A top backgammon Giant described the recent match series between Cary Hoarty (USA, age 20) and Kentaro Meijo (Japan, age 16) as some of the best backgammon he had ever seen, while world #1 and commentator on the match, Masayuki Mochizuki (Mochy) lamented surely, given their strength at such a young age, he would soon become a dinosaur of the game!
In one of Chris Bray’s fine books I seem to remember him channelling the military strategist Sun Tzu to add weight to his narrative that backgammon was a battle, a representation of war even. With this in mind I conjured up images of Cheryl Oliver, Tariq Siddiqi, and Mike Ireland, all bedecked in martial garb, approaching on the horizon, on horseback no less, coming to lay waste to all who stood in their way on that brisk November morning… in the Ealing Bowls Club. [Read more…]
The end of April saw the second St Albans Open. 64 players with the format of Round-Robin on Saturday, knockout on Sunday. St Albans used a seeding system again based on the UKBGF ratings and three 11 pointers on Saturday split the players into a Main and a Consolation. Nicky Check was the winner and the final against Tariq Siddiqi was videoed and analysed. What follows is not a full write up of the match (which can be viewed here) but a small selection of positions is given below.
It was nice to see a final where there was an insignificant luck element (according to XG). Neither player played as well as they would have liked, but in their defence it followed a hard two days of backgammon with little respite.
This position came from Sean Clennell, from the final of the most recent Bucksgammon High Rollers tournament. Sean is Blue against Anna Price (Black), and it’s only the third move of the game so we’re in a position that probably comes up regularly for most of us. Before reading on, decide what you’d do with the cube…