Overview / Summary


According to Kazakh top player Serik Aktayev the end game starts when there are about 66 balls remaining in play. Before you can know how to play you need to decide for which of the following long time plans you go:

  • Make as many captures as possible in order to reach 82 balls for a win (or 81 kumalak for a draw). Read more about beating patterns.
  • Play the balls on your side ‘slowly’, so that the opponent runs out of moves first and you capture the remaining balls. How to save moves.

The sooner a player recognizes he’ll run out of moves first the better (except when you can reach 82 through captures or dropping balls in your tuzdyk), because the longer you stick with the ‘wrong’ plan, the harder it will be to turn the game around.


  • there are two ways of winning: reaching 82 balls or capture the remaining ones when the opponent runs out of moves
  • if you can reach 82 balls then go for the win, otherwise try to steal moves or to force the opponent to play big pits
  • the earlier you recognize who runs out of moves first the better
  • you will get the most moves by moving the balls in group sizes of one or two
  • forcing the opponent to play his first pit (or also others sometimes) usually steals moves (reduces the number of moves he has left)
  • if you have a tuzdyk on 1 or 2 then it’s usually best to drop your balls in the tuzdyk otherwise collect on 9 for the most moves
  • it’s often best to collect groups of three balls right before the opponent’s tuzdyk and then move one ball over the tuzdyk, like this you will get the most moves, except if he has the tuzdyk on 8, then dropping the balls in the opponent’s tuzdyk gets more moves
  • if you’ve got a tuzdyk on 1 or 2 then the reachable score is easy to calculate (or count), otherwise you can take the score you would get and multiply it by 0.6 for a rough estimation for beginners
  • the beating patterns are essential, but you don’t have to learn some pattern library by heart, it’s enough to grasp the basic idea and mechanics to be able to adapt them to similar situations

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