13/10 6/1*. I’ve turned the cube. I’m down in the race, but I’ve got a better board. You’ve got two blots in your board. I’m anchored. I’m going after you.
6-1, 8-5. With 2 blots exposed, the hit feels right.
However the bot disagrees with all 3 and says 13/10, 13/8.
Bar/24, 2/1*(2), 8/7. I think I need to put White on the bar since he will attack me otherwise. This does that in the safest way possible.
But it looks like the bot disagrees and says bar/24, 8/7, 8/6.
Gerry Tansey’s analysis:
6/1* 2/1. Hitting loose on the ace point is problematic not only because you can get hit back and lose (sometimes a gammon, but lots of these games end with a cube turn), but when you hit, you may not cover. Not hitting is problematic because you can lose the race (or get hit with a fly shot). And you don’t win any gammons. But the shifting play vastly increases the number of covering rolls, and if you survive, you will very likely cover and/or hit the second checker. I’m 80% sure I got this one right.
And Gerry was 100% right!
Matt Easley’s take:
8/5, 2/1. Need to make progress getting in. Opponent has too much timing. I’m not willing to slot the 4 point and give a lot of shots.
8/5, 2/1. This was really tough for me. If White’s board were stronger, it would be a no-brainer to make the safe play. If White’s front position were weaker, I’d take the plunge and slot 8/4 (Hey, I can win a gammon if he breaks his anchor and hits me). I decided that White’s position is just strong enough that leaving no shots now (and no shots next time) is attractive. The fact that the value of my gammons is slightly reduced at the score is another factor, though I play safe for money too. I could easily be wrong here.
Good for Matt & Gerry!
Gerry Tansey’s play:
1. 15/9 6/1*. I don’t think I could bring myself to make this play for money (where I’d probably just make the 4), but the reduced cost of losing a gammon makes it more attractive now. I prevent my opponent from escaping completely next roll, plus I give him numbers like 46, 45, 36, 35, 26, 24, and 44 to shake another blot loose.
And Gerry was right!