Six point double sente diagonal

  Difficulty: Intermediate   Keywords: EndGame
Typical endgame move  

In a game we will often encounter situations which, abstracted, are like this diagram. To the left is some white territory, to the right is some black territory. B1 is now a big endgame move. It is commonly called a "six point double sente". Obviously the discussion is symmetric for W1 there.

Six points

Six points  

Let's assume W2 answers. Then later, B3-W6 is a typical hane connect endgame move, where we also assume that W6 is necessary (i.e. otherwise Black can cut and there are no white stones to which W4 can run). Even later, it is White's prerequisite to play W8 and Black will cover at B9.

If White were to execute the symmetric sequence, the marked points would not be black territory, while the points at W4, W6 and B3 would. The net difference is therefore 6 points.

Double sente


A much harder question to answer is whether these moves are really sente. Clearly, in this abstracted situation, Black can jump in at B3 and nearly all visible white territory is destroyed.

Questions abound:

  • how much territory will be destroyed beyond what's visible here
  • can White therefore even allow for another move here (because there is not so much to destroy afterwards)
  • or is, quite the contrary, the life of her surrounding stones at stake
  • how well is the concrete situation still represented by the abstract situation here
  • and how about mutual damage

These questions are discussed at the following pages:

If indeed the moves are sente for both, the value is 6 points. However, professionals will rarely allow a situation to become double sente. Database search suggests that in fact pros answer this move half of the time. In the other half, it is not certain that the symmetrical move would also be answered.

In professional play

Six point double sente diagonal last edited by Dieter on April 29, 2014 - 18:54
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