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September 8, 2012


The plays after 65R-31P-XX all seemed so logical I thought the same exact plays would apply to 65R-42P-XX.  Let's see.
But first a bit more on 65R-31P-43.  I think the main reason safe is wrong, besides being ugly, is that it doesn't improve the position at all.  Stacking a sixth man on the 6-point, while safe, does nothing else for the position.
My plays (same as 65R-42P-XX) are underlined below, and assume correct unless another answers appears in bold.  If bold, then my play is wrnog and the Bold play is correct
is Player 2

score: 0
pip: 161
Unlimited Game
Jacoby Beaver
                          pip: 156
score: 0

is Player 1
on roll, cube action?

eXtreme Gammon Version: 2.02
General thoughts:

Gameplan is still to race, though we are ahead less than after 31P

Opponent’s board is weaker than after 31P  – getting hit not as costly.
Opponent still has a priming game formation.

65. Run 24/13

64. Run 24/14

63. Run 24/15

62. Run 24/16

The more I look at this, with the sixes, probably the main thing is there is simply a lack of playable alternatives.  Regardess of startegy and big picture concerns, running is all you got since the alternatives look so lame.

61. Point 13/7, 8/7

54. Down 13/9, 13/8
Run 24/13 is right by .02 so down is a small error.  Apparently you would prefer to Run against 31 too except that it is impossible in that case so two down is the only option.  Is backgammon really so simple that "up in the race, race" is the only factor here?

53. Point 8/3, 6/3

52. Down 13/8, 13/11

51. Split 24/23, 13/8

43. Down 13/9, 13/10.  Safe is too ugly and non-constructive.

42. Point 8/4, 6/4

41. Tower 13/8

32. Down 13/11, 13/10
Note Tower 13/8 is essentially tied.  Unstacking and diversifying is highly desriable, yet you also really don't want ot get hit so the decision is close.

31. Point 8/5, 6/5

21. Down 13/10
Split 24/23, 13/11 is correct by .015.  Perhaps the blocked 62 is a factor, compared to the position after 65R-31P

66. 24/18, 13/7(3). 

55. 13/3(2)

44. 13/5(2)

33. 13/10(2), 6/3(2)

22. 13/11(2), 6/4(2)

11. 24/22, 6/5(2)

** 8/7(2), 6/5(2) is only off by .01.  The safe ace play is correct but by a smaller margin than after 65R-31P.  Could it be that getting hit, while still a joker, is less costly since opponent's board is weaker?  Having 6-4 points is worse than 6-5 points.  It's still wrong to leave the 7 shot joker, but note that the upside is still there while the downside is lessened a bit by the weaker board - hence the bold play is reasonable.
All in all, I'd say the logic behind 65R-31P-XX held up pretty well compared to 65R-42P-XX.  All plays but one (54) were exactly the same, and a couple other plays were really close.

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