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Backgammon Turnaments

Backgammon, the game of skill, luck and intuition has reached the zenith of its popularity today.
This is mainly due to the vast array of tournaments and competitions that are taking place all over the world.

In the beginning, backgammon used to be played as per the rules of the host country. As the game has stretched its wings worldwide, the standardization of the rules and regulations has become inevitable. The rules have undergone several changes before finally reaching standardization in the year 1990.

The tradition of backgammon is that the number of matches played in tournaments is always odd. Matches generally start at 9 and may be increased to 13 or 15 matches. The more the merrier for the strategic experts.


There is a clear-cut guideline regarding even the recess between two games, which is 5 minutes (for a match of 13 points or less), violation of which may lead to penalty points, rewarded to the opponent. Even slow play (as observed by the Director) is cautioned followed by penalties. However for games with larger points may have different recess time at the discretion of the director.

The dice should be thrown correctly for bounce and roll. The reading can be taken only when both dice have landed and are rested flat on the board. Handling of checkers should be done very neatly. Any illegal move of the opponent should immediately be brought into the notice of the director.

According to the United States Backgammon Tournament Rules & Procedures, a gammon or backgammon does not necessitate double and at the final stage as the Crawford rule is to be followed. The Double and redouble need to be clearly, verbally announced and rejection to that effect may be announced as 'Pass'.

In case of dispute the Director’s decision is final and liable to all.

Special backgammon Turnaments Rules

Jacoby Rule

The Jacoby Rule is named after the late great gamesman Oswald Jacoby. Jacoby rule states that gammon and backgammon will come into effect, if and only if the player has announced a double and is accepted by the opponent. The Jacoby Rule is mostly applied in Money games to encourage a player for higher points in a game of double. This brings speed to the game, where the player never waits for the gammon or backgammon; rather he announces a double for amassing faster points. Jacoby rules are applicable essentially for money play but hardly used in Match play.

Crawford Rule

The Crawford rule is named after John R. Crawford. When either of the players is one point from victory then the opponent cannot announce a double in the subsequent game. In this particular game where double is prohibited, is called the Crawford game. Scientifically, even if a double is announced and accepted by the player approaching victory, it will be nullified because point 1 or 2 can create hardly any difference for him. Rather the double may benefit the opponent who is losing. If the Crawford game remains indecisive in terms of a final win or loss then all the rules of double and redouble will be back in place from the subsequent games. This rule has been accepted worldwide. Even United States Backgammon Tournament Rules & Procedures follow Crawford rule at the closing stage of any tournament.

Holland Rule

It is an extension of the Crawford rule where the rule says that after the Crawford game, the trailer can announce a double after completion of two valid rolls of both the players. The Holland rule could not sustain in the long run because of its confusing nature and complexity in implementation.

Jacoby Rules and Crawford Rules are followed even in the online games today. The online competitors declare their special terms and conditions (if any) in their site very clearly for the convenience of the players, because you may find many players from different parts of the world are playing simultaneously in the same game.


Backgammon tournaments is increasing in popularity as more people take up the game; this has resulted in a number of additional events and competitions attracting the best players in the world to compete. To keep the pace of the game flowing and the level of skill increasing, daily tournaments online are happening right across the web, as online backgammon like look to increase their customer bases.

Many of these online tournaments follow the same guidelines as offline tournaments, but for those new to the game here are few general rules to observe when playing.

In signing up to a tournament, each player agrees to play and abide by all the rules of the Daily Games and to follow instructions provided by the hosts.

All players must be ready to play when they sign in. Any intentional delaying of the starting the match or finishing the match by any player will result in immediate disqualification.

All matches are to be rated unless otherwise agreed upon by both players. It is up to the invitee to read the invitation and accept or change it.

All matches are to be played under Crawford rule only

All wins are reported promptly to the tournament Manager after each match.

Premature or false reports of wins may lead to an immediate forfeiture.

All backgammon tournaments are single elimination format.

One re-entry per player, per tournament, per computer until the tournament is filled. Your current match must be completed and you must be back on the matchboard before requesting a re-entry.
An asterisk (*) by a player's name indicates a reentry.

No player shall be allowed to enter under more than one nickname per any one tournament. This violation will result in immediate forfeiture of all nicknames and possible banning from daily tournaments for a period of time.

If the connection to the site is lost, a player will have 5 minutes to reconnect or be disqualified from the tournament. Players who are connected but do not respond have 2 minutes to respond to the host, their opponent or start the tournament match. If after 2 minutes, there is still no response, the player maybe excluded from the tournament.

All tournament matches should be recorded.

Players are not allowed to play matches outside the tournament brackets. This includes playing bots and/or playing any another server. Any player doing so will find they are disqualified from the tournament by the host and possible other games too.

If two players have an unfinished match with each other, open a chat with tournament staff, they will provide suggestions on how to proceed.

If a tie occurs at the end of the playing period, the players involved will be notified immediately usually via the chat system. The players will have 24 hours from notification to play the tie breaking match. This match should mirror the tournament in which the tie occurred. The players should schedule their matches and notify the tournament staff again using the chat system. The message should include the date and time of the match.

The winner should report the results to the tournament Manager using the message system. If the match is not played by the deadline, the player who has attempted contact with the other player will win the tie breaker. If the match is not played by the deadline and both players have attempted to schedule the match or neither player has attempted contact, a random draw decides the winner of the tie.

All tournament matches must be finished at the time of the next match. A refusal to resume and finish a tournament match may result in the player involved being banned from daily tournaments for a period of time at the discretion of the Tournament Manager.

Rude or abusive behavior during the tournaments will not be tolerated and may lead to the immediate disqualification. Continuous complaints of a player's behavior may result in that player being banned altogether.

Once the match has started, no player is allowed to use mechanical or written aids, i.e., Jellyfish, Snowie, or backgammon books to assist them. Equally, no player may receive assistance from another person in the playing of the match. Spectators also must remain silent while observing a match.

All tournament matches are kept public. Any disruptions by watchers during the tournament match, will lead to exclusion.

Spectators cannot comment on plays. Players can request the Tournament Manager to bar one or more spectators from watching their matches.

Anyone misrepresenting their account in a daily Tournament risks forfeiture from that tournament, as well as suspension from the site. If a player is disqualified in a tournament, that player may not re-enter the same tournament.

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