Puzzles & games


Bridge | 09 January 2020

The new year is a daunting prospect in terms of the sheer amount of bridge taking place. Rather like buses, all the England trials seem to be coming at once: the European open, women’s and mixed, the Lady Milne, the various Olympiad trials… my head’s swimming just thinking about it. Unlike most of the hardcore



‘Every day is different’, people like to say about their jobs. For the world’s best chess players, that’s only partly true. The game will be different, but the day will look much the same, and so will the international hotel room. In fact, professional players love a routine: they keep their energy for the game,


Trochaics | 9 January 2020

In Competition No. 3130 you were invited to add to Sam Leith’s lines about Boris Johnson, written in the metre of Longfellow’s ‘The Song of Hiawatha’: ‘Mayor of London Boris Johnson/ Much admired the lady’s pole-dance/ Mentored well her start-up business…’ Though Longfellow has long fallen out of fashion, in his day he was a


2439: More nuts

‘10/17’ give the first three words of a statement (in ODQ) made by a famous 48/21. His works include 1A/23D (four words in total) and The 44. His forename is the remaining unclued light; the puzzle’s title suggests his surname. The fourth word (hyphened) of the statement will appear diagonally in the grid and must

Crossword solution

to 2437: Sketchy

The unclued lights are PAINTING terms.   First prize Martina Fabian, Bourne End, Bucks Runners-up Phillip Wickens, Faygate, West Sussex; A.H. Harker, Oxford


no. 586

Carlsen–Nakamura, December 2019. In the decisive playoff game, Carlsen played 1 Nxf7+ and won quickly. But there was a mate in 3 available. What is the first move? Answers should be sent to ‘Chess’ at The Spectator by Tuesday 14 January or via email to victoria@spectator.co.uk. There is a prize of £20 for the first