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Another way to absolve Stick!

Posted By: Joe Russell
Date: Saturday, 1 September 2012, at 1:08 a.m.

In Response To: Another way to absolve Stick! (Bob Koca)

Analyzing the frequency of errors at all error sizes and comparing them to others will likely to a story. The interpretation of that story may be clear or it may be muddled, but it could possibly help in resolving this issue. While there is convincing statistical evidence to suggest Stick cheats, I do not believe it, even if I have not been as intimate with him as Fay and do not know him as well. I have seen so many things like this it my life. I will mention two: (1) I played in the first IIBGF at around 2.3. My online PR is 4.0 for over 1000 matches, which is contrary to Iancho's records, which can show the effect of small sample sizes. I don't recall how many matches I played in that IIBGF, but it was quite a few and they were long. I was not cheating, although statistically it could look that way; (2) My late wife, after having not played backgammon for over 20 years played me 3 7-point matches and I analyzed them on GNU and she averaged 1.9 for the three matches. Again, after not having played for over 20 years. This blew me away. She was a very strong player, maybe one of the better female players in the world, which we will never know, having played in one tournament and finishing in the semifinals (beginner in Monte Carlo) and having played only once for money against a friend of mine that was a strong intermediate for $5 a point and winning 85 points. But in no way was she the best player in the world. That 1.9 over 3 7-point matches was a real outlier, much greater than Stick's outliers, in my opinion. She may have been a 4.5 or 6.5 player, but 1.9, I don't think so.

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