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Every Little Helps

There are a couple of ‘ok’ plays that are only small errors, but can you find the best move of all?

Credits

Quiz problem15 (modified), chapter 4 from "Backgammon Masterclass" by Masayuki Mochizuki and Marc Olsen


XG skin design by Rain

Analysis

Once more Quiz Factor may well kick in here, and hopefully push you towards the ambitious, and correct, 16/15 16/13 (The two other ‘small error’ moves are 11/7 or 16/15 11/8). It feels like one of those positions that are obvious when you know, but that you might not think of over the board.


You have equal board strength with better structure, the race is even, and - crucially - White has a blot in their home board. You want to start moving your checkers home and that blot gives you the perfect moment to do that - facing a stripped midpoint and creating lovely duplication of 3’s.


If White didn’t have a blot then the safer 11/7 would have been right - preserving your position and waiting for a better roll.


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