2023 - Position 88
Updated: May 18
Match Play. Blue trails 7-10 to 11 (post-Crawford). How should Blue play 65?
Of all the problems I have set this year I think this the most difficult and complex and it will probably appear in The Times in due course.
XG’s 3-ply evaluation has 17/11, 9/4* best but this turns out be a quadruple blunder on rollout.
The two tops plays are 8/2, 7/2 and 7/1, 6/1 but I am currently extending the rollouts so don’t take that as gospel. The idea of 8/2, 7/2 looks to be to squeeze White off the 3-pt anchor with fives without ever allowing double sixes.
I admit I would have played 14/8, 9/4* but clearly that is wrong.
There are some positions in backgammon that are incredibly complex, and this would appear to be one of them. I hope to come back to this later in the year. For now, please accept 8/2, 7/2 as the best play with 7/1, 6/1 as a close second.