Is there a possibility that white can win this game as long as both players are playing the best of their game?

What should be the next move for white to play if white wants to win the game?

  • avoid checks to white king/play defensive.

  • try to capture black queen even if white queen needs to be sacrificed?

  • protect the white pawn on C file

    [FEN "r2Q4/5q1k/2P3pp/p7/4n1P1/2b4P/P7/2KR4 w - - 0 1"]

3 Answers 3


At this point, I believe white is completely lost, and it seems that the engine agrees. I think the basic idea is that the material deficit is too much and the black king isn't in any real danger as the bishop on c4 can come into g7 and block any checks/mating ideas. While the white king is in the open with active black pieces around it.

Firstly if you take the rook (Qxa8), then Qc4. You can block any checks with the bishop and create a discovery check, which will lead to a checkmate.

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You can't really protect the c-pawn well and if you do, it will be too slow as black has very quick ways to infiltrate with the queen. And for similar reasons, it is also not feasible to play defence, as you have too many weaknesses to cover . enter image description here

Trading queens also doesn't get you anywhere, although it is recommended by the engine since black's queen is more dangerous than white's. In that case, if you take back with the rook (Rxd7) then Bg7 again and black's rook is always going to keep an eye on the pawn. If pawn takes, then Bf6 and the square is always covered enough times. Not to mention that black can always sack a piece for the pawn and will still be up a minor piece.

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Having said all that, although the game is lost for white in all situations, I think your best practical bet would be to take the rook on a8 and sort of hope that black is not able to find the checkmate. As counterplay, you can try to push your past pawn or get your rook on offence with a check.

Hope this helps!


White should resign. There is no way to avoid losing.

(Also, if I understand the board diagram correctly and Black's last move was to move the queen from f2 to f7, then Black missed the move Qb2 which is immediate checkmate.)

(Edit: We actually don't know the second part for sure, as black could have been in check with a rook on f7 for example, but of course we won't know for sure, unless we had the moves)

  • If you want an analysis for a particular white move or two, say which ones and I'll edit it in. Feb 24, 2021 at 3:43

I think white can play Rd7, and if the queens are both taken by the rooks, then after blacks king moves, you can play Rb7, followed by c7, then Rb8, pinning the rook. If I'm mistaken, and black can play something which doesn't involve Queen trade, or in the Rb7,c7, Rb8 moves black can counter, please inform me.

  • Yep, true white can play Rd7, which forces the informal queen trade. But black can simply react to the plan you mentioned by putting his rook in front of the passed c-pawn and move his king off the 8th rank
    – Ayush W
    Apr 30, 2021 at 0:49

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