Full Name: Marv Porten
Date of birth: 1946
Birth Place: Pennsylvania
Current City of Residence: San Francisco
Marital Status: Married
Occupation: Retired lawyer
How I started playing Backgammon: Taught by friends in the 1970s
Current Skill level: Intermediate / Advanced
Number of years playing Backgammon live: Off and on since 1978.
Favorite Tournament Venue: Any well-lit, well-ventilated, spacious room
– 2006 Las Vegas Open, 1st place, Intermediate
– 2012 U.S. Open, first place, Intermediate
Other important finishes:
– 1980 Black & White Scotch San Francisco Classic, 1st place, Intermediate consolation
– 2008 Nevada State Tournament, first place, seniors event
– 2011 California State Championships, finalist, blitz event
Favorite Backgammon books:
– What Color Is The Wind? by Chris Bray
– Second Wind by Chris Bray
– Classic Backgammon Revisited by Jeremy Bagai
If I could change anything in the Backgammon world, I would…
There should be tournament backgammon boards that automatically sense and record every move, dice roll, and cube action, then print out a move list and analysis after the match ends.
1- For older, retired people, backgammon is excellent mental exercise (bridge, chess, and scrabble also). As one ages, one should not neglect regular mental and physical exercise.
2- For younger people, games like backgammon, poker, and bridge can be a colossal waste of time if over-indulged. The primary focus for people in their 20s and 30s should be getting an education, starting a career, and building personal and professional relationships – not games and gambling.
3- Anyone with the ability to do well in backgammon tournaments probably could be very successful in a profession or skilled technical job. If you’re still young, try to avoid potentially addictive games; there’s plenty of time for them when you’re older.