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WPC 2008 Commentary: Round 1
Go to: Before the Tournament, Round 1, Round 2, Round 3, Round 4, Round 5, Round 6, Round 7, Round 8, Round 9, Round 10, Round 11, Round 12, Round 13, Round 14, Round 15, Round 16, Round 17, Round 18, Round 19, Round 20, Round 21, Round 22, Round 23.
Pat Sanchez, a local Dallas player, showed up this morning with her game equipment under her arm. She isn't playing, but she heard that we might need some equipment for the far-travelling players to use. How nice! Her board ended up at table 2 where Nigel Richards (MYS) played Stuart Goldman (USA). Her clock ended up at another table entirely!
We have three top-notch directors here: Wilma Vialle, from Australia, and Mary Rhoades/Bryan Pepper from the Dallas area. Thus, there is one director for every 16 players. The players feel the love because director calls are answered by the time the player's hand goes past his/her shoulder.
The first challenge on round 1 was between Mark Kenas (USA) and Victor Ikawa (BHR). Victor's arm shot up and Mark explained the laptops. I suggested Victor turn his tiles face down before Mark paraded by them and they went up to look up DISJECTS. It is good! As I see their board, Mark opened with CLOVE, Victor responded with TORANAS/CLOVER, ad then the third play was Mark's bingo challenged bingo.
Wide-eyed, Bryan Pepper comes over and writes: ANOVULAR at table 11 on my sheet of paper.
Lucky Tim Adamson (USA) and Kunihiko Kuroda (JPN), they are stationed at table 1 this round, and are being annotated live by Dee Segrest and Kate Watson. I think Stuart Goldman (USA) vs. Nigel Richards (MYS) was the game supposed to be played there, but the stairs up to the stage are a bit much for Stu. Nigel said table 2 was "fine by me," so there they sit.
As Tim and Kunihiko start their game, I'm reminded that this is not a School SCRABBLE event. Their first play: JEW.
First game to finish this round is between Nigel Richards (MYS) and Stuart Goldman (USA), 501-439, Nigel's win. Got nothing to say as they obediently had their tiles in 5x5 corners by the time I got there.
Michael Early (USA) vs. Phil Robertshaw (Eng). I see UNIONISED (which Mike played through IO!), TEAcHES, ORDINEE, HORNITOS, and LING?AS. I'm told the end score for 424-420 in Phil's favor, but Mike realizes they did the "American" ending. At this event, leftover tiles are subtracted from one side and added to the other (and not doubled on just one side). They retrieved the slip and corrected the minor math issue. I see that game came down to Mike's end rack: OFV. Ouch.
Dave Wiegand (USA) vs. Michael Quao (GHA). I see that Michael has ACHIOTE for 72 off the bat and then played TOAZED for 54. He later got down GUITARS for 70 and even bingoed out with ARTERIES for 64, but Dave ended up ekeing out a 396-393 win. I see a couple of plays Dave challenged off, one was UPGEARS*. I see Dave's SATARAS for 72 and TROUNCED for 74.
Marty Gabriel (USA) vs. Donna MacDonald (AUS). They are at a bright green Mattel board and I hear Marty say, "That is a British-only word, I'm so happy I got to play it." The play is STANiEL, which drew a challenge from Donna. I see her WEEPiEST from the W, which she says sums up how she felt about the game that she lost, 327-420.
As I approached Travis Chaney (USA) vs. Trevor Halsall (AUS), I hear Travis say, "I used up all my luck yesterday." Trevo said, "I certainly got lucky tiles there." They shook hands and began to talk about the game. It was a 485-378 win for Trevor. He said, "I took six and one-half minutes on this play," as he gestured at the board. I asked which play and he said, "I'm not going to tell you nor my rack as I found nothing and I'm sure I missed something." Travis got down ENATION for 67 and Trevor played FOOTAGES for 76.
Anthony Ikolo (NGA) vs. Geoff Thevenot (USA). The last few racks are scattered around the board and Anthony points at TIE/QI, which he says won the game for Geoff, 436-417. This game had a pretty start. Anthony opened with GREEK and Geoff responded with ENIGMATA through that G for 62. Anthony then played AvAILING through the N for 62. Excting stuff !
Nawapadol Sayavesa (THA) vs. Sam Dick-Onuoha (USA). The Thai had a 441-407 win. Some pretty plays on this board. Sam played GNATH, and Nawa extended it to GNATHITE to the triple. The aforementioned ANOVULAR came from the A and was played by Sam.
Albert Hahn (CAN) approached in his long shorts (which still show his knees, he is that tall), bent down and whispered to me, "Nothing interesting happened in my last game, other than Peter Armstrong (USA) beating my pants off."
At the Bob Jackman (AUS) vs. Jim Kramer (USA) board, Jim played the lovely gRAILES for 92, which drew a challenge from Bob. Bob then went back to his rack and saw MILEAgES for a 140-point triple-triple! Wow! I see JIm's UNHINGE for 78, but he still lost the game.
Steve Polatnick (USA) is weilding a giant, hardcover copy of Bob's Bible!
As this round wrapped up, we made an alarming discovery. One of the two adjudication laptops had the wrong dictionary loaded. Yikes! We are encouraged because we don't think any misadjudications were made as a result, but it was an unpleasant thing to see. John O'Laughlin (USA) was on it instantly and the proper dictionary was loaded.
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