Which Moves Are Bad?

British Go Journal No. 18. October 1972. Page 4.

Takagawa, 9p

Two examples.

Figure 1

Amateurs often tend to be too interested in attack and defence, and forget that Go is a game of territory. Both players in this example are shodan.

  • White 4: This nozoki is bad as it is unnecessary. It strengths black's position and does nothing to help white.
  • Black 7:
    Diagram 1

    BGJ omitted the number '3' from that black stone.
    A negative move. Black 1 in Dia 1 is good, taking away white's base and mapping out territory.
  • White 8: White should extend to A to prevent black 1 in Dia 1.
  • Black 9: Correct. This is a vital point in black's shape.
  • White 10: Too heavy. Run a way lightly - he should jump to 12.
  • Black 11:
    Diagram 2

    Black 1 in Dia 2 makes things difficult for white.
  • Black 13: useless - he must play 14.

Black is only thinking about attacking white; he should be thinking about making territory. Early in the game it is impossible to capture a group like this. If Black had played as in Dia 1 he could attack the white group later in the early middle game. Always try to make territory while attacking early on - a direct attack is useless.

Many amateurs are afraid of large moyos. They tend to reduce them early on or not at all. Both players in this example are shodan.

Figure 2

  • White 1: There is no need to play here now. he should play in one of the two lower corners.
  • White 5. This is an overplay. Joseki is at A.
  • Black 6:
    Diagram 3

    After White's mistake, Black can play 1 in Dia 3. White jumps to 2 to try to make shape but black's warikomi at A will be painful for white.
  • Black 12: This only hardens white's left side into actual territory, so I cannot give it my seal of approval, and playing this type of move is a habit one should try to lose. Black's invasion at B would be better.
  • White 17: This move is too loose; there are many gaps in white's prospective moyo on the upper edge. White should first play Dia 4 to protect his weakness.
    Diagram 4

Both players here show a lack of feeling for influence and timing. Black 12 and 14 were unnecessary.


This article is from the British Go Journal Issue 18
which is one of a series of back issues now available on the web.

Last updated Thu May 04 2017.
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