The Checker Maven

Double Down


Doubling down: You're playing Blackjack at some fabulous Las Vegas casino and you think you've got two great cards. So you "double down" --- double your bet in the hopes of doubling your winnings.

Alas, it's not that simple. While under the best circumstances your chances of winning are almost 2 out of 3, most of the time you'll just double your losses. Those bright lights and free drinks are paid for by someone.

So, how does "doubling down" apply to this week's Checker Maven column? Read on.

Our Checker School columns for the last few months have featured "gem" problems by G. M. Gibson. Today we bring you the concluding entry in the G. M. Gibson problem series, and it's a practical one.

White to Play and Win


There are two ways to for White to win this. If this were found in a problem competition, that would be kind of a bad thing; dual (or "double") solutions are frowned upon.. But as a teaching position, doubling down (or should we say doubling up) can be instructive, and we're asking you to find both winning lines. Can you double down and do that? Can you find at least one solution? They're closely related, and if you find one, you might just find the other.

Try it (at least twice), and then--- wait for it--- double-click your mouse on Read More once to see all the answers.null


We think it's most revealing to start with this solution:

32-27 19-24---A 10-6! 2x9 31-26 24x31 26-22 17x26 30x5---B 31-27 5-1 27-23 1-6 23-18 6-10---C 18-23 10-15 23-26---D 15-18 White Wins.

A---Alternatives don't work:

19-23 31-26 23x32 10-6 2x9 26-22 18x25 30x5 and White wins as in the main line.

18-22 30-25 22x29 10-6 2x9 27-23 19x26 31x6 29-25 6-2 25-22 2-7 22-26 7-10 26-23 10-15 and we have the White win at Note D.

17-21 10-7 2x11 27-23 18x27 31x8 White Wins.

B---How can White win it now?

C---White takes the near opposition.

D---The point here is that 23-27 loses to 20-16, so Black can't get to the double corner.

Now for the other way:

30-26 2. 18-23---E 32-27! 23x32 10-6 2x9 26-23 19x26 31x6 White Wins---F

E---Seems best; 18-22 32-28 22-25 26-23 loses quickly.

F---Ensuing play is nearly the same as that after Note B in the first solution: 31-27 6-1 27-23 1-6 23-18 6-10---C 18-23 10-15 23-26---D 15-18 White Wins.

10/13/18 - Category: Books - Printer friendly version
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