Easy game – or is it?

hardWhen things going or looking too easy, maybe it’s about time to take a second look—just in case we miss something ‘interesting’. Here the game had been going halfway. I was Blue, with some 50-point lead and a bingo (UNEQUAL) ready to fire. Easy game? Check again.

A 50-point diff is no big deal when about 40 tiles are still in the bag. And my so-called bingo just didn’t even have a place to materialize—homeless, as some people might say. What, then? I’d still got to dump QU, one way or another. And it’s obvious that 6F: QAT is out of the question, since it would leave me with 2 U’s (which in turn if I drew the last U from the bag could make my blank really look like a stranger).

Blue: 153 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Red: 1012 setup-QUUTiles left: 38 — Tiles left to note: AAA U ? SSS

The most obvious way to some decent score by using U might be F2: QUA (32). But, wait! With some A’s still missing, there’s a good chance that Red would hook this with AQUA along the first column—might as well with the DLS and TWS all at once. No way!

Another easy one was M10: EQUAL (about 35 points). But this too was inadvisable. With 3 S’s and the other blank still up, there’s a fair chance that Red would make a very good use of the wide open TWS bingo line along the last column—and take over the lead. No go. There had got to be some other way to dump the Q (along with at least one U).

E2: QUIN was too unlively for my taste and D4: PIQUE would give Red an easy TWS without some [potential] compensation to myself. So 9E: QUAY might be just what I’m looking for. Humble score, sure. But it did come with some sensible offers.

First, it would use Q and U in one single move (then with 60 something lead) and provide me with some fairly promising leftover on the rack (EU?L)—for a bingo. Second, with only one U still missing, it would give my remaining U some leverage (by a chance to use the Q one more time, perhaps for some 30 pointer). Third, it would keep the board reasonably open (in mid-game and with a blank on hand, I surely needed some space).

Of course here Red might make use of the Q too, but at least I didn’t give him an easy boost. And talking about risk, what is a game without one? We do want the thrill, don’t we?



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