2022 - Position 57
Updated: Mar 29
Match Play. Red trails 0-5 to 11. How should Red play 44?
Most of those who commented spotted the key flaw with 13/9(2)*, 8/4(2) – the obvious play, but it leaves Red’s checkers disconnected with the four rear checkers somewhat stranded.
Three of the fours are clear, 13/9* and 8/4(2). It is fourth one where doubt lies. Given that White has a blot in his home board Red can afford to take some risks to achieve good outer board coverage.
By far the best move is 18/14, which duplicates White’s ones and twos. If White enters and hits Red will have multiple return shots. It is that loose blot in White’s home board that lets Red play with bravado.
XG tells us that any move other than 18/14, 13/9*, 8/4(2) is a blunder. If you move the White blot on his 2-pt to his 6-pt then all the sensible hitting moves have virtually the same equity.