More 4-way-9s
for the lounge

Dec 5, 2006 1:19 AM

The last few weeks we’ve discussed 4-way-9s, and I want to revisit the subject this week. As you recall, I published a rather complete list of 4-way-9s, and the following tickets and their attendant odds were part of the list:  

Ticket  9/9 8/9  7/9
4-3-3-2-2 349,542 8,114.80 477.78
4-4-3-2-2 349,094 8,032.88 466.30
4-3-3-3-2 345,921 7,817.01 446.36
4-4-3-3-2 345,729 7,793.25 445.97

These tickets are curiosities, and if not twins are certainly siblings or at least cousins. They range from 14 to 16 spots, and they all consist of groups of fours, threes, and twos. As 4-way-9s, they are all fine tickets to play, among the best. Although the 4-3-3-3-2 belongs here among its relatives, we’ll ignore it this week, as it is an analogue, a variation, of the famous 6-3-3-3 4-way-9 (the field of six is merely split into a 4-2) that we have previously discussed at length.

The remaining three tickets consist of 14, 15, and 16 spots respectfully. All of them consist of groups of 4, 3, and 2. As you recall, a field ticket is a ticket that has one group of a particular size that combines with other groups to make ways. These are all field tickets. The 14-spot has a field of 4, the 15-spot has a field of 3, and the 16-spot has a field of 2.

We note, once again, that as we move from 14 to 15 to 16-spots, the frequency of wins becomes increasingly more favorable to the player. In other words, the more spots the better. This should not be surprising, as the chances of hitting 9 out of 16 are one in 172,715 while the chances of hitting 9 out of 14 are one in 2,703,042, about 15 times as hard.

On all three of these tickets, the field is a component of all 4-way-9s, and it is worth noting that a field of two is much easier to hit solid than a field of three or four. All these tickets are a variety of what I call "criss-cross" tickets, because two different size groups combine, along with the field group, to make a nine in a criss-cross manner. In this respect they all share a simple elegance.

I would not hesitate to play any of these tickets, and my choice of tickets in any case would be based upon the decision to play some additional ways. For instance, the 14-spot has a 4-way-5, while the 16-spot has a 2-way-5. If I wanted to play some fives, I might go with the 14-spot.

But tonight I just want to play the nines, so I’ll play the 16-spot. I am aware that the ticket has two straight eights on it, the 4-4 and the 3-3-2. Danger! Danger! If I play only the nines, it is possible to hit a solid eight without winning a dime, and I cannot contemplate that possibility! I must cover the eights for insurance.

Well, that’s it for now. Good luck! I’ll see you in line! email: [email protected]