me to travel and stay in Vilnius (Lithuania), I limited myself to doing the world championship "in room".
100% for Kasper Piorun, whom I personally congratulated in Łowicz 2011 and Ostróda 2015, who seemed to be on his way to win. It is not surprising that a player with 2656 zelo points solves 3 (difficult, but not inhuman) studies perfectly, as he did.
The most interesting to me was the 2nd one, of which I confess I did not find the amazing 6th move. One wonders why the official correction stops at the 8th, omitting a switchback and a model mate. In addition, there is a mistake: 8 Kh5 is not a "ZZ" at all. This is further proof that the problemists as a whole do not understand studies and, ipso facto, these latter should be eliminated from this kind of competition.
The 2# test did not embarrass many of the stars. It is clear that they were not composed by Feoktistov. The first one is the most witty, with its 6 trials. The key to the 2nd can be played in tempo, without having understood anything; the check takes 2 minutes. The 3rd (the prettiest) is a mutate, as the scholars say. Four of the five prepared mats are changed.
The 3#'s one hardly more: a white pawn gave me immediately the intuition of the key of the first one. The 2nd one, more difficult, is especially worthwhile because of a very nice sacrifice variation, exploiting an unexpected weakening. Be careful not to forget other variations, more banal but noted just as much! The 3rd has an even more obvious key than the 1st. In a contest, it is recommended, as soon as you dry up a little on the 2nd, to move on to the 3rd, to liquidate it, and thus have all the rest of the time to devote to a single problem.
Helpmate 2# does have 3 related solutions, but you can be wrong about the relationship, and then get stuck on the 3rd one. Helpmate 3# is reminiscent of Mister Jones (wR+wB+pions) but it comes from the ubiquitous "Finnish Caillaud" in our class. It didn't seem very difficult to me, the possibilities are not immense. But one of the solutions is humorous and can escape us in the stress of such a championship. One solution from the 5# helpmate jumped out at me, an Abdu-like ambush (also ubiquitous). The other solution may be due to CNe1, thanks to which the mate will be a model one! In short, a much easier event than the one in Ohrid last year.
Our Michel has a nice zero in the moremovers, like myself at Iaši 2015. It's not fun, but it's better than getting cancer. Murdzia has a similar fall, scoring (like... in Iaši!) a third of the points. Despite this, his title is not lost, he just has to solve the selfmate 5# as usual.
The 4# suffered a lot: only 2 complete solutions (in competition, go directly to the next). Its author had already tortured at the 2018 French Championship. The key is difficult, there are at least 3 more natural moves. The mates are nice: a worthy reward for the courageous! One guesses quickly enough, roughly, the mechanism of the 5#, but one spends a little more time on the threat, which makes one doubt the key. The 6# is a nice combination, all the ideas are there, but you have to sort it out. The fact that you can sense a model mate is a definite help.
Nothing to say about the selfmate 2#. The one in 3 is very pleasant, with a "change of register" reminiscent of G. Anderson: see
Murdzia and Piorun blocked on the one in 5. It was only solved (bravo!) by the popov junior named Popov. And, partially, by the German Tummes, my friend Marjan and another Russian in the cabbage. This is the work of a 3rd Russian whom I did not know, who has only 7 problems and 3 studies in the base of "dear Dmitri". It is solvable (possibly beyond the 50 minutes allotted for the 3 selfmates) provided that you think of directing the right piece to the mate square (which you can guess). And when you have the threat, it gets better. In the nicest variation, all the black pieces are used for mate, which seemed incredible in the diagram.
Piotr Górski (pronounced gourski), the 3rd Polish musketeer (like ours, there are 4 of them with Mišta), snuck in.
He is not a rookie: he was already in Rio 10 years ago, where he beat Piorun (younger by 2 years). He won mainly thanks to the 1st study, the helpmate 5# and the 6#. A very tight championship: 5.3 points separate the 1st from the 11th. It would have been enough, for example, if Piorun had found a single solution to the 3# helpmate for him to win another title.
Only 2 women, the best being Laura Rogule (Latvia) who was especially brilliant in the open. Russian succession with the 3 juniors at the first places. No French succession.
A few words about the open:
I could have known the 1st study, being in the middle of rereading Themes/64: but I'm not yet at 1984! Not very hard, but one doesn't know what to use as a main line: the one of the predecessor Rinck 1926 is good, with repetition of moves, and a trap. Of course, the scale can be discussed (as usual). The other study is a classic by Libourkine that one recognises instantly (the solution comes back... less instantly). Obviously, they had not been selected by "Monsieur Haïdème".
A 2# had been presented in two solving-shows I attended (2007 & 2016), it can also be found here (9th diagram)
In the first 3#, the official correction (and therefore the scoring system) does not mention the essential 1...d2 variation, leading to the prettiest mate. Normal: the opening move is the same as the threat, and so the computer (most of which are slaves) does not mention it. This reminds us of the irritating habit of the beautiful "Chloe" (and others) to give white "threats" even when no black move allows them!
The author of the second 3# is Cyril Dedrle, not to be confused with the great endgame specialist František. He seemed easy to me, although he had some brilliant scalps. But I have always loved Bohemian problems! Practice and don't hesitate to ask me for a tip (to communicate, it's at the top of your screen on the right).
Easy helpmates: the twins in 5 moves are found instantly. Surprising when you learn the name of the recently deceased co-author (rest his soul). The one in 3 has the good taste to have a 2nd solution that looks like the 1st.
Bayersdorfer's 4# dried up Murdzia, Piorun and Pavlov. Our friend Abdel found a little bit of it. One sniffs out the model mates with sacrifice, but the moment of said sacrifice is not obvious... until the "encouraging variant" appears, in a brilliant way. And, before holding the key, one can waste time with a strong, but false, and hardly aesthetic move.
5# : a pleasant Roman theme; incredibly, the one who was going to be world champion the day after dried up.
selfmates: let's skip the Gamni tradi, which paralyses the assembly except...Murdzia. But the one in 3 is just the way I like it. Do you want to solve it? Ask yourself what the b6-pawn is for. And the a4 pawn.
I hope you have fun.
Zostańcie z Bogiem.
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