# The Checker Maven

### Thanksgiving Weekend 2020

It's Thanksgiving weekend, our favorite holiday time of the year, and we recognize that we have much to give thanks for. While it's been an extraordinarily difficult year for all of us, and many have suffered loss, there is always hope for the future. Our society hasn't collapsed. Our nation is intact and will eventually heal. At The Checker Maven we believe that if we all do our part, work together, and take care of each other, we will come out stronger in the end.

So we give thanks and we are grateful for what we have. We mourn our losses but we carry on undeterred.

Thanksgiving is often a time for us to turn to American checkerist Tom Wiswell for one of his wonderful checker problems. We think Mr. Wiswell's life and work embodied the spirit of this holiday and of our times, for as we've noted before, he too did his part to help America through dark days.

Mr. Wiswell titled the problem below "Companion Piece" because it relates to another similarly-themed problem in his book Checker Magic. It's a bit of a complex setting, making it a good candidate for a holiday weekend.

WHITE

BLACK
Black to Play and Draw

B:WK2,20,21,23,24,29,31:B3,5,7,8,11,14,22

See how you do, then click on Read More for the solution, notes, and run-up to the position.

Solution

First, here's the run-up to the problem position.

 1 10-14 22-17 2 14-18 23x14 3 9x18 17-13 4 5-9 21-17 5 11-15 25-21 6 18-22 ...

Inferior to 8-11 but can't be said to lose.

 6 ... 27-23 7 8-11 23-18

Gives up all advantage. 32-27 was called for here.

 8 12-16 17-14 9 1-5 26x17 10 15x22 14-10 11 6x15 13x6 12 2x9 17-13 13 9-14 13-9 14 4-8 24-20 15 16-19 9-6 16 19-23 6-2 17 15-18 28-24 18 23-26 30x23 19 18x27 32x23

Forms Diagram. Black to Play and Draw.

WHITE

BLACK
Black to Play and Draw

B:WK2,20,21,23,24,29,31:B3,5,7,8,11,14,22

And here's how it's done. Lettered notes are by Mr. Wiswell.

7-10, 24-19---A, 5-9---B, 20-16---C, 11-20, 2-6, 9-13, 6-15, 8-11, 15-8, 3-12, 19-15, 20-24, 15-10, 12-16, 10-6, 16-20, 6-1, 24-27, 31-24, 20-27, 1-6, 27-31---E, 6-9, 14-17---D, 21-14, 31-26, etc., Drawn---1.

A---23-19, 5-9, 19-16 (2-7, 8-12, 7-16, 3-7 B. Wins) 9-13, 16-7, 8-11, 24-19, 11-15, 19-16, 22-26, 31-22, 14-17, 21-14, 10-26 Drawn.

B---If 8-12, 20-16, 11-20, 2-6 White Wins.

C---2-7 (19-16, 9 -13, 16-7, 14-18 etc. Dr.) 8-12,7-16, 10-15, 19-10, 12-26, 10-6, 26-30, 6-1, 9-13, 1-6, 22-25, 29-22, 30-25, 9-6, 25-18, 31-26 (31 -27, 18-23 Dr.) 3-8 etc. Drawn.

D---This time the maneuver works!

E---At this point 22-26 also suffices. 22-26, 6-9, 26-31, 9-18, 31-26, 23-19, 26-23 Drawn.

1---If White plays 23-19 Black gets a 2-for-1 with 22-25, so instead the game must continue 14-10 26-19 to a clear draw---Ed.

That was good, wasn't it? How about a little extra pumpkin pie to celebrate?

11/28/20 - Category: Problems - Printer friendly version