Key Opening Rolls in Backgammon

When you play each roll in backgammon there are certain important concepts that you should be able to keep in mind to more effectively play each one. Here they are:1. Focus on the two major goals of backgammon – trying to trap the opponent’s runners behind a blockade AND escaping with your own two runners before your opponent gets the opportunity to trap them.

2. Making points is crucial and the home board points are also important. Besides, blocking, home board points will make it harder for your opponent to reenter if you were able to hit him.

3. The order that you make points is actually an important matter that you should think about. The most valuable points that you should close first are the five point, four point and bar point – in that order.

4. In order to improve your chances of making key points, you should bring spare checkers or builders so you can use them to bear on those points.

5. The perfect time to split your back checkers is during the early part of the game. This is before your opponent has closed any of his home board points.

6. It is not that important for you to play safe, that is, leaving no blots. It is less important than having a flexible position or creating builders. You should be willing to take chances very early in the game if there is a chance for you to possibly establish a good position at the quickest possible opportunity.

At the end of the day we can make a key analogy here between opening rolls in backgammon and opening moves in chess. There are clearly defined moves in each game at the start that are better than others theoretically. In chess then the best moves fight for control of the center in some way like with 1.e4, 1.d4 and 1.Nf3.

In backgammon then the best rolls are ones that begin to build a lasting strategic advantage. These are the sorts of advantages that can be taken from the opening into the middle game and beyond.

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