The Checker Maven

Beeswax Block Buster

The one and only Willie Ryan, checker great, showman, and all-around character, would have been 100 years old this month, we're told. Who knows what he might have added to his many accomplishments had he not passed on far too soon? But in any event, in celebration of this milestone anniversary, we continue our series from what is arguably Willie's best book, Tricks Traps & Shots of the Checkerboard with an entry Willie calls Beeswax Block Buster. Here's what Willie had to say on the subject, way back in 1950.

"Early in my checkered career I took a strong fancy to the Old Paraffin opening, developing much new play on it, and with it defeating many prominent stars of the board. Eventually, my contemporaries got onto it, and I dropped the opening from my repertoire. Here is one Beeswax ambush that I used with wide and telling effect:

11-15 24-20 8-11 27-24---A 3-8 23-19 9-13---B 26-23 6-9---C 23-18 1-6 31-27 9-14 18-9 5-14 forming the diagram.


White to Play and Win


A---Forms the Old Paraffin opening, nicknamed the Beeswax. When properly met, it is somewhat weak for white, though drawable.

B---If 9-14 is tried, continue with 22-17, 5-9, 26-23; now 1-5 is drawable. If 15-18 is taken, it can be nailed neatly by 19-15*, 18-27, 32-23, 11-27, 20-16, 12-19, 24-15, 10-19, 17-3, 27-32, 3-12, and white wins by stealing the piece on square 19.

C---This is where black goes wrong. The only move to draw is: 15-18*, 22-15,11-27, 32-23, 6-9, 25-22, 9-14; now 22-18 or 31-26 will draw."

But don't get "waxed" yourself! Try the problem and then click on Read More for a honey of a solution.


Continue: 22-17, 13-22, 25-9, 6-13, 30-25*, 15-18, 19-16, 12-19, 24-6, 2-9, 20-16, 11-20, 27-24, 20-27, 32-5, and white wins.

01/27/07 - Category: Problems - Printer friendly version
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