The Checker Maven

So What, and Big Deal

This is a busy week, as our second feature article contains two substantial problems, related in a way that will become clear later on, and sharing a common thread of thought: at first glance, you're likely to say "So What" or even "Big Deal."

But these problems are the compositions of that noted problemist of a bygone era, Mr. Chas. Hefter, a checker force not to be taken lightly, so perhaps we should avoid hasty judgments.

Here's the first one:

WHITE

BLACK
Black to Play and Draw.

B:W28,21,K16:BK30,24,19,K15.

Well, "So What?" Black is a man up and we're just asking for a draw... oh... wait.... Black is about to lose a man and... a second one... so Black will be a man down... hmm, maybe there is something to this after all.

And now the second situation:

BLACK

WHITE
White to Play and Win

W:W21,28,K32:BK19,K25.

So, "Big Deal." White is a man up and what else should he do but win? Oh.... the king and man jammed into the double corner could make it harder... hmm, maybe it's not as easy as it first looked.

Try out the problems but if you are stumped, so what. Clicking on Read More to see the solutions is no big deal.



Solutions

Problem One

Hefter gives this nice solution:

30-25 16x23 15-11---A 28x19 25-22 23-27 22-18 21-17 11-7 19-16 7-10 16-11 18-14 17-13 10-6 11-8 6-10 27-24 10-6

Drawn, as the position leads inexorably to Payne's Double-Corner Draw. A possible continuation might be:

24-19 11. 14-18 19-16 12. 18-23 8-4 13. 6-1 13-9 14. 23-18 9-5 and White will never make any progress.

The order of the first moves can be varied:

15-11! and now 16-23 30-25 leads back into the published solution, while 16-7 leaves a rather ordinary 3x3 drawn ending.

A--- 24-27 23-32 15-19 leads to the position of our second problem and a White win.

Problem Two

32-27 25-22 27-31 19-23---1 28-24 22-18 24-20 23-19 31-26 18-15 26-22 15-11 22-18 11-7 21-17 7-11 17-13 11-7 13-9 7-2 9-5 White Wins---2.

1---22-18 21-17 19-23 17-13 18-14 28-24 14-10 24-20 23-19 31-26 10-15 26-22 15-11 22-18 White Wins.

2---The win is long and provides good basic instruction. It might go something like this (KingsRow 1.15q):

11-7 21-17 7-11 17-13 11-7 13-9 7-2 9-5 2-7 5-1 7-11 1-6 19-24 6-9 24-19 9-13 11-8 13-17 8-11 17-21 11-8 21-25 8-11 25-30 19-24 18-23 11-8 20-16 24-20 16-12 8-3 23-19 20-16 19-15 16-20 30-26 20-24 26-23 24-20 15-11 20-24 23-18 24-20 18-15 20-24 11-16 24-20 15-11 20-24 16-20 24-27 11-15 27-32 20-24 32-28 15-19 28-32 24-28 3-7 12-8 7-11 8-4 32-27 28-32 and there's not much more to say. If you're one of those of us who are among the lesser mortals of checkerdom, this ending is worth your while to play through and learn.

04/08/06 - Category: Problems - Printer friendly version
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