Marshall Defence:
Example of a Checkmate Opening win for White's Army

Checkmate in the Opening
White Wins in 12 Moves
[Marshall Defence]

Checkmate from the...
Marshall Defence
- Overview -

Checkmate Openings - White Wins - Marshall Defence Checkmate Win for...

Wins in...
12 Moves

Marshall Defence
1. d4 d5 2. c4 Nf6

Checkmate Sequence
1. d4 d5 2. c4 Nf6 3. cxd5 Nxd5 4. Nf3 Nc6 5. e4 Nf6 6. Nc3 Bg4 7. d5 Ne5
8. Nxe5 Bxd1 9. Bb5+ c6
10. dxc6 Qc7 11. cxb7+ Kd8 12. Nxf7# 1-0

Black's Game-Losing Mistakes

Black's game-losing mistakes appear to be ...

  • 4...Nc8, one too many forward Knight moves for Black. Nd5 is forced to move anyway, following 5. e4. So, having collected the Pawn (3...Nxd5), it might have been wiser to play it now (4...Nf6), then it'd be in place to prevent 5. e4.

    Note White's stronger development after 6. Nc3. White controls all but e4 in the Center, which is shared by Nc3 for White and Nf6 for Black.

  • 6...Bg4, goes on the offensive, without recognizing his own Nc6's greater vulnerability versus White's d-Pawn.

    White's 7. d5 is more than just a token threat to Nc6, as it gains White an Advanced Chain (e4,d5), whose lead pawn (d5) is strongly supported/protected by Nc3 and Qd1.

  • 7...Ne5, Black's mind is all over the place! Obviously, without concentrating, he relocates his QN from one attacked square for another, by moving his Nc6 to e5, which Black hasn't protected with any other Pawn or Piece!

    Not only is White's Knight offered as a gift (En Prise) to White's Nf3, it enables White's Knight to move, untroubled, to a more advanced position.

    Initially, one might think 9. Nxe5 is worse, as it exposes White's Qd1 to capture by Black's Bg4 ... But, that's part of White's plan to "remove one of the guards". Black's light-Bishop needs to be removed from its c8-h3 diagonal if White's Checkmate in the Opening is to work ... and White's Queen is the sacrifice that makes this possible!

White's virtually in total control after 9. Bb5+.

I know this is more about the game-losing mistakes, but in this case it's worth looking at a certain aspect of White's success. In particular ...

Notice the position of White's d5-Pawn and how it reaches b8 (one square away from Promotion). This is also key to White's victory, so play back through the entire sequence and focus on how White gets the Pawn to d5 in the first place!

Checkmate Sequence + PGN

Here's how the Marshall Defence can lead to a Checkmate Win for White, in the Opening phase:

[Event "Checkmate Opening - Marshall Defence"]
[Date "2012.02.01"]
[White "?"]
[Black "?"]
[Result "1-0"]
[PlyCount "23"]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 Nf6 {Marshall Defence} 3. cxd5 Nxd5 4. Nf3 Nc6 5. e4 Nf6 6. Nc3 Bg4 7. d5 Ne5 8. Nxe5 Bxd1 9. Bb5+ c6 10. dxc6 Qc7 11. cxb7+ Kd8 12. Nxf7# 1-0

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