Famous Players
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To determine "Who has
the move", count ALL
the pieces in YOUR SYSTEM, when it is YOUR TURN TO PLAY. If the number is ODD, you have the
move. If it is even your opponent has THE
MOVE.
See Our "Next Move" Tutorials. Click the graphics for info. Solution to McCulloch's Masterpiece -Coming
Solution to Bowen's Twins-Coming

Famous Positions and Landings




Solutions to above, are forthcoming. In the meantime, the positions below are worth of study.
They come up, again and again. Watch for them.

The Crocodile Position

10-6
1-10
15-6
3-7
6-2
7-10
2-6
10-14
6-9
14-17
9-14
17-22
14-17
22-26
32-28
26-31
19-15
31-24
28-19
20-24
23-18
16-23
15-11
White
Wins

A remarkable example of this coming up from 2 different lines-of the same opening!- is:
10-15, 21-17, 9-13, 17-14, 11-16, 24-19--A 15-24, 28-19, 6-9*, 22-18, 8-11*, 25-22, 16-20*, 29-25, 11-16*, 25-21, 4-8?, (1-6* is correct) 22-17*, 13-22, 26-17, 2-6, 30-26*, 6-10, 32-28, 1-6,( 8-11 loses also) 17-13, 18-9, 5-14, 26-22, 17-26, 31-22, 14-18, 22-15,
3-7, 6-9, 7-11, 9-14, 11-18, 19-15 then 18-22, 14-17, 22-26, 17-22, 26-31, 22-17!, 31-24, 28-19, 20-24 and 18-15! wins. Analyzed by Captain Fishburne, in the last century, it got it's
name from the wicked "tail end snap."
A. Also, 23-19, 16-23, 26-10, 6-15, 27-23, 8-11*, 32-27, 4-8, 22-18, 15-22, 25-18,
11-16, 29-25, 8-11, 25-21, 16-20, 24-19, 11-16, 30-25, 1-6, 14-9, 5-14, 18-9, 13-17*,
21-14, 6-13, 14-9, 13-17, 25-22, 17-23, 31-22, 7-10, 9-5, 10-14, 5-1, 3-8, 1-5, 2-7?,
(2-6* draws) 5-9*, 14-18, 22-15, 7-11, 9-14*, 11-18, and 19-15 is into the same ending.

The Swan-Adamson Position
Solution:
11-15
19-16
12-19
23-16
15-18
16-11
10-15
20-16
15-19
16-12
19-24
11-8

24-28
8-4
28-32
4-8
32-27
26-23
18-22
23-19
27-23
19-15
23-18
8-11

22-26
15-10
26-31
11-7
14-17
21-14
18-9
7-2
9-5
2-6
5-1
6-2

31-27
2-7
27-24
27-24
24-20
Red
Wins

After 2 years in the game, I qualified for the 1984 ID mail tourney, and had the pleasure of
winning this classic. My opponent and I arrived at it this way: 9-14, 23-18, 14-23,
27-18, 5-9, 26-23, 11-15, 18-11, 8-15, 22-18, 15-22, 25-18, 4-8, 32-27, 1-5, 30-26,
10-14, 24-20, 6-10, 25-22, 9-13, 18-9, 5-14, 22-17, 13-22, 26-17, 10-15, 17-10, 7-14, 23-19,
(my opponent took this to avoid 31-26?, which was published to draw, in an earlier ID book. Spotting the correction, he undoubtedly though this the correct way. It is) 15-24, 2-7,
27-23?!, (but now he falters. When I sent in my games, I also sent my analysis of the position,
with the analysis later coming under fire. It is a landing reached by 9-13 24-19 11-15,
and in Masterplay (colors reversed) on P-65 Var-1, then into P-261 where it is
diagrammed. The analysis I sent corrected this 27-23 with 31-26*, 14-18. Here I had
sent, (which was published) 26-23* to draw. 3 years later, in the 1987 ID ty. my good
friend, Dennis Cayton concluded my analysis lost and took 19-15?? (instead of 26-23*)
in an attempt to "still" draw. 19-15 loses. 26-23* is correct then 18-22 23-18. Here
Mr. Cayton feared 7-10, (22-26, 18-14 draws, which I also sent) but I had also stated
that if 7-10, 27-23*! draws, without further play. Notice how this stops the king from going 22-26 as white would have 19-16* to draw.
So 22-25, (loses time to attack the
single pieces) and 18-14 etc. is a fine draw. Mr. Cayton, despite the setback he
suffered in this game, went on win the 1987 ID ty. and reign as mail play champion
for that year. The position also comes up from Defiance lines.
The great Don Lafferty, became entangled in this Swan-Adamson ending, in the 1964 National Ty. losing a game to
David Zevenia. Yes, they will always come up again.
The position cannot be found in Swan and
Adamson's book on the "Cross Opening", and subsequently became credited to many different authors. Be that as it may, we leave it credited to S&A-as Ben Boland did, whose monumental- "Famous Positions"- we consult often.
It should be pointed out that the winning 14-17 exchange
in the Swan-Adamson line, wins because it gives the "overall" move to the white side, but by forming the bridge, it leaves the 2 active pieces to determine the outcome. The attacking king and the defending king, and the attacking king HAS THE MOVE on the defending king.
In the recent game between WCC Beta, and Colossus, the opposite was true. From this position: Red-3-14-20-King 31. White-12-21-32-king 4. White to play and draw. 4-8. Here, WCC had 2 options, 31-26 or 20-24. Both get 32-27* to draw. If 31-26, (leaves the piece on 20) 32-27*, 26-31, and chase the piece, leaving the king on 18 to prepare for the 14-17 exchange, as in Swan-Adamson. However, you will find the attacking king, doe not have the move on the defending king. The other option, 20-24, 32-27*, 24-28, 27-23 now the chase-but the piece that was on 20 has advanced 2 squares. Cont; 31-26, 23-19, 26-23, 19-15, 23-18, 8-11*, 28-32, 15-10, 32-27, 11-7*, 14-17, 21-14, 18-9, 7-2, 9-5, 2-6, 5-1 and it is the defending king that has the move on the attacking king, although "overall" Red has the move. red cannot win the position. Such are the "Mysteries Of Dama." ("Dama" is the Italian name for checkers. Julius D'Orio once wrote a book called "The Mysteries Of Dama.") The WCC-Colossus game, is thus an important addition to published play.
A Brooklyn shot
A "Brooklyn" is a shot theme, the mechanics of which are unique to that family of settings. Solution: 18-14, 11-18, 14-10, 6-15, 23-14, 16-23, 27-24, 20-27, 32-23. White wins.


In the 1907 England vs. Scotland tournament, well known player and problem composer-Willie Gardner won this from 3 different players! It is a most common "Defiance" landing, the Defiance system being one of the major systems on the board, coming up from many openings. Go: 11-15, 23-19, 9-14, 27-23, 8-11, 22-18, 15-22, 25-9, 5-14, 29-25, 11-15, 25-22, 7-11, 24-20, 15-24, 28-19, 11-15, 32-28, 15-24, 28-19 6-9, 22-18, 4-8, and Gardner's opponents "stepped right in" with 18-15?? forming the diagram, and apparently relishing the opportunity to "attack" the double corner. What a rude awakening they received! Drummond's old 20-16 (instead of 18-15?) or the Newell Banks 31-27 (best) will draw. Now for the "Brooklyn", shown by Drummond in the 1850's. (Here is a good chance to try and find this on your own)
Go: 1-6*, 26-22, (if 30-25, 9-13*, 26-22, 14-17!, 21-7, 2-27, 31-24, 6-10, 22-18, 8-11, 25-21, (25-22 3-7) 13-17! 21-7, 3-10 and Red wins, a man down, as white must sacrifice 2 pieces.) 22-18, 3-7* (into the Brooklyn) 18-9, 13-17*, 21-14, 6-13, 15-6, 2-27, 31-24, 7-10*, 30-25, 8-11, 25-21, (25-22, 10-14) 11-15. Red Wins. I believe Mr. Gardner did his homework, a tad better than did his opponents.
The finest positions, know to mankind, have been published. None are greater than the "uncanny" mechanics of "Henderson's shot." I consider this one of finest stratagems to ever reach the pages of published play. Hugh Henderson, American Tourney champ, won the 2nd and 3rd National Tournaments (then known as American Tournaments) circa-1907 and 1915. A great analyst, he developed a lot of our play on the Kelso openings, that begin with red starting the game by moving 10-15. The position usually comes up from 10-15, 22-17, 9-13, 17-14, 11-16, 23-18, 15-22, 25-18, 6-9, 27-23, 16-20, 24-19, 8-11, 32-27, 11-16, 29-25, 1-6, 19-15 forms diagram.
The 7-11 exchange will draw, but so does Henderson's way with 7-10, 14-7, 3-19, 25-22. Now is good time to leave this for the students-medium players-or advanced players to find Henderson's gem. Red has packed in on both wings-to the side of the board- and seems hopelessly doomed. However we will show Henderson's play, so onward, please. 2-7*, 21-17, (or 30-25 1st) 7-10*, 30-25, now 10-15*, 18-11, 20-24*, 27-20, 4-8*, 11-4, 6-10, 20-11, 9-14, 23-16, 14-30, 11-7, 12-19*, 7-2, ( 26-23, 19-26, 7-3, 10-15 draws) 30-23, 4-8, 10-14*, 8-11, (Please be careful. The attack is not over) 23-26*, (giving up the king hardly seems appropriate but it's the only way) 22-18, 14-23, 31-22, 23-26*, 11-15, 19-23, 15-18 and 26-30*, 18-27, 30-26*, 22-18, 26-23* is just in time. Drawn. Did you ever?
There are several lines (or entire openings) in the game of checkers, that like this line, hinge on exact timing, to finally secure a one lung draw -on the 1 inch line! The diagrammed position has been played into as recently as the 1976 and 1986 National Tournaments. President of the ACF-Les Balderson-calls this a "pet line." I would judge, that most master players look at the mechanics of this-ever so often-to make sure the remember it! It is a beautiful "coup."

Actually this is know as "Allen win"-Robertson's Draw." Premier analyst of the last century, Fred Allen, published the win, with J. Robertson later publishing the correct way to play it-the draw. Go: 8-11*-A-B-Var-1, 2-6, 30-25 23-18, 25-22, 18-14, 13-17-C, 14-9, 17-21, 9-5, 21-25, 5-1, 25-30, 1-5, 30-26, 5-9, 26-23, 6-10, 23-16, 10-3, 16-19, 9-14, 19-23, 14-10, 23-19, 3-8, 11-15, 8-11, 15-18, 11-15, 19-24, 10-14, 18-23, 20-16, 12-19, 14-18, 23-26, 18-25. Drawn.
A. Robertson's move. The draw was later played by Campbell-Ferrie in world title play. B. Willie Ryan, many years later, showed how to beat 7-10? Viz: 7-10, 2-, 10-14, 6-9, 1417, 9-14, 17-22, (17-21, 23-18, 13-17, 18-15, 17-22, 14-18 or 20-16 wins) 23-18, 22-25, (30-25, 20-16, 25-30, 18-15, 30-26, 14-18 wins) 18-15, 25-29, 14-18, 29-25, 18-23, 13-17, 20-16, 17-22, 16-11. W. Win. Var-1. (Allen's Win) 7-11?, 31-26, (23-18 wins too) 13-17, 2-6, 17-21, 6-9, 21-25, 9-14, 25-29, 14-17, 29-25, 17-21, 25-29, 26-22, 29-25, 23-18, 25-29, 18-15, 11-25, 19-15. Remarkable win. C. 22-18, (loses) 6-9*, 18-23, 14-10, 23-16, 10-3, 16-19, 3-8, 11-15, 9-14, 19-23, 8-11, 15-19, 11-15, 19-24, 15-18, 23-27, (23-19 18-23 wins) 14-10*, 13-17, 10-15, 27-32, 15-19, 32-28, 20-16*, 17-21, 16-11, 21-25, then 18-23 and 24 is lost. WW.
Games arriving at the position. 1. "The Cross ." 11-15, 23-18, 8-11, 27-23, 4-8, 23-19, 10-14, 19-10, 14-23, 26-19, 7-14, 24-20, 6-10, 30-26, 11-15, 26-23, 15-24, 28-19, 8-11, 22-18, 9-13, 18-9, 5-14, 25-22, 11-15, 32-28, 15-24, 28-19, 3-7, 29-25, 7-11, 22-18, 1-5, 18-9, 5-14, 31-26, 11-15, 19-16, 12-19, 23-16, 15-19, 16-11, 19-24, 11-8, 24-27, 8-3, 27-31 form diagram-colors reversed. 2. "The Crescent Cross." 11-15, 23-18, 8-11, 26-23, 4-8, 30-26*, 10-14, 24-19, 15-24, 27-20*, 6-10, 22-17, 10-15, 17-10, 7-14, 28-24, 15-22, 26-10, 2-7, 24-19, 7-14, 25-22, 1-6, 22-18, 6-10, 29-25, 9-13, 18-9, 5-14, 25-22, 11-15, 32-28, 15-24, 28-19, 3-7, etc . same as No.1.
Published play also shows this coming up from the "Octopus", ( 10-15, 21-17, 7-10, 17-14 or 11-16, 21-17, 7-11, 17-14) "The Double Cross" ( 9-14, 23-18) both among the hardest and most critical, of all checker openings, and several other openings. I have recently found it from the new mail play openings. It could pop up, at any time, as it is a natural setting. Here's one to know!
A natural 5x5 setting, akin to "5th position" in appearance. Dozens of openings may produce such a natural setting.
Red to play: 13-17*, 22-13, 14-18, 19-16*, 11-20, 13-9, 10-15, 9-6, 15-19, 6-2, 20-24, 2-7, 24-27, 7-11, 19-24, 28-19, 27-31. Drawn.
White to play: 26-23, 11-15, 28-24, 13-17, 22-13, 15-18, 13-9, 18-27, 9-6, 27-31, 6-2, 31-27, 24-20, ( 2-6, 27-20, 6-15, 20-24 wins) 27-24, 2-6, 24-15, 6-9, 14-18. Red wins. S. Lucas.
One popular game that goes into this is: 11-15, 23-19, 8-11, 22-18, 4-8, 17-13, (Old 14th) 15-18, 26-23, 9-14, 24-20, 10-15, ( inferior move) 1910, 6-15, 228-24, 2-6, (15-19, 24-15, 5-9, 13-6, 1-26 and red can draw either jump) 31-26, 15-19, 24-15, 6-9, 13-6, 1-19, 23-16, 12-19, 26-23, 19-26, 30-23, 5-9, 25-22, 22-29, 7-10, 27-24, 3-7, 24-19, 11-15, 32-8, 15-24, 28-19, (now a problem once published by A. Kear in 1871) 7-11, 22-18, 8-12 forms the Lucas solution at 3rd move, colors reversed. In crossboard play, "Mr. Lucas has claimed many a victim.

First published in "The Draughts Players Weekly Magazine, Vol-3, May 22, 1886, by John Busby. 10-15, 23-18, 6-10 or 11-15, 22-18, 15-22, or 9-13, 22-17, 13-22 and a host of others openings could arrive at this, as shown in published play. The win is: 32-27, 9-13, 27-23, 1-5, 23-19, 5-9, 20-16, 10-15, 17-10*, 15-24, 16-11, 24-27, 10-6, 27-31, 6-1, 12-16, 11-7, 16-19, 7-2, 19-23, 2-7, 23-27, 7-11*-A 27-32, 11-16, 32-27, 16-19, 27-32, 19-23, 31-27, 23-26, 27-31, 26-30, 32-27, 1-5. White wins.
A. 7-10 (allows a draw) 27-32, 1-5, 9-14*, 10-17, 31-26, 5-9, 32-27, 9-14, ( 9-6, 27-23, 6-10, 26-30, 17-14, 30-25, 22-18, 25-22, 10-15, 13-17 or 22-17 drawn) 26-30*, (not 27-24, 14-10, 24-19, 17-14, 26-19, 14-18 wins) 14-18, (14-9 30-26 draws) 30-25. Drawn.
This is NOT a position of frequent occurrence. Splendid tactics are required to get at this. 23-26, 5-9, 19-15, 9-14, 16-11, 14-18, 15-10, 18-14, 11-7, 14-9, 7-3, 9-5, 26-23, 5-9, 23-19, 9-5, 19-15, 5-9, 15-11, 9-5, 11-7, 5-9, 7-5, 9-5, 2-6, 5-9, ( 5-1, 3-8, 17-14, 10-26, 1-10, 26-23 wins) 6-1, 9-6, (9-5 3-8 wins) 10-15, 6-9, ( 6-2, 15-18, 22-15, 13-29, 15-10, 25-29 wins) 1-5, 9-6, (17-14, 15-10, 14-7, 3-10 wins) 5-9, 6-2, ( 6-1, 17-14 wins) 3-8, 2-7, 8-12, 7-2, 12-16*, ( not 15-10, 17-14, 10-26, 25-22, 26-17, 21-5 draws) 2-7, 16-19, 7-2, 19-23*, 2-7, 23-26, 7-2, 15-11 the Royal Fugitive is as last cornered. Red Wins.
The position can come out the Old 14th, with 11-15, 23-19, 8-11, 22-17, 4-8, 25-22, 9-14, 17-13 and the controversial 14-18, which was the original way it developed. The great, Asa Long once showed how it could come from: 12-16, 21-17, 9-13, 24-20, 5-9, 25-21, 11-15, 20-11, 7-16, 23-18, 16-20, 18-11, 8-15, 26-23, 4-8, 23-18, 8-11, 30-26, 1-5, 26-23, 9-14, 18-9, 5-14, 28-24, 6-9, 29-25, 3-8, 23-18, 14-23, 27-18, 20-27, 32-23, 8-12, 31-27, 2-7, 18-14, 9-18, 23-14, 15-19, 14-9, 11-16, 9-6, 16-20, 6-2, ( in a 7th American tourney game, 19-29, Louis Ginsberg played 6-1 to a draw vs. Long. Long pointed out how 6-2 would go into The Fugitive King) 19-24, 2-11, 24-31, 11-7, 31-26, 7-14, 20-24, 14-18, 24-27, 18-15, 27-31, 15-19, 31-27, 19-15, 12-16, 15-11, 16-20, 11-15, 20-24, 15-10, 24-28, 10-14, 28-32, 14-10, 32-28, 10-14, 28-24, 14-9, 24-19, 9-14, 19-16, 14-9, 27-24, 9-5, 24-19 forms above, after 1st move of solution.

There are no modern games arriving at this position. It might be considered a novelty setting, but has been published from actual play. The pieces, occupy ALL the squares on the side and end of the board. Not only has it been played into, but the correct playing procedure then analyzed. Go: 4-8, 29-25, 31-26, 2-6-A, 8-11, 12-16, 32-27, 25-29, 27-23, 29-25, 23-18, 6-10, 18-14, 10-17, 21-14, 25-21, 14-10, 16-19, 11-16, 21-17, 16-23, 17-14, 10-6, ( 10-7 will dr. too) 1-10, 23-19, 14-18, 26-22, 18-25, 30-21, 3-7, 19-16, 10-15. Draws.
A. 25-29?, 21-17, 2-7, 26-22, 1-6, 22-18, 6-10, 28-24, 20-27, 32-23, 5-9, 13-6, 7-11, 8-5, 30-26, 30-23, 29-25, 17-14, 25-22, 14-10, 22-15, 6-1, 15-6, 1-10, 12-16, 10-15, 16-20, 15-19, 3-7, 15-10 White wins.
The games of record, going into this are: 11-15, 23-19, 8-11, 22-17, 9-14, 17-13, 14-18, 21-17, 18-23, 27-18, 15-22, 25-18, 10-14, 17-10, 6-22, 26-17, 11-15, 19-10, 7-21, 24-20 forms a picture frame position, though different than our setting. Found by 2 New Jersey players. Continue: 12-16, 20-11, 3-8, 29-25, 8-15, 30-26, 21-30, 31-27 etc. Drawn.
Our position came up from: 11-16, 22-18, 10-14, 25-22, 8-11, 29-25, 4-8, 18-15, 11-18, 22-15, 16-20, 26-22, 14-18, 23-14, 9-18, 24-19, 7-11, 21-17, 11-16, 17-13, 16-23, 15-10, 6-15, 25-21, 18-25, 27-4, 25-29 forms position.
This illustrates the many divergent ways there are, to play checkers! More on this page, coming soon.
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