17k vs. 12k fighting game

This is probably the coolest go match I’ve ever had. Lots of fighting. I would like to know, where I can improve, since I hardly saw any obvious mistakes. Here’s the link: https://online-go.com/game/2050493

Black played quite well for a 17k, I think.

A lot of the obvious mistakes were indeed tactical. Some were simply blunders, but some were also misunderstandings about the most important stones to help/harm in some of the fights.

I also saw things such as Black’s failure to extend from powerful thickness when a wide extension was possible. Together with a missed throw-in, I consider these some of the most obvious and logical opportunities that Black failed to find in the game. Finding these would also help to make you a much more dangerous player when fighting breaks out.


Thank you. These ideas were really helpful. I thought about the cut right away in move 43. But I guess, I was too worried about the corner. Also the idea on sacrificing two stones in move 57 and thereby shortening the opponents liberties was pretty awesome. The throw-in was really cool! I have to look out for stuff like that!

As with the extending from the wall in move 15: I was not quite sure, if that strategy would be safe, since the wall itself wasn’t connected to any eyes yet and could be eaten, if I’m not careful. How likely is it, that I can eat that stone on G3? Could you add a couple of moves to the review in that situation, please? I feel, that this is one of the things, that I can improve on the most, since I’m kind of unsure about what happens next.

Thanks for the great review. It helped me a lot! :smile:

About move 15. Sure, the wall can be captured if you aren’t careful and it becomes completely surrounded and without sufficient eyespace. So play carefully, no? The wall is way healthier than a single stone without a potential base (more liberties, harder to block/enclose) and that’s why it looks more like Black is attacking White than White is attacking Black there. The wall is also way healthier when you ensure that the White stone can’t make a base (when the white ‘attacker’ is weak, the black ‘defender’ is healthier), so adding a move on the bottom does more for you than tenuki, which ignores the problem entirely and lets White take a base and get healthier first.

As for who ‘eats’ whom, ‘eating’ is not the entire focus of a fight, perhaps especially so when attacking on the open board, prior to enclosure. The possibility of capturing stuff determines the health of a group and the health of a group constrains what it can do. Unhealthy groups that cannot be sacrificed must scrounge for eyespace. This means that they can be herded around, directed into unprofitable areas while the opponent takes moves facing profitable areas. When enclosed to the point where they are forced to live locally, their strengthening moves are directed inward toward thickening their own shape and making and dividing a tiny eyespace, while the opponent’s replies are directed toward thickening the enclosure, which radiates influence toward all the outside areas which the attacked group can no longer see.

I’ve added a few variations to the game, which should help you to get comfortable with the idea that you can attack things while staying healthy with a wall that can access some eyespace but is not yet clearly alive. As I hope you can see, it isn’t necessarily deeply combinatoric, either. If Black can effectively respond to flow towards the center and flow towards the east, Black can often effectively respond to these flows in combination. It would take some crucial weaknesses nearby for a particular combo to work for White when almost none others do, really. In general there is not that much to fear if the White stone wants to grow (or more poetically, grovel) into a living group; what happens when White does this is really the essence of Black’s attacking goals.

Thank you for your extensive effort. That really helped. I think I understand that principle better now. :smiley:

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