2021 - Position 73
Updated: Apr 21
Match Play. Red leads 4-3 to 5 (Crawford). How should Red play 65?
This is one of the positions where XG (and me) get it wrong on initial evaluation. The difference is that XG can correct itself on a rollout whereas I just made the mistake over the board.
It looks natural to make the 5-pt which is what I did. However, that is an error. The correct plan is to play 18/7. This clears the most troublesome checker and if White hits it he will have to give up one of his anchors prematurely. If the blot is left unchallenged it will help to bring home the rest of Red’s checkers.
Once you see the rollout the play becomes ‘obvious’ but sadly we don’t have that information over the board. Hindsight is a truly wonderful thing.