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Atlanta Backgammon Association


Unified Backgammon
Tournament Clock Rules

ABA amended - December 2003 Edition

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Unified Backgammon
Tournament Clock Rules


1.0 CLOCK ISSUANCE

1.1 On Director's own initiative or at the request of any participant in the tournament, Director may require both players to use clocks. Supplies permitting, Director may announce and/or post on the draw sheet for any round, "CLOCKS REQUIRED," or "CLOCKS ALLOWED" (on request of either player). Clocks shall be introduced only at the start of a new game.

2.0 PRELIMINARIES

2.1 Clocks shall be set based on match length. When using a STANDARD CLOCK, Director shall place six minutes per point (less three minutes per point already scored by either player) on the clocks of both players. When using a BRONSTEIN CLOCK, Director shall place two minutes per point (less one minute per point already scored by either player) in conjunction with a 12-second-per-move deductible on the clocks of both players. Players shall confirm the proper setting of the clocks.

3.0 THE PLAY

3.1 EQUIPMENT. One pair of dice, shared by both players, and two dice cups, one for each player.

3.2 DICE MIX. Either player may demand a mixing of dice prior to the start of any game. Four predetermined dice (including the two already in play) are mixed with each player picking one die.

3.3 OPENING ROLL. At the start of each game, each player rolls one die. The player rolling the lower die starts the opponent's clock. Then the player with the higher die moves.

3.4 COMPLETING A PLAY. Players signal the end of their turn by hitting the clock with the same hand used in moving, leaving the dice in place on the board. The turn then passes to the opponent. No player may touch the dice during the opponent's turn. A player who has no legal checker moves (e.g.: closed out on the bar) is not required to roll the dice but still must continue hiting the clock to signify completion of turn.

3.5 CUBE. After doubling or redoubling, player starts the opponent's clock. After accepting the cube, player says "take" and starts the opponent's clock. To reject the double, player says "pass," stops both clocks, and resets the board.

3.6 CONCEDING OR CLAIMING POINTS IN A GAME. Players may concede or claim a plain game, gammon or backgammon on their turn prior to rolling the dice by stopping both clocks and stating the offer. To accept an offer, opponent says "accept" and resets the board for a new game. To reject an offer, opponent says "reject" and summons Director to adjudicate. The director requires the opponent to accept the offer if no outcome of the game that is more favorable to the player can occur, otherwise deems the offer invalid and restarts the clock. Without a concession or claim, each game shall be rolled to completion if not ended by a pass. After bearing off the last checker, player stops both clocks and resets the board.

4.0 STOPPING THE CLOCK

4.1 Player stops both clocks (a) to start a new game, (b) to offer a concession or claim, (c) to announce an intention to take an authorized break between games in the match, (d) to retrieve fallen dice, (e) to contest an opponent's action, or (f) to summon Director.

5.0 CLOCK PENALTIES

5.1 TIME EXPIRATION. When a player's time expires, Director shall be summoned. If using BRONSTEIN CLOCKS, a player whose time expires loses the match. If using STANDARD CLOCKS, Director shall add two penalty points to the opponent's score for a player's first offense and one penalty point for each repeat offense, then reset the expired clock to five minutes and direct play to resume. Penalty points may end the match immediately. In games whose outcome will always end the match (e.g. double match-point), one grace period shall be given: when a player's time first expires, Director shall reset the expired clock to five minutes without awarding penalty points.

5.2 FROZEN CUBE. If penalty points bring a player¹s score to within one point of winning the match, neither opponent may turn the doubling cube for the remainder of that game or during the next.


Change Summary (December 2003 Edition):
2.1 Setting clocks - added provision for use of Bronstein clocks; reworded for clarity and brevity; eliminated table
3.6 Conceding or claiming - added provision for claiming a win
5.1 Time expiration - added provisions for Bronstein clocks and for Standard clock penalties at DMP
5.2 Frozen cube - reworded for clarity and brevity
Minor rewording of rules 1.1, 3.1, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, and 4.1

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