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Gammonish positions

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VSG

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Nov 25, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/25/99
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In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a pretty
good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued up on how to
play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately not covered
in the books I own. During the couse of a match there are certain match scores
in particular as a trailer or leading when 2-away where I believe one should try
in the early game to get into a gammonish position. I'm not sure how though. I
would assume a play which may tempt your opponent off a high anchor or perhaps
to keep your back men split encouraging contact may be correct. What about
opening moves? Are there any variations from standard which may be applicable?
eg. Splitting 6-4 24/18 13/9?

Any tips appreciated as it is about time I learned how to actively play for
gammons rather than hope for the best :-)

Kind regards

Alan Webb

webby's backgammon site
www.isg-vsg.de/backgammon/BGHome.htm


Michael Manolios

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
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In article <81j5k0$md2$1...@news04.btx.dtag.de>,

Most of the time, playing to simply win is the best way to go for
the gammon too. You should alter your checker play though when the
possibility to gammon your opponent gets really high. This is usually
the case when you are trying to blitz and close out your opponent. Then
you should strive for plays that may give less wins but more gammons
that compensate for them, thus the rule "choose the play which
maximizes your equity" still applies.
Another case when you should change your play to go after the
gammon, is when you know that two or more plays are very close to each
other. Then you generally should choose the play which leads to a more
double-edged position which is usually a priming battle, or a tactical
hitting contest. Note again that the chosen play should be the one with
the higher equity, taking of course into consideration the score.
When you try to turn a game into a gammonish one, look for ways to
lead it to a priming battle, and do everything you can to prevent your
opponent to make an advanced anchor. Once he has made even his 3-point,
your gammon chances go down considerably, unless you manage to hit
several enemy blots on your way home after you 've made most of your
remaining inner points.
Thinking in this way, one can understand the little changes he must
make to his opening moves to go for a gammon. The best opening moves
(and many of the best second moves also) have very little differences
in equity, so their order may, in some cases, be affected by the score.
This applies very often when the trailer can use a gammon while the
leader cannot (post and even-away crawford).
Suppose that you roll 43 for example. There are three practically
equal moves, but in this case you should play 13/9 13/10, because this
is the move that maximizes your chances to make good inner points and
the bar, and so start leading the game to a priming battle. Even more
important is that it makes it very difficult for your opponent to split
his back checkers in order to try to go for that badly (in this case)
needed high anchor. As he cannot use gammons, there's no reason for you
to split your back checkers on the other side of the board, so you
should reject the otherwise fine moves 13/9 24/21, and 13/10 24/20.
With the same reasoning, when you roll 63 in your first move, prefer
24/18 13/10 to 24/15, with 62 (always) split with 24/18 13/11, and with
54, 52 and 32 bring two checkers down from the midpoint. (Note that
24/13 with 65 is still better than 24/18 13/8)
Another aspect is that the slot on the five point now becomes much
more attractive (except when in even-away post-crawford) as it makes
more frequently the five point, while you don't have to worry so much
about a third checker being sent back, as you are not afraid of
gammons. This means that you should slot with 21, but I have to admit
I 'm not sure about 41 and 51 and I don't have my rollout results
available right now.
Finally, if your first roll is 64, now the 8/2 6/2 is even much
clearer that the other two choices as it makes a inner point that very
often becomes really useful in a hitting contest, something that you
are after anyway.
--
We play one and only money game through our whole life...


Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

Chuck Bower

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
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In article <81j5k0$md2$1...@news04.btx.dtag.de>, VSG <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:
>In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a pretty
>good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued up on how to
>play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately not covered
>in the books I own. During the couse of a match there are certain match scores
>in particular as a trailer or leading when 2-away where I believe one should try
>in the early game to get into a gammonish position. I'm not sure how though. I
>would assume a play which may tempt your opponent off a high anchor or perhaps
>to keep your back men split encouraging contact may be correct. What about
>opening moves? Are there any variations from standard which may be applicable?
>eg. Splitting 6-4 24/18 13/9?
>
>Any tips appreciated as it is about time I learned how to actively play for
>gammons rather than hope for the best :-)

You want to play for closeouts and primes. Holding games (that is, games
with advanced anchors) aren't gammonish. With a 64 opening, make the 2-point.
62, 63 played 24/18 + builder (but isn't that how most people play it at
money play?). With 43,54,32,52--bring down two builders from the midpoint.
Slot with 21 (optional with 51--probably not with 41). Other openings are
played the same as $$.


Chuck
bo...@bigbang.astro.indiana.edu
c_ray on FIBS


dmg

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
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On Thu, 25 Nov 1999 12:11:22 +0100, "VSG" <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:

|In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a pretty
|good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued up on how to
|play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately not covered
|in the books I own. During the couse of a match there are certain match scores
|in particular as a trailer or leading when 2-away where I believe one should try
|in the early game to get into a gammonish position. I'm not sure how though. I
|would assume a play which may tempt your opponent off a high anchor or perhaps
|to keep your back men split encouraging contact may be correct. What about
|opening moves? Are there any variations from standard which may be applicable?
|eg. Splitting 6-4 24/18 13/9?
|
|Any tips appreciated as it is about time I learned how to actively play for
|gammons rather than hope for the best :-)
|

|Kind regards
|
|Alan Webb
|
|webby's backgammon site
|www.isg-vsg.de/backgammon/BGHome.htm

As a general rule, concentrating opening moves on your side of the
board leads to more gammons. Here are some examples. They are based
on my recollection of JF evaluations; I haven't seen roll outs on
them, so corrections are welcome.

Bringing a builder down instead of splitting the back men:

23: 13/11, 13/10 instead of 24/21, 13/11
25: 13/8, 13/11 instead of 24/22, 13/8
34: 13/10, 13/9 instead of 24/20, 13/10
45: 13/9, 13/8 instead of 24/20, 13/9

Bringing a builder down instead of running:

36: 24/18, 13/10 instead of 24/15
46: 24/18, 13/9 instead of 24/14
(8/2, 6/2 yields even more gammons)

Slotting instead of splitting the back men:

12: 13/11, 6/5 instead of 24/23, 13/11
14: 13/9, 6/5 instead of 24/23, 13/9
15: 13/8, 6/5 instead of 24/23, 13/8
26: 13/5 instead of 24/18, 13/11

Building your board instead of moving the back men:

33: 8/5(2), 6/3(2) instead of 24/21(2), 13/10(2)
44: 13/5(2) instead of 24/20(2), 13/9(2)
46: 8/2, 6/2 instead of 24/14

Since the extra gammons usually come at the cost of some single-point
wins, most of these moves give up some equity overall. I'm not sure
how to go about deciding when the "gammonish" move is the right
choice. With a couple of exceptions, I generally stick with the move
with the best equity unless I'm very far behind in the match. I've
seen Kit Woolsey play 13/7, 13/10 with a 36, and 6/5, 6/4 with a 21 on
a couple of occasions where he was very far behind. The double slot
really caught my attention, and I've used it to turn a couple of
matches around.

One last point: I sometimes see players make certain "gammonish" moves
at times which I would consider them a mistake. For example, trailing
in a post-Crawford game where the opponent has a "free-drop," I think
it's wrong to play 13/11, 6/5 with an opening 21. Your opponent gets
to roll before you double. If he hits he takes; if he misses he
drops. So the only way you will get to continue the game is if you
are decidedly behind.

times when not so good

_____
dmg

To respond via email, replace "USERNAME" with "demiga" in my address.

VSG

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
to

Chuck Bower <bo...@bigbang.astro.indiana.edu> schrieb in im Newsbeitrag:
81kusj$uc2$1...@flotsam.uits.indiana.edu...

> In article <81j5k0$md2$1...@news04.btx.dtag.de>, VSG <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:
> >In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a pretty
> >good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued up on how
to
> >play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately not
covered
> >in the books I own. During the couse of a match there are certain match
scores
> >in particular as a trailer or leading when 2-away where I believe one should
try
> >in the early game to get into a gammonish position. I'm not sure how though.
I
> >would assume a play which may tempt your opponent off a high anchor or
perhaps
> >to keep your back men split encouraging contact may be correct. What about
> >opening moves? Are there any variations from standard which may be
applicable?
> >eg. Splitting 6-4 24/18 13/9?
> >
> >Any tips appreciated as it is about time I learned how to actively play for
> >gammons rather than hope for the best :-)
>
> You want to play for closeouts and primes. Holding games (that is, games
> with advanced anchors) aren't gammonish. With a 64 opening, make the 2-point.
> 62, 63 played 24/18 + builder (but isn't that how most people play it at
> money play?). With 43,54,32,52--bring down two builders from the midpoint.
> Slot with 21 (optional with 51--probably not with 41). Other openings are
> played the same as $$.
>
>
> Chuck
> bo...@bigbang.astro.indiana.edu
> c_ray on FIBS

Thanks a lot Chuck, your post has helped me a lot. I think I'll set up and some
positions in JF and play them out so I get a feel for creating gammon chances.
Excellent post.

Kind regards

Alan Webb


VSG

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
to

dmg <USER...@hotmail.com> schrieb in im Newsbeitrag:
383f27ca...@news.mindspring.com...

> On Thu, 25 Nov 1999 12:11:22 +0100, "VSG" <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:
>
> |In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a pretty
> |good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued up on how
to
> |play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately not
covered
> |in the books I own. During the couse of a match there are certain match
scores
> |in particular as a trailer or leading when 2-away where I believe one should
try
> |in the early game to get into a gammonish position. I'm not sure how though.
I
> |would assume a play which may tempt your opponent off a high anchor or
perhaps
> |to keep your back men split encouraging contact may be correct. What about
> |opening moves? Are there any variations from standard which may be
applicable?
> |eg. Splitting 6-4 24/18 13/9?
> |
> |Any tips appreciated as it is about time I learned how to actively play for
> |gammons rather than hope for the best :-)
> |

Another excellent post dmg. thanks for your response. i will take heed.

regards

Alan


VSG

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Nov 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/26/99
to

Michael Manolios <mm...@tee.gr> schrieb in im Newsbeitrag:
81lbe6$re8$1...@nnrp1.deja.com...
> In article <81j5k0$md2$1...@news04.btx.dtag.de>,

> "VSG" <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:
> > In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have a
> pretty
> > good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued
> up on how to
> > play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately
> not covered
> > in the books I own.
<snip>

Most of the time, playing to simply win is the best way to go for
> the gammon too. You should alter your checker play though when the
> possibility to gammon your opponent gets really high.

<snip>

Thanks for answering Michael :-)

Yes i agree. it is like all things new I must be careful not to kick the
proverbial out of it and choose my gammon play moment carefully. I can imagine
otherwise I'll be losing too much equity if I make playing for gammons a habit.
Many thanks for your comment.

regards

Alan webb

webby's Backgammon Site
www.isg-vsg.de/backgammon/BGHome.htm


Michael Manolios

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Nov 29, 1999, 3:00:00 AM11/29/99
to
In article <383f27ca...@news.mindspring.com>,
USER...@hotmail.com (dmg) wrote:

> On Thu, 25 Nov 1999 12:11:22 +0100, "VSG" <vsg...@t-online.de> wrote:
>
> |In the past I have come across the term "gammonish position" I have
a pretty
> |good idea what a gammonish position looks like but am not too clued
up on how to
> |play from outset for a gammon. playing for gammons is unfortunately
not covered
_____
> dmg

I finally checked my rollouts. They are JF 3.0, Level 6, 9072
games, concerning the first moves for money game, double match point,
and all cases when gammons don't count for either player. The standard
deviation is less than 0.005 (usually 0.003). So, when gammons count
for the first player but not for the second, (even-away abd post
Crawford)we have:

64: the 2-point is clear
63, 62: 24/18 13/x, clearly. Note that 13/5 with 62 is very far behind,
as in every other case. So far behind that I absolutely trust the JF's
rollouts.
54: 13/8 24/20 is still the best but 13/8 13/9 (with more gammons) is
completely acceptable.
52: 13/8 24/22 is still the best but 13/8 13/11 (with more gammons) is
acceptable.
51: 13/8 24/23 remains best. 13/8 6/5 (with more gammons)is still
weaker.
43: 13/9 13/10 (with more gammons) becomes best.
41: 13/9 24/23 definetely. 13/9 6/5 is still far behind. (Note that for
money 13/9 6/5 is not even second best: 24/20 24/23 is better. This
explains why 41 is the worst first roll, the only one which normally
should be followed by a pass in a free drop situation.)
32: 24/21 13/11 is still best, but now 13/10 13/11 is completely
acceptable.
21: 13/11 6/5 is the only case that the slotting on the 5 point becomes
best in these cases.

All rollouts are available to anyone via e-mail.

Barton

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Dec 1, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/1/99
to

> Another aspect is that the slot on the five point now becomes much
>more attractive (except when in even-away post-crawford) as it makes
>more frequently the five point, while you don't have to worry so much
>about a third checker being sent back, as you are not afraid of
>gammons. This means that you should slot with 21, but I have to admit
>I 'm not sure about 41 and 51 and I don't have my rollout results
>available right now.
> Finally, if your first roll is 64, now the 8/2 6/2 is even much
>clearer that the other two choices as it makes a inner point that very
>often becomes really useful in a hitting contest, something that you
>are after anyway.

Could someone please explain to me what the following terms mean:

1)Money game
2)even-away, 2-away,etc.

Thanks for the info


Chuck Bower

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Dec 1, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/1/99
to
In article <38461a52...@ny.news.verio.net>,
Barton <Bar...@verio.net> wrote:

The most common form of backgammon is one player vs. another, where
each game is independent. Your goal is to wins as many "points" each game
as possible. In the end you tally the points and one player is a net winner
by so many points. This is often played for real money, but even if it's
only for pride, this form is commonly referred to as "money play".

At standard matchplay, the goal is to reach a certain number of points
first: e.g. you are playing to 7 points. It doesn't matter if you win
7-0 or 7-6. The result is reported the same, either you win the match or
you lose it. When giving a position, you could say "the score is white 5,
black 3 in a match to 7", or you could write "5-3/7 in favor of white" or
"white needs 2, black needs 4", or "white leads 2-away, 4-away" or "black
trails -4,-2" or... These are equivalent scores, just different jargon/
notation.

As I write this, I realize that you may not even understand what I
mean by 'points'. If that is the case, I suggest you visit one of the many
helpful and informative WWW sites, for example:

http://www.bkgm.com/

There you will find rules, glossaries, links to other sights, and so much
more.

dmg

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Dec 1, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/1/99
to
On Wed, 01 Dec 1999 12:54:49 GMT, Bar...@verio.net (Barton) wrote:

|Could someone please explain to me what the following terms mean:
|
|1)Money game

Here is the definition from Tom Keith's Backgammon glossary, which can
be found on his Backgammon Galore page at http://www.bkgm.com/ :

"Money Play - The normal style of competition in which games are
played independently and the competitors bet on the result. For each
game, the loser pays the winner the agreed initial stake multiplied by
the value of the doubling cube and further multiplied by two for a
gammon or three for a backgammon."

This is in contrast to:

"Match Play - The competition system used in tournaments in which two
participants play a series of games which ends when one player
accumulates a required number of points. Each game is worth one, two,
or three points (for a single game, gammon, or backgammon) multiplied
by the value of the doubling cube."


|2)even-away, 2-away,etc.

These refer to the score in match play, specifically to the number of
points a player needs to win the match. For example, if you are
leading a 5-point match 4-2, the score can also be stated 1-away;
3-away. Though this terminology sounds awkward, it is handy for
analysis because checker and cube strategies are dependant not on
match length but on the number of points needed in order to win the
match. For instance, if you are leading an 11-point match 9-5, it's
no different from leading a 7-point match 5-1. In each case you are
2-away; 6-away, and your checker and cube play should be the same.

"even-away" means the player needs an even (though unspecified) number
of points in order to win the match. This is relevant in
post-Crawford games. An explanation of why this is so can be found at
Tom Keith's site at http://www.bkgm.com/articles/mpd.html under the
section called "Post-Crawford Strategy."

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