In this lesson you're going to learn more about FORKS.

Remember, a FORK is a move which THREATENS two enemy pieces at the same time with ONE piece.

The best pieces for FORKS are QUEENS and KNIGHTS? Do you know why?

It's because they are the two pieces which move in EIGHT directions. Think about it.

Queens are LONG RANGE PIECES. They can have an effect right across the whole board.

For this reason QUEEN FORKS are often hard to spot.

Even from her starting square, the Queen has lots of opportunities to play a fork. Can you find them?

Getting used to looking at them will help you become a strong player.

Have a look at this position. How can White play a QUEEN FORK?

Enter your move using the keypad below.

Here's the answer. Move the Queen to h5.

Just take a look. You're CHECKING the Black King and THREATENING the Bishop on c5.

Black must get out of check, so next move you can capture the Bishop.


If you understood the last question you should get this one right.

Again it's White's move. Over to you.

It's the same thing again. The only difference is that White wins a Knight rather than a Bishop.

This happened in a game played about 100 years ago - the loser was one of the best players in the world!

Note that in both these examples Black moved FOOLISH FREDDIE in the opening.

This time it's Black who gets to have a go at finding a Queen Fork.

Look carefully at the board and type in your answer.

Congratulations if you got it right!

White cannot get out of check and save his Bishop at the same time.

Note that if his pawn was on e2, not e3, he could play either his Queen or his Bishop to d2.

If you got the last one right, this should be easy.

It's Black's move again.

Yes, it's the same thing again.

Black's FORK threatens the Knight and checks the King.

These FORKS happen over and over again. Get used to them!!

This time it's White who gets the chance to play a FORK.

What you are you going to play here?

Yes, it's the same thing yet again!

Are you getting used to it yet?

White has a King on one prong and a Knight on the other one.

This one's not so easy to get right!

It's a little bit different from what you've seen before.

It's White's move again.

If you got this one right you're getting pretty good at FORKS!

The Queen threatens MATE on f7 (SCHOLAR'S MATE!) and the Knight on e4. If Black tries Ng5 White can take it with his Bishop, and, if Black recaptures, it's mate on f7 again.

Now for something a bit different.

This is the position after the moves 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 (RUY LOPEZ or SPANISH OPENING) 3... a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. Nxe5. White's won a pawn but Black has several ways of using his Queen to win it back.

In fact he has TWO FORKS and A SKEWER to choose from. No points this time, but see what you can find.

Ok, what did you find?

The usual move is to play Qd4, FORKING the Pawn on e4 and the Knight on e5.

Another FORK is Qg5, FORKING the Pawn on g2 and the Knight on e5.

There's also a SKEWER: Qe7, SKEWERING the Knight on e5 and the Pawn on e4.

Did you find all that?

In the next part of the lesson we'll find out how good you are at DEFENDING against FORKS.

It's a bit scary when you're being attacked.

It's even more scary when you're being attacked TWICE.

Let's see how you get on.

OK. Here's your first task.

You're Black. You're in check. What should you play?

c7-c6 Nb8-c6

Bc8-d7 Qd8-d7

Again you're Black and again you're in CHECK.

How are you going to get out of it this time?

c7-c6 Nb8-c6

Nb8-d7 Qd8-d7

Be very careful with this one!

Which of these moves should Black play next?

Nb8-c6 Qd8-e7

Ng8-f6 g7-g6

Right, then, let's see how good a defender you really are?

It's White's move here: can you find a way out?

Ne5-d3 Ne5-f3

Qd1-f3 Nc3-b5

A really good way to practice looking for QUEEN FORKS is to set up some positions on the board with a White Queen, a Black King and a Black Rook.

Have a look at each position and see how many QUEEN FORKS you can find.

We'll move on to some examples.

In this position White's got TWO QUEEN FORKS.

One is safe: the other isn't. Which one would you play?.

Look carefully and see if you can find the QUEEN FORK in this position?
In this position White has three QUEEN FORKS but only one of them is safe.

Can you find it?

In this position White has two QUEEN FORKS.

One of them wins the Rook: the other one allows Black to defend.

Which one would you play?


You have now completed the QUEEN FORKS assignment.