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SA Championship!

We have a new State Champion!  Esther Perrins has won the South Australia State Championship.

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The tournament was held in Adelaide over the Adelaide Cup weekend.  As usual it was 16 games over two days.  40 players were taking part.  Among them was Carmel Dodd who was acknowledged for crossing 4000 tournament games played in Australia – an amazing achievement.  The format of the tournament is Open with a prize for the top player rated in the bottom half of the field (denoted on the pairings sheet with a ~ so the prize is naturally called top-of-the-tildes.)

It was a turbulent Day 1.  There were 9 games played and at the end of the day there were 4 players on 7 wins: Daniel Piechnick, Michael Cameron, Tony Miller, Antonios Syrigos.  The tournament was wide open for anyone to make a deep run.

In game 12, the two tournaments leaders: Daniel and Esther were meeting for the second time (Esther had won their first clash on day 1.)  Esther would go on to win again and so three players were tied on 9 wins: Daniel, Esther, Oliver Jenner-O’Shea.  In the final four games Daniel and Esther raced to the finish with Daniel carrying the bigger margin.  Esther got a game ahead and then won in the last rounds to take the tournament two games ahead of Daniel in second place.

Congrats again to Esther!
We’ll hopefully see lots of people next year at the SA Championship 2018.

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Hoping for an I

This is a quick post that was sparked by a discussion we had at the the last Adelaide Pub Scrabble club meeting.

It’s a feeling we all know: you have a rack that makes a beautiful 8 letter word on your opening rack and your opponent is going first.  You just need them to play the right floater so you can lay down your bonus.

My rack was NOTATON so I just needed my friendly opponent to give me an I for NOTATION (or an M for MONTANTO which I did not spot.)  Opponent did not oblige and I was left to play TOON.

After the game we were musing as to whether you’d rather be in the position of hoping for an I or hoping for an E.  There are more Es in the bag but opponent may be more likely to keep the E on their rack.

So, here’s the situation: You’re going second and really feel like a bonus to boost your confidence.  Which of the following racks do you most want?

ELOJSUZ
EEISQUZ
BCEHKOX
AEFINYZ
CIMORSX
AERSWYZ
AACHPOZ
ACGHIJK
AEFIMNZ
BEIMOUZ
AACCHOZ
EMOSYYZ
AEIIMXZ
DGHINUZ
AAEMPXZ
ACJKMPU
EEHINUZ
CHIIMOZ
HKOOVYZ
ADDIQSZ
EHILMQU
EEHIMQU
ACHIJKP
GLLOOYY
AKOONUZ
ABCEIKW

A Tricky Pre-Endgame Puzzle

What would you do here?

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A pre-endgame against Barry Harridge from the Border Challenge recently that I’ve been thinking about a lot. Scores are level. 3 tiles in the bag.

The candidate moves seem to be:
-VI(R)L or VERD or DERV
-(A)V(I)ZE or with a D
-(HA)ZE or with a D or an L
-VEL(E) on the E of TESTY

I’m not sure what I’m supposed to be considering here to decide. The unseen J making HAJ or playing onto a triple is the concern.

Border Challenge

SA v Vic Border Challenge Wrap-Up, Results and Ratings

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This year’s SA v Vic Border Challenge saw SA field its largest team ever (26) to battle a pretty big team from Victoria (22). SA’s 7 heavy-hitters all performed well, finishing in the overall top 8. After an even start, SA steadily built up a lead between rounds 3 until they were unbeatable at the end of round 9 (of 10).

This triggered ‘Team Gibsonization’ to help even out the intra-team count for some of the lower-ranked players and also provide a sensible shootout for the individual prizes. Michael Cameron and Jane Taylor were victorious over Trevor Tao and myself, to claim 1st and 2nd respectively. Angie Pearse flew the flag for Victoria to finish 5th. The final team tally was SA 128 – Vic 92, SA’s sixth consecutive win!

As is often the case with this event, the highlight is a breakout performance by an up-and-comer. This year’s standout was SA’s Wendi Symes, who from a rating of 722 (making her BC debut) strung together 7 wins, including upsets over the Victorian team’s top 2 rated players (Geoff W & Norma). Honorable mentions to stalwart Louisa Atsas who caused a lot of upsets on day 1, but slipped just outside the top 3 in the 2nd rating band and to Rachel Telfer who also played well above her rating on BC debut.

As always, the competition was fierce but friendly with new friendships and rivalries formed across the border. A big thanks to Victoria for organising this year’s event, particularly to Carol Johnsen and Norma Fisher. Also, thanks to Paula and her family for all of their work coordinating Team SA.

Prize-winners:
Overall:
1st Michael Cameron
2nd Jane Taylor
3rd Trevor Tao
HG Michael Cameron 559
HW Norma Fisher INFLUXES 194

2nd Rating Band:
1st Wendi Symes
2nd Lyndee Hill
3rd Neal Whibley
HG Glenys Dettmann 523
HW Marilyn Evans JAVELINS 104