LESSONS

Basic Checkmates

King, Bishop and Knight vs King

We now come to the most difficult of the basic checkmates.

The final Key position to force is the black King into the corner of the same square colour as our Bishop. In this example we have forced the black King to move into the white coloured corner ie the same as our white squared Bishop.



In the above diagram we have just played Bd7 creating the KEY position.
Remember this configuration of pieces as it will be repeated on our journey.

From here it is forced checkmate. 15... Ka8 16.Nc5 Kb8 17.Na6+ Ka8 and 18.Bc6#

So how did we get here? Well lets suppose we have forced the black King to the edge of the board (we will come back later on how to do this) and our opponent knows they must keep away from the mating corner. Then the following position is likely to occur with the black King in the 'wrong' corner.



Now our task is to drive the black King into the 'correct' corner.
1.Nf7+ Kg8 2.Bf5 Kf8 3.Bh7 and we arrive at our KEY position.



We can now follow some simple rules;
  1. Move our Knight in a W shape f7-e5-d7-c5-b7
  2. Move our King along the 6th rank f6-e6-d6-c6-b6
  3. Use our Bishop to prevent the black King either doubling back or escaping.
In preference this is also the order to make the moves. So we move the Knight if it can safely do so along its path and if not we move the King along its path and if neither can move then we move our Bishop.



eg the following moves may occur;
3...Ke8 4.Ne5 Kf8 5.Nd7+ Ke8 6.Ke6 Kd8 7.Kd6 Ke8 8.Bg6+ Kd8 9.Bf7
and after these 2 Knight moves, 2 King moves and 2 Bishop moves we reach



the KEY position again. Now all we have to do is to repeat the process;

9... Kc8 10.Nc5 Kd8 11.Nb7+ Kc8 12.Kc6 Kb8 13.Kb6 Kc8 14.Be6+ Kb8 15.Bd7
and we are back at the KEY.



and 15... Ka8 16.Nc5 Kb8 17.Na6+ Ka8 and 18.Bc6# is checkmate !!



of course black might not follow these exact moves but the basic rules follow and are worth repeating;
  1. Move our Knight in a W shape f7-e5-d7-c5-b7
  2. Move our King along the 6th rank f6-e6-d6-c6-b6
  3. Use our Bishop to prevent the black King either doubling back or escaping.
In preference this is also the order to make the moves. So we move the Knight if it can safely do so along its path and if not we move the King along its path and if neither can move then we move our Bishop.

To practice this method with all of black's option here are a few links or downloads. We recommend using Chess Position Trainer which can be downloaded for a free 30 day trial.

KBN Mate

Browser Link
.html
Chessbase file
 .cbv
Game Reader files
 .pgn
Chess Position Trainer
 .cpt


Driving the King to the edge



Tournaments





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