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Key Krackers Print E-mail
By David L. Brown   
June 9, 2006

Key Krackers, the legendary Chess Life column, is now on the web. The diagrams are twice as big as they were in Chess Life, so you no longer have the excuse that you could find the mate, if only you could see the position. So get out your brain, (not your computer's) and solve, solve, solve! In fact, if you're the first person to submit twelve correct answers to David.L Brown, you'll win a free, autographed copy of U.S. Problem Anthology, a problem collection compiled by Edgar Holladay.

New Solvers: In Directmates (commonly known as Mate in Two, Three, etc.) White always moves first. Only the key-move defeats every black defense in the stipulated number of moves. You should list only these keys, no variations!

In Helpmates, Black always moves first, and both sides cooperate or "help" to mate the Black King. All moves must be legal. Full length solution(s) to helpmates must always be given by the solver. The best way to understand helpmates is to study past issues with solutions.

Long-time solvers: Please note that these numbers correspond to 2630-2641 in Brown's ouevre. Click here for Chess Life's April Solutions. May Solutions will appear with the web publication of the July Chess Life. (c. July 10)

E-mail your solutions to: [email protected] by July 15. A perfect score this month is 42.

1.K. Makovsky
Palecek 1881
Mate in Two

Michael Lipton
Miniature C.P. 1981
Mate in Two

3.J. Klemensiewicz
La Strategie 1926
Mate in Two

Eric M. Hassberg
New York Post 1945
Mate in Two

5.Dr. Hauke Reddmann
Schwalbe 1986
Mate in Two

Andrei Lobusov
Sovietski Krim 1987
Mate in Two

S. Lehner
Deutsche Schach. 1864
Mate in Three

Aleksandr Varitskij
2nd HM Magadanski Kom. 1987
Mate in Four

Michael Herzberg

3rd Pr. Lucke Memorial 1987-88
Mate in Seven


Christer Jonsson
1st Pr. Lahtis 10 JT 2003
Helpmate in Two (Three Solutions)


Christer Jonsson

2nd Pr. Idee & Form 1994-95
Helpmate in Two (Three Solutions)

Henry Tanner
1st HM Diagrammes 1992
Helpmate in three B)c4P to d3