Tournaments 2014

The UK's Giant of Backgammon, 11-12 July, 2014

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The Winners

2013

2014

Peter Finnimore

Robert Perry

 

 

Robert Perry - UK Giant of Backgammon 2014

 

Main

1

2

3/4

3/4

5/8

5/8

5/8

5/8

Robert Perry
Mardi Ohannessian
John Hedge
Warner Solomon
Rachel Rhodes
Ginge Fullen
Bob Bruce
David Pritchard

Consolation

1

2

3/4

3/4

5/8

5/8

5/8

5/8

Adrian Jones
Rachel Rhodes
Peter Finnimore
Bob Bruce
Sean Thomas
Paul Seaton
Ginge Fullen
David Pritchard

Last Chance

1

2

3/4

3/4

Ginge Fullen
John Hedge
Jon Barnes
Bob Bruce
Simon Morecroft
Paul Plumptre
Sean Thomas
Peter Finnimore

Friday 250

1

2

3/4

3/4

5/8

5/8

Mardi Ohannessian
Rachel Rhodes
Jon Barnes
Warner Solomon
C J Uttley
Ginge Fullen

Team

1

2

Michael Crane
Peter Finnimore

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Grand Prix points for this tournament

For latest Championship table click here

23.52
17.55
13.00
9.25
17.55
23.52
8.50
27.16
10.50
13.00
17.55
20.05
40.45
9.25
9.25
20.50
Adrian Jones
Bob Bruce
David Pritchard
Dominic Harrison
Ginge Fullen
John Hedge
Jon Barnes
Mardi Ohannessian
Paul Plumptre
Paul Seaton
Peter Finnimore
Rachel Rhodes
Robert Perry
Sean Thomas
Simon Morecroft
Warner Solomon

 

Bakgammon Tour points for this tournament

For latest table click here

13.93
9.97
8.92
4.91
8.92
13.93
4.91
16.94
4.91
5.98
9.97
11.92
19.95
5.98
4.91
13.93
Adrian Jones
Bob Bruce
David Pritchard
Dominic Harrison
Ginge Fullen
John Hedge
Jon Barnes
Mardi Ohannessian
Paul Plumptre
Paul Seaton
Peter Finnimore
Rachel Rhodes
Robert Perry
Sean Thomas
Simon Morecroft
Warner Solomon

 

 

 

 

 

 

The UK's Giant of Backgammon 2014

Report by Michael Crane

 

With just two fewer entrants than last year the field lent itself to an easy 16-player draw to decide the 2014 UK Giant of Backgammon.

It got off to a good start with the Elimination Round of best-of-three 7 points matches; but it wasn't so good for defending Giant, Peter Finnimore as he fell to John Hedge. Peter dropped into the Second Chance bracket where he was overpowered by Mardi Ohannessian, and Mardi went from there through Bob Bruce and Warner Solomon (semi-final) to the Main Final.

Waiting there for him was Robert Perry with a clean sweep that began with triumphing over friend and travelling companion, David Pritchard to his semi-final win over John Hedge. Robert sat down in the 15 point with a 5-0 lead, his 'reward' for going all the way undefeated.

It was a bit of a scrappy match at times with both players racking up a good few errors and blunders. Let's take a look at what happened along the way. Robert is playing as black in all positions.

White 0..................................Black 5


Black to play 66

Robert makes a big blunder here as he points on the 1-point: 13/1*(2). It would have been far better to contain the white runner with 13/7(2) and to run out his back checkers 20/14(2). His only risk is 61 (Mardi danced 31) and his two runners would have an easy and safe move into his outer board.

However, it didn't go any further as he cashed in with an easy double/drop after Mardi danced.


White 6..................................Black 8


White to play 41

Mardi considered two options here; the double hit: 10/9*, 7/3* and 18/14, 2/1. He went with the latter and left direct 5s  - and got away with it when Robert rolled 51 and anchored 22/16 - the correct play.

The double hit was XG's 2nd choice with it's 1st being the unconsidered, 10/9*, 9/5. The game was decided when Mardi cubed Robert out to take a single point.

Later on Mardi's inability to maintain a credible home board worked against him twice in a row . . .


White 8.................................Black 12


White to play 61

Hitting here is not a good idea, but it came out 2nd on XG Roller++. That was well ahead of the actual play 8/2, 6/5 which still left two inner blots on. The best play was 24/18, 6/5. Mardi's 6/5 was good but his 6/2 wasn't.

Robert replied with 22: 12/6, 8/6, then ....


Black to play 65

There's not a lot in it, equity-wise, but XG actually favours the hit, 24/13*. Mardi went with 24/18, 8/3. Although he wasn't hit he struggled to get all his back checkers home and he resigned a gammon a bit later on.

We now jump to post-Crawford with Mardi at 4-away.

White 10...............................Black 14

From here Robert rolls three consecutive doubles; 33: 10/7, 10/4, 8/5;

55: 7/2(2), 6/1(2). Mardi rolls 53 and misses the blot.


44: 8/4(2), 5/1(2) and Mardi gets another shot. He misses with 32: 14/9.

Robert rolls 11: 7/4, 1/0 and it's looking good for the match. Mardi rolls 52: 9/2. And then ....


Black rolls 52: 5/0, 2/0 and is hit 32: 22/20*, 20/17.

There follows an exchange of hits culminating with the black checkers striving to get in off the bar. They eventually re-enter and scrabble round to narrowly save the gammon as Mardi now goes to 2-away, 1-away.

The next Game was fraught with errors and blunders from each player, both equal with 6(4) with Mardi coming out the winner to take the match to DMP.

It goes back and forth and we get to a crucial point here...


White plays 12/4 ... and is hit 61: 19*13/, 13/12!

At this point Mardi calls out in frustration, "Oh my God, I had so many chances." To which John Hedge replies, to laughter all round, "Then why didn't you take them!"

From here Mardi doesn't get a look in and is out rolled in the bearoff leaving Robert Perry the 2014 UK Giant of backgammon.

This match is now availabe in Games. And . . . this was a bugger to transcribe! Mardi is so fast that 95% of his rolls could be deemed premature inasmuch as he's rolled before his opponent has lifted his dice; that coupled with using two hands to move the checkers around meant I had to keep stopping the video playback to see what he did!

For future reference: Recorded matches featuring Mardi will always be played with a clock.

 

Main: Robert
Main: Mardi

 

In the Consolation, Peter Finnimore was knocked out in the semi-final by Adrian Jones; and Bob Bruce fell to Rachel Rhodes. In the Final Adrian got the upper hand and came out the Consolation winner. In the Last Chance, Ginge Fullen took out Jon Barnes in the semi- and John Hedge took out Bob Bruce. In the Final Ginge continued upwards and onwards and came out the victor. In the photo we have the tallest entrant with the smallest trophy and (one of) the shortest entrants with the biggest trophy!

 

Consolation: Adrian and Rachel
Last Chance: Ginge and John

 

It all kicked off with the Friday 250, and for a change Jon Barnes didn't win it! It was contested between Mardi and Rachel and Mardi took top points before he spends the next few weeks in Mykonos.

On the Saturday night the Team event was won by yours truly after I got the better of Peter Finnimore aided by a coup classique to keep me in the match.

Finally
It was a good weekend's backgammon with lots to play in the best-of-three format; it was a tiring battle for some players but enjoyable nonetheless. It was also a time for seeing old friends. One surprise was the return of Paul Seaton. Ginge Fullen returned after a heavy workload had kept him away abroad; and John Hedge popped in from Australia - just a week after his 65th birthday. We got him a cake to celebrate at dinner Saturday evening . . . and we had a second birthday cake on Sunday to celebrate Simon Morecroft's birthday.

 

Overall it was a great weekend for backgammon and a fantastic weekend for cake!

 

 

 

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