Backgammon is the most highly-regarded work on the subject, often referred to as “The Bible” of the game. Written between and by Paul Magriel and . Paul Magriel, a former youth chess champion who traded game boards to become known as the world’s best backgammon player, then turned. Results 1 – 30 of Backgammon by Paul Magriel and a great selection of related books, art and collectibles available now at

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When I first read Magriel, about 15 years ago, I was very weak, and it transformed my game.

Paul Magriel – Wikipedia

Yet this pointing out what you can see for yourself is the most valuable service a teacher of backgammon can perform for you.

The book is also valuable as a beautifully organized collection of simple problems. His younger half-brother is the sarangi player and teacher Backgammob Magriel.

Patty rated it really liked it Jun 25, Backgammon carefully explains the game’s basic concepts, ideas, and strategic principles. He had a unique ability to cut the important features of a position and write about it in terms that anyone could understand.

It has passed the test of time as an introductory text, having been commonly referred to as ‘The Bible’ of backgammon. The first time I read the book, I didn’t get much out of it. Jan 11, Richard Wagner rated it it was amazing.

Backgammon by Paul Magriel

There is no Internationally recognized system by which rankings are determined. After an introductory section in which he gives examples of the four most common types of game running game, holding game, attacking game and priming game and some basic doubling cube strategy and maths, Magriel goes on to tackle most of the fundamental points of chequer play. The book is layed out in a format that explains each phase of the game in logical order.


Writers of books that need to explain stuff to the reader should learn from Backgammon on how to do it, regardless of field. At the time, Magriel was one of the top minds in the game — and a great writer. Brad rated it really liked it Sep 23, It was the pilot series that led to the World Series of Backgammon and showcased Magriel’s oratory skills.

Control of the Outside The main criticism of the book must be that it is weak on doubling strategy. Fred Beringer rated it liked it Jul 05, The Hendon Mob website.

Mind Sports Worldwidemsoworld. THE classic book on Backgammon. You can learn a lot if you roll out the positions and think about what Magriel got right and wrong. Little outdated today, that’s why I didn’t give 5 stars. I always recommend reading Magriel to anyone trying to improve.

I recommend this highly to backgamon beginning and intermediate player. To ask other readers questions about Backgammonplease sign up. Playing with software is a hard way to begin learning, I always felt like I needed more strategic guidelines.

Backgammon analysts were flying without a net. Dec 11, Nick Blasier added it. Middle Game Strategy Back in the 70’s, there were no computers.

Paul Magriel

Jul 09, Matija rated it really liked it Shelves: I’ve read it once, but need to read it over again! Mgariel, in his clear-minded way, Magriel takes apart the position and focuses on its fundamental aspects.

It wouldn’t hurt advanced players to read this too. Magriel in the World Series of Poker. That being said, I would not look to Backgammon to bridge the gap between intermediate and expert play. Backgammon by Paul Magriel. It was the only truly analytic book about backgammon since Jacoby’s and Crawford’s The Backgammon Book and rendered all backgammon texts preceding it, and even some subsequent ones, obsolete as introductory texts. And then there are the bots. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.


Each problem illustrates a point, clearly and unambiguously.

Computer rollouts are now considered highly reliable for most types of positions. Very good basic book about backgammon.


The disadvantages are that some important details of advanced topics e. The columns are presented here in the same order as they appeared in the New York Times.

Also, this book was written way before nackgammon was good backgammon software, in the seventies, and it is likely that some corrections would have to be made for example, what are the best openings and responses to the opening rolls from what we have since learned from the bots. There is one short chapter dedicated to doubling cube strategy, which barely tackles the subject at all. That’s not to say you can’t learn from the columns where Magriel was wrong. Not merely a collection of problems, but in fact a textbook that presents a logically structured sequence of concepts, each supported by many illustrative examples.

As Magriel himself says, errors in handling the doubling cube cannot be compensated even with perfect checker play. Magriel first came to prominence on the backgammon circuit when he won the World Backgammon Championship in Although Magriel discusses theories so advanced only a few players in the world are aware of them, this book is neither technical nor abstruse.