by The Babe
"The Babe" is a dedicated Tournament Blackjack veteran of 29 years. He was attracted to the game at the start of the 80’s and has undoubtedly participated in more major blackjack tournaments than anyone. He learned the game the hard way…….from his own mistakes, and has won his way to the televised tables of The Hilton Million Dollar II Tournament, the Ultimate Blackjack Tour on CBS, and the World Series of Blackjack on GSN. He still continues to compete, and has three major titles to his credit in the past three years.
Back in the December 2008 issue of the BJI, you were promised that we would deal with the splitting of Aces in a future column. Well, the future is now! There has been very little written about this subject in all of tournament literature, and, whatever has been written about aces in all the books on casino blackjack can be boiled down to two conclusions:
One is Always Split Aces.
Two is aimed at blackjack counters, and the conclusion is always split aces unless you have a huge negative count.
Regarding the second conclusion, that negative count occurs so seldom in a six-deck game that you might well play every day for a month and never once receive aces with a count negative enough to justify hitting instead of splitting. However, somewhat of an exception would be the situation of a pair of aces verses the dealer’s ace. In that case the negative requirement is not as great, but still substantial. Therefore, even for counters, if you always split aces, you will be very close to perfect playing strategy; which brings us back to conclusion number one, Always Split Aces.
So why in the world do we even want to ponder the aces split question? Because, we are...
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