Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Remembering to Shoot the Cochonnet

Sometimes players can be so focused on the present layout of boules that they forget that the cochonnet's position can be changed - and so will the swing of the game.

Measuring between 25 and 35 millimeters, the cochonnet seems such a tiny target but don't discount the vast benefits (and possible dire consequences) of displacing it's location.

Article 13 should be knowlegeable to each and every petanquer:

If, during an end, the cochonnet becomes dead, one of three cases can apply:

a) If both teams have boules to play, the end is void.

b) If only one team has boules left to play, then this team scores as many points as it has boules to play.

c) If neither team has boules to play, the end is void.

Let's say your team is down to it's last two boules, with no defensive boules positioned, and the opposing team has 4 or 5 boules left to use - then attempting to hit the cochonnet out of bounds with the second-to-last boule seems like a good strategy. If it fails, then at least you can still attempt to point defensively with your last boule.

But, if the shoe is on the other foot; the opposition has used up all of its boules; the cochonnet is in a difficult place to point; and your team has 4 or 5 to use, then why not take the opportunity to knock out that cochonnet for many points!

Moving (pushing/sweeping) the cochonnet back to a group of your own boules is also a nice strategy to keep in mind. Sometimes a position that looks pretty dire can turn around with a push of the cochonnet.

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