Joined: 17 Aug 2006
| Post subject: Never Forget Woolsey's Law
|In the position below, it is a money game. White holds a 2-cube and is on roll. What is the proper cube action? (Should white redouble, and if white redoubles, should black take or drop?)
As you can see below, not only should White NOT redouble, but if he does, Black should not only take, he should Beaver.
Now, keep in mind that Snowie makes every decision based on what an "expert" player should do when playing against another expert player. It assumes that each player will make all the right cube decisions and checker play decisions for the rest of the game or match.
So if you are an expert, and you are playing an expert here, you should not double, and if you are doubled, you should beaver. But what if you are not an expert. What if you are like 99% of the people who play backgammon and you're not entirely sure what to do all the time, and you also know that your opponent is not an expert either and he's not entirely sure either.
When it comes to doubling decisions, a great expert by the name of Kit Woolsey has some advice for us. If you are not sure, you are better off doubling. Why? Because you might be wrong to double and you might be right to double, but if you should double and make the mistake not to, then you've made a mistake that will probably cost you. If you were wrong to double and you make the mistake of doubling, it still might work out for you if your opponent makes a worse mistake.
In this case, in real life, I saw someone double this as white, and black dropped. So white made a big mistake, but he gave his opponent a chance to make an even bigger one by dropping.
This is a "scary" position for black. It does look like he could get hit once or twice and maybe get gammoned. There are a lot of people who would drop this cube. As for the beaver, while it is right, I showed this position to several experts, and few of them would have beavered over the board...but of course, all the experts would take.