Smothering the King

Published on Friday, May 15, 2015 in |

In addition to the smothered mate, in which the mated king is unable to move because all the surrounding squares are occupied by his own pieces, there are a lot of mating patterns in which the king is only partly smothered by his own pieces.

Let’s have a look at the next diagram and try to figure out how to exploit that Black’s king is almost smothered.

The solution is visible by selecting the text between the two brackets.

[ 1. Rh4+ gxh4 2. g4# ]

Remember that if you succeed in taking away all the surrounding squares of your opponent’s king a simple check will be sufficient to win the game. Taking away these squares can be done by attacking these squares or by forcing your opponent to place his pieces on these squares.

The next chess lesson is about finding combinations.

Original 3 responses to “Smothering the King”

  1. Arthur Marquis
    October 7th, 2008 at 11:00 pm
    Sorry I am just learning annotation, but I was curious about your solution….
    Why not
    white pawn to g4 forcing the king to h4 then bring white queen to h2 on the diagonal? same amount of moves
  2. Chess Teacher
    October 8th, 2008 at 5:32 pm
    There is no white queen on the board. The queen on c7 is a black queen.
    I think that I have to replace the Leipzig chess set by another one.
  3. Chess Teacher
    October 8th, 2008 at 6:00 pm
    I am now using the Alpha chess set.

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