Settling For A Sparkler On The Fourth of July

by Steve Sax
24 July 2012

Steve Sax

At the annual Michigan Summer Backgammon Championships held between July 5th and July 8th 2012 I comprised a match record of ten wins and only four losses.

You might think that could result in some dramatic fireworks, but I had to settle for the modest glow of a few simple sparklers as I failed to win enough consecutive matches to cash in either the "Michigan Masters", the "MSC", main flight or consolation.

In this month's article we'll take a look at some interesting positions from my last attempt to light up the sky during a warm southern Michigan summer night.

As I was being eliminated from the consolation of the MSC, they were already calling an eight player draw for the "Firecracker 200", a jackpot tournament held on Saturday evening as a last chance to compete for glory for those eliminated from all other events.

I didn't think I would be able to get in but I inquired tournament staffer Mary Ann Meese and she assured me they would fill a sixteen player bracket.

I entered the second half of the draw and drew Ken Bame from the San Francisco bay area. Ken has become a pretty good player so I knew my task would not be an easy one.

Ken had me on the ropes as he led 7-3 to nine when I arrived at "Sparkler 1". I am down 18 pips and out-boarded 3-2 but since one of those points is his ace-point and his back checkers are not split can I consider doubling here?

Position Sparkler 1:

is Player 2

score: 7
pip: 137
9 point match
pip: 155
score: 3

is Player 1
on roll, cube action?

Analyzed in Rollout
No Double
  Player Winning Chances: 60.17% (G: 20.46% B: 0.88%)
  Opponent Winning Chances: 39.83% (G: 14.54% B: 1.05%)
  Player Winning Chances: 60.45% (G: 20.98% B: 0.86%)
  Opponent Winning Chances: 39.55% (G: 15.83% B: 0.93%)
Cubeless Equities
No Double:+0.197
Cubeful Equities
No Double:+0.700 (-0.071)
Double/Drop:+1.000 (+0.229)
Best Cube action: Double / Take
Rollout details
1296 Games rolled with Variance Reduction.
Moves: 3 ply, cube decisions: XG Roller
Confidence No Double: ± 0.012 (+0.688...+0.712)
Confidence Double: ± 0.014 (+0.757...+0.785)
Double Decision confidence: 100.0%
Take Decision confidence: 100.0%
Duration: 9 minutes 00 second

eXtreme Gammon Version: 1.21, MET: Rockwell-Kazaross

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Article text Copyright © 1999-2018 Steve Sax and GammonVillage Inc.

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