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Cocked Dice: a Compromise?

Posted By: Daniel Murphy
Date: Tuesday, 18 June 2013, at 3:46 p.m.

In Response To: Cocked Dice: a Compromise? (Colin Owen)

(1) Colin, I see that Justin did write in his brief post that clock stopping "should only be done on rare occasions by the TD," but I can only assume that Justin, a frequent ABT player, is familiar with the U.S. Backgammon Clock Rules and Procedures, particularly with section 5.2, which permits either player to stop both clocks for several reasons, and that if really wants to amend that section, he could say so, specifically.

(2) In the situation you describe, I believe it not improper to do what you did, which was to stop the clock and insist that your opponent not distract you, however unintentionally, during your turn and time.

I don't know what all 5.2(d)'s "to contest an opponent's action" was intended to cover, but I suppose it can be stretched to contest conduct perceived as detrimental to your right to act in turn and on your time without interruption. If one needed further justification from the rules, one might also think of 5.2(f) which allows the stopping of the clock to summon the director. You could have (but did not need to have) suggested to your opponent that you'd be happy to summon the director to decide whether you should be chastised for stopping the clocks, if it were not yet sufficiently clear to your opponent that he ought not to be interrupting you during your turn.

USBGCRP 5.2 Stopping the clock. A player stops both clocks, (a) to offer a concession, (b) to take an authorized break between games in the match, (c) to retrieve fallen dice, (d) to contest an opponent's action, (e) to move after the opponent has picked up the dice in error, or (f) to summon the Director.

I note that 5.2 neglects to mention "when a game has ended" as a very good reason to stop both clocks (when a game is ended with a dropped double is covered by rule 3.5).

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