the dorbel daily

Friday 12 August 2011

Japanese Cubes

I have been lucky enough to get the file of the World Championship semi-final between Takumitsu Suzuki, the eventual champion and Mochizuki Masayouki, the defending champion from 2010. Astonishingly they went to the same High School where they knew each other through chess, although Mochy is the older by two years.

Let's take a look at some of the cube decisions. Here are five of them for you to think about for a day or two.

This is the first game of a 23 point match and Black (Mochy) is on roll.

Position ID: 4PMxAwjYnsEAIw


Cube action for both sides?

Position 2 is a bit harder, White (Susuki) is on roll. Black leads 2-0/23

Position ID: bFsjABa4bRMDIA


Cube action?

Position 3, another "easy" one, or is it? It's 2-2/23 now and Black is on roll.

Position ID: mLkwwCnM5sgBCQ

Cube action?

Position 4. Black leads 3-2/23 now and it is White on roll.

Position ID: mLkwwCnM5sgBCQ


Cube action?

Lastly for today, Position 5. It's the same game and Black is on roll and White is on the bar. Black owns the cube.

Position ID: 7z0DAEBsN8gABw

Cube action?

If you can get all of these right for both sides, you can be very proud of yourself. Give it a go and let us know your reasoning too. I ask for this for two reasons. First, you may well think of something I haven't thought of which is good of course. Second though, being able to assemble your thoughts and say why you want to do what you want to do is a key skill that will help you play better in real life. Watch a top doubles team in action. Listen to their reasoning. Imitate it.

I'll give you the answers to these in a day or two, until then, as ever, enjoy the game!

1 comment:

ah_clem said...

DISCLAIMER: I've never played a 23 point match, so I may be waaaay off base here. I'll try anyway:

1) Black is behind in the race, but has far superior position and is threatening to whack the blot on the three. 2 of 3 Position/Race/Threats is usually double/take for money so that's what I'll go for here. If Black had more checkers in the zone (he only has 10 here) I'd probably pass due to the gammon threats. The double seems clear, the take marginal, but I'll say D/T

2) Market losers are any 6, 5-1, and 4-1. That's 15 market losers out of 36. And 13 of them lead to very gammonish situations. I'd double here just because many players will drop. I think black has a take, but it's narrow, and I'm not sure (another reason to double via Kit's law). It's volatile, and white may have to drop a 4 cube, but it's worse for black where he may be looking at a doubled gammon. D/T

3) 24 shakes hit the blot, and when hit White is up the proverbial fecal estuary. If we make the assumption that White wins about as many games when hit as black manages to save when not hit, we arrive at 67% GWC for black here. I think that's enough to double, but not enough to drop. But the gammon rate for White might be enough to push it into drop territory. Again, I'm not entirely sure about the drop (cue Kit's law again), but I'll say D/T again.

4)I guess White dropped the last one? If so, that probably means passing is correct. Oh well, too late to change my answer now.

I would not try to play this as black. maybe I can get an anchor and salvage a backgame, but there are just too many gammons for my taste. Looks like a cash to me (too many backgames that work to play on). D/P

5)Black doesn't win very many gammons, so playing on for gammon is silly. My inclination OTB would be to take a roll or two to increase my position and then cash. But it's probably better to cash now, or get white on the hook for four. I'll do that. R/P.