17. Thick and Thin Positions
Finding the Weak Point

by Richard Bozulich

Positions, or groups of stones, are often referred to as being either thick or thin. Thick positions usually have eye shape and are invulnerable to attacks. On the other hand, thin positions are those that do not have eye shape or may not be able to easily get that second eye crucial for life. In the middle game a player should always be on the lookout for thin groups and figure out ways to attack them. Of course, strengthening your own thin groups is a high priority.

Black to play
Problem. Black to play
All of Black's groups scattered throughout the board are thick, but White has a weak group on the right side. White gingerly runs away into the center with the marked stone. At first glance it seems as if White has made good shape, but White's group is still thin. Where is the weak point in White's position?