# Challenging Promotions Composition

White to move and win. 8/2pP1PPP/1b6/1P2BP2/q7/k1n2p2/Pr3Pp1/R3K3 w Q - 0 1

If you are familiar with promotion puzzles, you will know what you are looking for here in a general sense. This is a very special kind of promotion puzzle. After you solve it, can you see what is special about it? One last thing- the FEN is important here- pay attention to it.

No. 1-9
Yancey_Ward

Editor

All promotion puzzles have underpromotions as a theme, but this one was special in that white promoted pawns to all possible pieces from queen right down to a knight. That is unusual.

Alena

The theme was underpromotion.

Yancey_Ward

Editor

The required solution ends at move 11 for white. Well done, so what is very special about this promotions puzzle? In other words, what was the theme?

Alena

5.0-0-0 g1=Q
6.Rxg1 Rc2+
7.Kb1 Rb2+
8.Ka1 Kc2
9.d8=R! Bxd8
10.g8=N! Bb6
11.h8=B! Rb5
12.a3 Rxf5
13.Rb1 Ba5
14.Bd4 Rf8
15.Ne7 Bc7
16.Nd5 Rd8
17.Nb4+ Kd2
18.Rb2+ Ke1
19.Ka2 Kf1
20.Nc2 Ke2
21.Bf6 Rc8
22.Nb4+ Kf1
23.Nd5 Bb8
24.Rxb8 Rxb8
25.c7 Rc8
26.Be5 Kxf2
27.Ne7 Re8
28.c8=Q Rxc8
29.Bd4+ Ke1
30.Nxc8
It's a win for white. I like playing simple positions that's why I made 24th move.

Yancey_Ward

Editor

Alena, it has never been clear to me if black can transpose the moves here to reach this stalemate theme. The main line queens the g-pawn first, and the composer gave 5. ....g1(Q) the exclamation point, so the composer thought 5. ....Rc2+ was probably inaccurate, or led to an uninteresting win for white. However, after 5. .....g1(Q) 6.Rxg1 Rc2+ 7.Kb1 Rb2+ 8.Ka1 Kc2 9.d8(Q) Rb1+ 10.Rxb1 Bd4 11.Qd4 stalemate is the main line. So, from this you need to find the method white must use to avoid the stalemate.

Alena

Yancey, I have found the stalemate but it will be hard to overcome it.
Did you mean this variation?

5.0-0-0 Rc2+
6.Kb1 g1=Q
7.Rxg1 Rb2+
8.Ka1 Kc2
9.d8=Q Bd4
10.Qxd4 Rb1+
11.Rxb1

Yancey_Ward

Editor

You have to think outside the box on this one for both sides of the board. I will give you hint that black has stalemate themes in mind that white has to overcome.

Yancey_Ward

Editor

Alena, you are correct right up to move 5 for white. Black has a better defense than 5. ...Bc7. I will check back tomorrow and see if you have found it.

Alena

At first I thought it was impossible to win. I found five moves and I was stuck. I couldn't guess the sixth move for a long time.

1.f8=Q+ c5
2.bxc6+ Qb4
3.Qxb4+ Kxb4
4.Bxc3+ Kxc3
5.0-0-0 Bc7
6.Rd3+! Kxd3
7.g8=Q Rb8
8.d8=Q+ Rxd8
9.h8=Q Rxg8
10.Qxg8 Ke2
11.f6 Kxf2
12.f7 g1=Q+
13.Qxg1+ Kxg1
14.f8=Q f2
15.Qg7+ Kh1
16.Qf7 Kg2
17.Qxc7 f1=Q+
18.Kb2 Qb5+
19.Ka3
It's a win for white but it's difficult to win.

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