# The Checker Maven

### Robertson's Tool

If you've ever lived in Canada, you'll know about the Robertson screwdriver, invented by Canadian P. L. Robertson around 1908. Robertson screws and screwdrivers supposedly have many practical advantages, though we won't go into them here.

Would P. L. Robertson be related to D. Robertson of Glasgow? Probably not, but if the Canadian Robertson was known for practicality in tools, Glasgow Robertson might equally be known for practicality in checker settings.

Consider the problem below.

D. ROBERTSON
WHITE

BLACK
Black to Move and Draw

B:WK29,24,12:BK23,K7.

This is, indeed, a practical situation; Black has two Kings but is down a piece. Pulling off a draw in this situation would be rather a success.

Can you do it? Keep your grip on your best checker tools, and give this one a turn or two. You can see the solution by applying your mouse to Read More.

Solution

7-11---A 29-25 23-18---B 25-21 18-14 24-20---C 14-9 21-17 9-5 17-14 5-1 14-18---D 1-5 18-23 5-1 23-19 1-6---E, Drawn.

A---Two men are trapped but what to do about the White King?

B---Do you see where this is going?

C---Not 24-19 14-18 and White loses the man on 19.

D---A last ditch try to drive out the Black King on 11.

E---But White now sees that 19-16 loses to 6-2, whereupon after the exchange, Black still has a one-holds two situation and a win on the move after White gives up a man: 19-16 6-2 16-7 2-11 and now either 20-16 or 12-8 lose.

11/11/17 - Category: Problems - Printer friendly version