Prediction and Timing Moves

Knowing what your opponent is going to do is a huge advantage. You can exploit him by using timing moves. Timing moves are when you put a piece in harms way because you are predicting that your opponent will move somewhere else first.

Material is dead even in this endgame and players could agree to a draw, but green has a trick up his sleeve! Green has just played his knight to check the red king.

Green's king moves into danger just before the green knight expires! He knows where red's king is going to move. Red will not be able to react fast enough, he has to move or the knight will take his king.

The resulting position. Red dodged the knight but was too slow to react to Green's king who moved in first! Nice play by Green, who will now win.

This all could have been avoided if red had moved his king earlier. Waiting until the end of green's knight timer opened him up to this play.

How to get out of mate (wat?)

Okay, so you fell into a mate. Often you're told to sack your king for a queen when this happens. But if that won't do any good, you have another option.

White is "mated", but it's not quite over yet. Many players would resign or sack the king for the queen. But not white. After he fell into blue's mate, he made a good move: his rook up 1 square. This move appears to be too late, but the point is that blue's queen has to take white's king before the rook gets her. It's impossible to dodge a 1 or 2 square snipe on reaction, it's all prediction. White's only chance here is to go to a1. If he dodges just before blue moves, he can still live.

(In blue's position some players will often wait until white's king dodges to "secure" the kill, but white's rook forces the action).

Another example. Green has played his knight to force blue's hand and now needs to perfectly time his dodge. There is at least a tiny glimmer of hope now (though not so much, as his partner is dead).

This move is extremely hard to pull off, but the 5% of the time it does can leave you grinning as your opponent mourns over the "one that got away".

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