The Checker Maven

Leeds Express

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The British train known as the Transpenine Express certainly goes to Leeds, but the title of today's Checker School column deals with a position first published in an old newspaper known as The Leeds Express.

Surprisingly, our intrepid research department didn't turn up very much on this publication, which obviously enough once featured a draughts column. The most likely candidate is the Leeds Evening Express, published by Frederick Robert Spark starting in 1867. Today, there is a Leeds Express published by Johnston Publications, a major British publisher of local and regional newspapers. There was also the Skyrack & East Leeds Express, later called the Leeds Skyrack Express and then Leeds Express, which ended publication in 2002. But given the date of today's study, we'd stick with the Leeds Evening Express as the source.

Confusing? Unraveling publication histories is at times as difficult as solving a challenging checker problem. Now, the position below may not be the toughest ever, but it too surely requires some thought.

BLACK
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WHITE
White to Play and Draw

W:W27,24,19,17,13,K7:BK25,20,12,9,6,1.

Can you unravel this one? We ourselves had some serious unraveling to do, as you'll see when you click on Read More to see the solution, notes, and a sample game.20050904-symbol.gif



Solution

Lettered notes and other comments are by Ben Boland in Famous Positions in the Game of Checkers. Numbered notes and the main solution are by the Editor, using the KingsRow computer engine.

27-23---A 20x27 17-14 9x18---1 23x14---2 1-5 19-15 25-22 7-11 22-26 14-10 26-23 10x1 23-19 15-10 etc. Drawn.

Game: 11-15, 23-19, 9-14, 22-17, 6-9, 17-13, 2-6, 25-22, 8-11, 29-25, 4-8, 22-17, 14-18, 26-23, 18-22, 25-18, 15-22, 23-18, 22-25, 17-14, 10-17, 21-14, 11-16, 30-21, 16-23, 24-19---3, 8-11, 19-15, 12-16, 15-8, 3-12, 28-24, 7-11, 21-17, 23-26, 31-22, 11-15, 18-11, 9-25, 11-7, 16-20, 7-3, 25-30, 3-7, 30-25, 24-19, 25-22, 7-11, 22-26, 32-28, 26-22, 11-7, 22-25, 28—24, 5-9. Forms above position. W. Reid vs. I. B. Macindoe, Game No. 2, Glasgow, Feb. 19, 1870, the Draught Board, April 1871.

A---Corrects Macindoe, who continued; 7-2---4, 1-5, 19-15, 25-21, 24-19, 21-14, 15-11, 6-10, 13-6, 10-15, 19-10, 14-16. Black Wins---5. W. Reid.

1---Boland's proposed solution somehow got jumbled. After 17-14 he gives the impossible jump 10-17 (did he mean to write 9-18?), followed by 23-14, 6-10, 13-9, 10-17, 9-5, which would be a trivial Black win (with 9-18 substituted for 10-17). We've shown the computer solution instead.

2---This is now a database draw.

3---The KingsRow opening book ends here. The game was played throughout in a nearly flawless manner.

4---The line of play given in this note is correct but unnecessarily long, as an immediate 25-21 will win here.

5---Boland mistakenly printed "White Wins" here.

James Wyllie first gave the above correction in the “Leeds Express," and later in “The Draught Board," Page 69, August 1871.

02/18/17 - Category: Books - Printer friendly version
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