By Bill Davis
The Philip Morris International Championship of Backgammon, July 14-18, 1976 at the Monte Carlo Casino in Monaco, was the biggest event of 1976. Over 300 players attended two divisions of play. Stephen Raphael chaired the event with Lewis Deyong directing.
British expert and “Backgammon For Profit” author Joe Dwek won $46,000 by defeating Kiumars Motakhasses (Iran) in an exciting 25-24 nail-biter. At 24-all, Dwek faced what he called “the most important play I would have to make in 1976!”
Back in 1976, the concept of a computer providing players with the best move was unheard of. With a $28,000 money swing between first and second place, Dwek had to make his 4-2 play based solely on what he thought (not what XG thought) was his best chance to bring the game home.
Here’s Dwek’s personal account from the November 1976 International Backgammon News. How would you have played the 4-2? eXtreme Gammon rollout data (3600 trials, 3-ply) is shown below the article.