Joined: 17 Aug 2006
| Post subject: Woolsey's Law Illustrated
|In the position below, it's a money game, black holds a 2 cube and is on roll. What is the proper cube action? Should black recube? If black recubes, should white take or drop?
Decide and then scroll down for the answers.
The answer is double/drop.
It would be a major blunder not to double here, and the drop is close...it wouldn't be a terrible take, but it would be wrong.
As for Black's double, there are several very good reasons he should double this: if he rolls a 4, of course he's going to win a lot of games, and even a lot of gammons. If he doesn't roll a 4, white might well have to break with large numbers and give black 6's out as well as 4's. In any event, even if he doesn't roll a 4, he's still in control for a roll or two at least. If things go well, he could win gammons, and if they don't he loses almost all single games.
This is the kind of position where I always apply "Woolsey's Law". First I put myself in my opponent's position and ask myself if I am SURE if it is a take or drop. If I am sure it's a drop, it's a double, unless I think I am "too good" to double..meaning I get too many gammons to simply cash out. If I'm sure it's a take, it may still be a double, but I have to give the entire situation more consideration. But what if it's close? What if I'm not sure whether it's a take or drop? THEN FOR SURE, IT'S A DOUBLE! If I'm not sure, there's a pretty good chance my opponent isn't sure either. And if he isn't sure, he might well make a mistake if I give him the cube. He might drop a cube he should take, or he might take a cube he should drop. Either way, unless I double, there is no chance for him to make a mistake.
Apply Woolsey's law EVERY TIME you are thinking about doubling and you will find the decision MUCH EASIER than with any other strategy or line of thinking.