Saturday 02 May 1998
The first important point here is that you at least see the possibility of playing 5/off, 5/2. Many players would automatically make the 'forced' move 6/1, 6/3. How to evaluate such a position? The first thing is to look at the number of cross-overs (a cross-over moves a man from one quadrant of the board to the next or off the board). Here Black needs 11 cross- overs and White also needs 11 (four to bring his man on the bar to his home board and then seven to bear off). This means the position is close.
The other key factor is the blot on White's 2-point. If Black plays (b) and White enters with 22, 23, 24 or 26 hitting Black's blot then Black in turn will have the chance to hit White's blot, gaining significantly in the race. If White enters with 25 he should still hit the blot on Black's 2-point by playing Bar/23*/18 rather than play Bar/20/18.
The other benefits to (b) are that it takes a man off and maintains the 6-point for another roll. Compare the positions if White rolls 64 after Black has made his play. In case (a) White is a big favourite, in (b) he is still on the bar. The downside of (b) is that White may hit and then Black may miss, in which case White becomes a very big favourite.
Over the board it is difficult to balance these factors but, as I have said before, when in doubt be aggressive. I chose play (b), my opponent stayed on the bar with a 63, but backgammon being backgammon I lost when he rolled 66 with his final shake of the dice. Jellyfish analysis shows that Black will win the game 71 per cent of the time after play (b) but only 67 per cent after (a).
King Salman: Just five days in, Saudi Arabia's new king has already overseen a beheading
Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Amal Clooney gives excellent answer to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Mafia's wall of silence broken: Victim of Cosa Nostra's extortion rackets in its Corleone heartland co-operates with authorities for the first time ever
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
- 2 Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent answer to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: This post arises as a result of the need to...
£120 - £150 per annum: Tradewind Recruitment: I am recruiting on instruction o...
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: Our client is a small friendly village prim...
£14600 - £17600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are passionate about sup...