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  • Writer's pictureChris Bray

2023 - Position 135

Updated: Aug 14, 2023


Unlimited Games. How should Blue play 31?

This problem is not particularly easy. Blue is ahead in the race and so shouldn’t take undue risks.

However, 9/5 is too stiff, leaving four outfield stripped points. 16/15, 16/13 is logical but not quite best. That turns out to be 13/9 which I would not have found over the board. This leaves only one blot and keeps builders for the bar-point, while if White hits from his mid-point he will be breaking a stripped point and a key communication link for his rear checkers. 13/9 also duplicates White’s aces which are need to play both 24/23 and 3/2.

13/10, 9/8 is also OK but it does leave two blots, although White’s home board goes give Blue some licence to take liberties.

I would wager that very few players would find 13/9 here.

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