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OLM 20141123A The Prime Factors  CONSULTATION
Posted By: Casper Van der Tak
Date: Monday, 24 November 2014, at 4:40 a.m.
In Response To: OLM 20141123A The Prime Factors  CONSULTATION (Chuck Bower)
I still like 21/16(2) 13/3.
If we keep the 21 and plan on hanging back on the 24, we have 66 pips tied up. The dillies would have the midpoint tied up with the rest happily moving. So we have 40 more pips tied up, while being behind in the race by 20 after the roll. So we are outtimed (this is a simplistic but not entirely unreasonable way of looking at the position which can be done quickly  you can also give a bunch of identical rolls to both sides, play in your mind and assume no hitting, to see what the position would look like when you'd need to break a key point).
This assumes that we will give up the mid, so we will not have a direct when the dillies break their mid. This means that if we keep the 21 and 24 (actually I think we may want to move the guard up and out in most variations), we will settle for a weak long term holding pattern where we are outtimed. So we'd want to hit when the Dillies bring the back checkers around.
If we keep the 21, we don't want to have more checker sent back behind the 4 prime, because that would really mess us up and increase gammon losses. Additionally, our outfield presence would be key to our winning chances, so let's hang on to what we have (the mid and 11 point). So if we stay put, we should play 13/3 8/3 6/1.
If we play 21/16(2), we make it more difficult for the Dillies to get the back checkers home, and we would set up a holding structure where we are more likely to got a direct shot while maintaining a board. If we can follow up by 24/16 and still play against a back checker, that would be a great result for us. The drawback is losing the anchor inside the homeboard (more gammon losses) and vacating the 4 point.
Finally, if we play 21/16(2), the other 2 5s need to be 13/3. We need to keep priming options alive, so we should not move checkers beyond the 3 point; we want to make the 3, 4, 5 and 7 points over the next rolls (while keeping the Dillies back). 6/1(2) is pretty bad because it damages our priming chances, and we need the prime because the Dillies have one, and because hitting only catches up a bit in the race, without equalizing.
In summary: 21/16(2) 13/3 as first choice, 13/3 8/3 6/1 as second choice. No third choice.

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