Positions From The 2012 Los Angeles Open

by Steve Sax
21 June 2012

Steve Sax

The 2012 Los Angeles Backgammon Open drew top players from all over the United States and if I was going to win the tournament I would more than likely run into quite a few tough matches in my quest for victory.

And wouldn't you know it but right off the bat I would draw the 1989 World Backgammon Champion Joe Russell in the first round.

Joe had led 9-1 to eleven but somehow I tied the match at ten each when I had a four and one to play in position "L.A. 1".

I had quite a few plays to select from, but the two that most stood out to me as viable were (22-18*, 7-6) and (7-3*, 3-2).

Position L.A. 1:

is Player 2

score: 10
pip: 165
11 point match
pip: 114
score: 10

is Player 1
to play 14

1.Rollout17/3* 3/2eq: +0.447
72.34% (G:50.56% B:2.74%)
27.66% (G:6.46% B:1.06%)
Conf: ± 0.005 (+0.442...+0.452)
Duration: 5 minutes 03 seconds
2.Rollout122/18* 7/6eq: +0.446 (-0.001)
72.30% (G:49.76% B:3.93%)
27.70% (G:5.22% B:0.68%)
Conf: ± 0.005 (+0.441...+0.451)
Duration: 5 minutes 35 seconds
1 1296 Games rolled with Variance Reduction.
Moves: 3 ply, cube decisions: XG Roller

eXtreme Gammon Version: 1.21, MET: Rockwell-Kazaross

I chose to hit (22-18*) because I could escape with tempo but picking and passing (while not escaping) minimized the chance of Joe anchoring on the 22-point and having a two anchor "back game".

Hitting on the 18-point also minimizes the chance of being stuck back in Joe's board but due to the fact that he already has five checkers back and not much of a prime to contain me with makes it a toss-up as to which play I make.
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