‘One’ could be theloneliest number

May 27, 2003 2:55 AM

Let’s look at a tale of two tickets. They are both five spots, and each one has all five numbers circled to make five kings (1-1-1-1-1).

On the first ticket, we’ll play a dollar five spot and 10 deuces for 50-cents per way. On the second ticket, we’ll play a dollar five spot and five ones for a dollar per way. Each ticket costs \$6. The five spot pays \$750 for 5/5, \$10 for 4/5 and \$1 for 3/5. Assuming a standard pay out of \$3 for a dollar one spot and \$6 for a 50-cent deuce, the comparison of the two way tickets looks like this:

It is easy to see that the payouts on the deuce way ticket are equal or superior in all cases except for the 1 out of 5. But that’s not the end of the story! Just how important is that little \$3 payout for 1 out of five? Well, if you have a \$100 bankroll and you play the deuce way ticket, your mathematical expectation is 58.69 games played before you go broke.

Playing the ticket with the five one spots gives you a mathematical expectation of 64.04 games played before you go broke! This gives you on the average about 5.35 more games to play to try to hit your five spot. A 10 percent extra edge is nothing to sneeze at in the world of gaming!

Quite a few keno writers will look at you like you have a few loose screws if you try to play a five spot and five ones. Yet they will show you the deuce way ticket all day long and insist that it is a better ticket. Now you know better, so don’t be ashamed to play your one spots!

Ah, well, that’s the good news. Keno Lil doesn’t recommend (in general) the playing strategy of playing "for playbacks" because it simply eats up your bankroll too fast! So on a scale of one to five spikes, with five being the highest, I rate these systems about:

(Sorry.)

Well, that’s it for now. Good luck! I’ll see you in line!