Portlandia Invitational Backgammon Tournament Results

We had a fabulous turnout for this special tournament — 15 players showed up for the High Roller, and 12 for the Low Roller event. The majority of players were from Portland, but we had a good turnout from Seattle, Bellingham, Eugene, and even further beyond.

I got to Lucky Lab about 10 til noon, and found at least a dozen people already waiting for the place to open. Registration took until about 12:15, then we got off to the races. I’m not going to run through the whole brackets, but it was amazing to see basically the whole room taken over by backgammon boards.

The High Roller ended up being dominated by Seattle players, in an ironic reversal of the Seattle Winter Classic, where Dave and I took 1st/2nd. In the Portlandia, the winner was Alex, with Molly taking second. In the consolation bracket, Dave redeemed Portland, keeping Pete from sweeping the prize money for the bracket.

The Low Roller was dominated by locals, but because of the byes, it ended up with a number of people sitting around a long time between matches. Bodger ended up winning the bracket over Julie, who was nonetheless happy after clawing her way back to a 9-7 loss from an 8-1 deficit. In the consolation bracket, Buzz won out over Nathan, playing in extended overtime — I left as they got started a little after 7:00 pm. So it was a very long day of backgammon!

I recorded most of my matches, although the camera randomly died partway through the last one. However, I vividly remember one position from the last game, which did not manage to get recorded. This was my match against Pete in the consolation bracket. I dominated the first few games, and was leading 4-0 in our match to 7. Pete doubled me early in the last game, and I took, and managed to turn it around to get to this really dominant position.

Screenshot 2024-05-25 9.51.12 PM

There are a few things that can go wrong from me here – but 22 out of 36 rolls for me are amazing. 85% of the time, I win from here, 67% of the time I win a gammon. But just in case, I figured I should just go ahead and cash. But Pete took the cube, and threw it back to me on his next turn…

Screenshot 2024-05-25 10.09.45 PM

Obviously, if you take this cube, you’re going to give it back. I should have thought harder about offering it. This was a fun one — the technical analysis of my action was “Too good to redouble – take”. I then rolled a 65, leaving a return shot. Pete recubed me to 8, and I took (properly). Pete then did the critical thing, of rolling a 4. He proceeded to close out his board, and win the game and the match.

All in all, a great day of lots of backgammon – and we’re doing it again in just about a week with the Championship Qualifier #2 on Sunday June 2nd. Hope to see you there!