Ko preparation

  Difficulty: Advanced   Keywords: Ko

Ko preparation moves are some kinds of manoeuvre preliminary to beginning a ko fight. They can appear somewhat mysterious.

Example 1

W Takao Shinji, 6p - B Xu Shuxiang, 5p from the 15th Supergo NEC Cup, New Stars Match, game 1, 2000-05-16 (B+R, 5.5 komi).

Before the ko in the top left  

white+circle/black+circle is an exchange that White normally plays with the aim of fighting a ko. If Black wants to back down, he will not answer at black+circle. In this game, White does something before the ko. See 4-4 point low approach one-space high pincer for this joseki.

Ko preparation  

The exchange W1/B2 is ko preparation. It may also look like a waste of a ko threat.

To understand this: it does 'waste' a threat, but the second threat for White in this area is bigger. This can be called promoting a ko threat.

The ko fight proper  

W1 and so on set up the ko. White interpolates a second piece of preparation with W5/B6 (the third threat here is bigger than the second).

The ko fight resolved  

When it comes, the ko fight is short. NB B2 is not concerned with the ponnuki.

Variation: no preparation  

White has better shape than in this hypothetical result.

Since Black was presumably going to finish the ko immediately, White only needed one threat.

Example 2

Black to win  


White to win  

Ko preparation last edited by RobertPauli on December 27, 2018 - 16:09
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