Forum Archive : Tournaments

First backgammon tournament

From:   Mislav Radica
Date:   16 May 2007
Subject:   Impressions from European Championship...
Forum:   GammOnLine

The European Championship was held in Velden (Austria). It was my first
live tournament ever. During the tournament I made some conclusions which
can be useful for me for another tourney and maybe for some readers too.
Any opinions and comments are very welcome.

The first think that I found was that counting pips (just difference) from
the beginning of the game is not so difficult as I expected. After few
warm-up matches it becomes pretty easy. Off course, you can stop with
counting when the position becomes clear and count absolute pips for both
play when considering a racing double.

The second thing which I found is important was that it is better not to
play in small jackpots and side events while you waiting for your next
match. To make some results you have to play well in 3-4 matches in the row
and if you play too much backgammon you get tired and play with a lack of
motivation which is a danger. You just have to want to win the match. In my
next tourney no more jackpots.

I was surprised how cool I was during play. I expected more steaming but
was surprised how much I enjoyed to be calm in the most exciting parts of
the match. It is something which you can't find in online playing. Such
feeling when you calmly shaking you dices looking for the joker which can
save your life and stay calm further when you get it.  This is drug that I
discovered on this tourney. Off course it applies in opposite direction
too. When your opponent rolls joker ....

It can also be useful to play one short match vs gnubg in the morning
before matches just to be in better shape. And if you can, don't drinks
beers between matches, only water.

Raccoon  writes:

> ... what I found was that counting pips (just difference) from the
> beginning of the game is not so difficult as I expected.

I think most players would find pipcounting to be easy with just a few
hours of practice. I've never bothered keeping a running total from the
beginning of the game, but some players do. My practice in games where a
cube decision will depend on the pipcount is to count pips only once,
several rolls before the possible cube action (by either player). Usually
you don't even need to pause to count; you can do it on your opponent's
time. Having counted once, it's easy to keep running totals for a few
moves. For instance, if you count a position and decide that you're a
little short of a double, then you can easily tell by the rolls that come
when you've reached a doubling position.

Chuck Bower  writes:

> Play one short match vs gnubg in the morning ... just to be in better
> shape.

I've never heard of this but it makes sense. Since I don't have a local
club or other forms of local competition, the only time I play over a real
board is at tournaments. I find that when I arrive I get acclimated by
playing a match, either by entering a side event or just with a friend.

> Don't drink beer between matches ...

I'll raise a glass to that advice!
Did you find the information in this article useful?          

Do you have any comments you'd like to add?     



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