Puzzles & games


Bridge | 23 January 2014

2014 has started with a bang! The second weekend of January saw TGR’s fifth Auction Pairs in which 71 pairs were sold in record time by the world’s most glamorous auctioneer, Ruth Zandberg. This event has become a wild success, with top international players coming from all over the globe. After two days, five pairs


Nimzo style

As promised, this week a victory by chess aficionado Dominic Lawson, former editor of The Spectator. Dominic’s distinguished opponent was Peter Lee, who has been British champion in both chess and bridge — a unique achievement I believe. The following is a fine Nimzowitschian game, not least in the amazing versatility of the Black knights.


Essence of…

In Competition 2832 you were invited to compose what might be a quintessential opening paragraph from the pen of either Graham Greene, Frank Kafka, Jane Austen or Tolkien. It was a tall order to channel such literary genius, but on the whole you did it pretty well. Greene, with his immediately distinctive voice, was by


2146: 4 ÷ 4 = 8

The unclued four-letter words can be paired in a particular way to form the remaining unclued lights (one of two words).   Across   5    Be in contact with a jock’s love-in (6) 10    Isolation of actors Chaney and Wallach by headland (10) 12    Scar on saint is something of a problem

Crossword solution

to 2143: Revising geography

The unclued lights are all geographical locations – paired as anagrams: 13/9, 23/28. 30/17, 34/6 and 42/33. (33 Down is a river rather than a place-name, but DONETSK (33+K) would have maintained the theme more specifically, but then it is not an anagram of OSTEND!)   First prize Magdalena Deptula, Eton, Berkshire Runners-up D.G. Tallis,


No. 298

Black to play. This is from Wojtszek-Jobava, Wijk aan Zee 2014. This week’s puzzle is a fine finish from the ‘B’ group at Wijk aan Zee. The white position is a mess, but what is the key winning move for Black? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 28 January or via email to