Winning the California State Backgammon Championship

by Steve Sax
20 December 2012

Steve Sax

In 2004, when Gammon Associates changed one of its bi-annual tournaments to the California State Backgammon Championship, I found myself in the finals of the winner’s bracket. I had a 7-5 lead to 11 and on a two cube, was gammoning Jona Alexander for the match and a spot in the finals.

Jona turned around the game eventually winning a four cube and then the next game to reach the finals. He would defeat Emil Mortuk in the finals and become the first California State Backgammon Champion.

In the next seven "Cal State's", I wouldn't come close and it seemed like one of the jewels in the crown on the ABT tour was just too elusive a prize to capture.

In 2012, it seemed like it was business as usual as I trailed Jeff Frangos 9-4 to 11 in the first round. However I wasn't going to give up that easily and I ground my way back to a victory by winning the next seven games.

In the second round, I drew Texas Backgammon Championship director Bill Riles where he doubled me trailing 1-0 to 11 in position "Cal State 1A".

Position Cal State 1A:

is Player 2

score: 0
pip: 116
11 point match
pip: 146
score: 1

is Player 1
on roll, cube action?

Analyzed in Rollout
No Double
  Player Winning Chances: 60.19% (G: 44.33% B: 0.48%)
  Opponent Winning Chances: 39.81% (G: 10.70% B: 0.58%)
  Player Winning Chances: 60.13% (G: 45.03% B: 0.46%)
  Opponent Winning Chances: 39.87% (G: 10.93% B: 0.66%)
Cubeless Equities
No Double:+0.544
Cubeful Equities
No Double:+0.554 (-0.265)
Double/Drop:+1.000 (+0.180)
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 (+0.542...+0.567)
Confidence Double: ± 0.022 (+0.798...+0.841)
Double Decision confidence: 100.0%
Take Decision confidence: 100.0%
Duration: 7 minutes 05 seconds

eXtreme Gammon Version: 1.21, MET: Rockwell-Kazaross

Bill is ahead 30 pips and has good diversification to improve his position. He has one's and two's to make a five-point board and sixes to hit as well as three's to move up in my board.
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Article text Copyright © 1999-2018 Steve Sax and GammonVillage Inc.

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