Chess Puzzle of the Week (179): Solution

Hjartarson – Andersen Reykjavik 2022
White to play

In this position GM Johann Hjartarson continued with 54. e7? and the game was drawn some 35 moves later.

Sadly for him he missed an extraordinary and spectacular win. 54. Qf7+!! Nxf7 55. exf7+ Kh7! (or 55… Kf8 56. Ng6+) 56. fxe8B!! when White’s three pieces will vanquish the black queen. If you promote to a queen or rook Black forces stalemate after either Qg2+ or Qh1+, while promotion to a knight fails to defend the rook.

A queen sacrifice followed by a very rare forced underpromotion to a bishop because a queen or rook would allow a counter queen sacrifice: amazing. This is exactly why we all love chess so much.

I’ve written a post about underpromotions here and you might also find this post of interest.