# 4-4 pincer variant - not in joseki dictionary

I am 4K and played against 2K in handicap game (2-stones).

The point of B3 was to prevent a double-wing shape for white (along the right and bottom)

So W4 pincer leads us into this joseki variant. Josekipedia suggests alternatives.

$$----------------$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . 4 . 8 6 . . |
$$. 9 . . 1 7 . . |$$ . . . 5 . . . . |
$$. . . . . 2 . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . 3 . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$ Josekipedia suggests playing this way: $$Wm10
$$----------------$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . 1 O . O O . . |
$$2 X . . X X . . |$$ . . . X . . . . |
$$. . . . . O . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . X . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$ Instead we played where I lost a large corner altogether with unstable shape outside. $$Wm10
$$----------------$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . O 9 O O . . |
$$. X 8 3 X X 1 . |$$ . . . X 6 5 4 . |
$$. . . . . O 7 . |$$ . . . . 2 . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . X . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$ For unrelated reasons, I won the game (SGF) against this 2K. Was the pincer at 3 and kosumi at 5 the right choice? How could I have prevented the loss of the corner? - ## 2 Answers It is difficult to tell if the pincer at 3 was the right choice. Generally, such a wide pincer is good if you plan on a moyo on the right side. I'm assuming that W1 was in the upper left and B2 a hoshi in the lower right, as in this: $$Wcm1
$$---------------------------------------$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . 1 . . . . . , . . . . . X . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . , . . . . . , . . . . . 4 . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . X . . . . . , . . . . . 2 . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$---------------------------------------  On this board, B4 looks like a reasonable pincer. Typically, you'd expect something like this: $$Bcm1
$$---------------------------------------$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0 . 4 2 8 . |
$$| . . . O . . . . . , . . . . 5 X 3 6 . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 7 . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . O . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . , . . . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . X . . . . . , . . . . . X . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$| . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$---------------------------------------  Now the black right side has nice potential to grow big. In the game, white chose the counter pincer instead, which is a good move (especially in handicap games). Your choice of the kosumi B5 was good, as it simplifies the game and leaves white less chances to start a complicated fight than other options (most notable the tsuke on top of W2. White deviation from joseki was a mistake. Let's study why. First, one correct variation: $$Wm1
$$----------------$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . O 3 O O 7 . |
$$. X 2 1 X X 5 . |$$ . . . X 4 a 6 . |
$$. . . . . O . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . X . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |


Here, white first plays W1 to force black to play an empty triangle at 4. Next, white hanes at 5, and after W7, black would need to play at a to fix the shape. But that would leave black with a pretty heavy shape (too many stones used). This heavy shape is a direct result of the kosumi B5 in the original diagram, which often leads to shape troubles. This is still acceptable in handicap games, though.

Let's compare this with the game:

$$Wm1$$ ----------------
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . O . O O 3 . |$$ . X . a X X 1 . |
$$. . . X . 4 2 . |$$ . . . . . O . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . . . . . |
$$. . . . . . . . |$$ . . . . X . . . |
 . . . . . . . . |


In this variation black does hane at 2, followed by W3 and connect at 4. Note that white a does not threaten a cut anymore, because black already fixed at 4. Thus, black is less heavy, and the variation is a little bit worse for white than joseki.

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When White hanes at 10, you need to play 11 at 13, then connect after he does. You cannot answer a contact move with a non-contact move in this situation (and most others).

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