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WPC 2008 Commentary: Round 5
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.
I've heard that Bob Jackman (AUS) has donated one of his English Language Word Builder books as a prize for the awards ceremony. When asked about what makes it special, John Chew says, "It separates words we know from SCRABBLE words and makes it easier to study SCRABBLE words." Turning to one page at random, I see a subheading entitled, "Other Probable Less Familiar Non-Hook Nines." Now, I'm sure some lucky person here will make quick work with this guide!
I ran into Travis Chaney (USA) over lunch. He is positively morose. After winning every game yesterday, where he took on players all over the world at a bar table, he is 0-4 here so far. He says, "It is because it really matters to me that I do well. That is why I take it so hard." I want to wish an afternoon of wins on him, but sense that even my godlike complex can't make this happen.
Phil Robertshaw (Eng) is playing David Eldar (AUS) this round. I am not the only person who is finding their game interesting. A photographer from Fox 4 (which means channel 4 for you in the Dallas area) spent much of this round focussed on that game and the one next to it. At the end of the game, David confessed that he played horribly. Phil said, "Oh yes, he played horribly and beat me by 150...." I see DEUTZIaS for 104, ZOONITE for 74, SALTATE for 71, and TRIACiD. Not pushing anyone for who played what, because the news guy has a camera inches from David's face now, so I move on. David has an interesting scoresheet. It is quite small, like 1/6th the size of standard 8.5 x 11 piece of paper. He tapes it to the tablecloth and underneath it keeps another even smaller piece of paper with this tracking/note sheet. This second sheet is mostly black with the letters left white. As he tracks, he uses a black magic marker to cross off the letters used, making them disappear into the black background. Kinda groovy. For such a minimalist, however, this does require him to have two pens!
Howard Warner (NZL) vs. Tim Adamson (USA). I see that Tim replied to Howard's opening wtih BOHRIUMs through the O. Other fun plays: WAKANEs, OLEANDER, SCIMITAR, and SEPTARIA. Tim's win, 481-462. If all it takes is carrot cake to ger results like this for Tim, I daresay he'll eat it every night prior to major tournaments.
I see James Sekyi (GHA) and Femi Awowade (Eng) return from the challenge machine. I know not what happened up there, but I saw James turn on his own timer as he sank down into his seat, his tiles still face down in front of him. In North America we normally wait to turn the clock back on after the tiles are back on the rack. So, Femi reminds me of a new word I want to add to the "RURU is my favorite word" list: IWI! He played FRIG/IWI/AG! Wonderful! On their board, I see WANION?, DOWLING, AD?LATE, and PLONGD (this is not a typo).
Amnuay Ploysangngam (THA) is playing Michael Quao (GHA) this round. I see PASTORED, INCOMEs, and BROwNIES on their board. Amnuay has brought less players with him this year than in past years. Nawapadol Sayavesa (THA) is the only other Thai player at this event. However, he does have his normal coterie of beautiful Thai women. One of them is Jeannette, his neice. She is full Thai in appearance but 100% American in speech. When Amnuay comes to the States, she usually visits him and takes in the event. It is nice to see her! Earlier today, Amnuay met up with Chris Cree (USA) in the lobby. Amnuay initiated a big bear hug with Chris, which threw me for a loop. He admitted that in Thailand men hug only women, but he knows that Chris is an affectionate guy, so he demonstrated bilingual greeting techniques! He then said, "What do I owe you Chris?" Chris said $540. So, Amnuay pulled out his big ol' wallet and handed Chris the money in $100 bills.
Wilma comes up to me and bends in and says, "Of the six women here, five are from Australia!" I am thinking about this when two of them walk up to the machine to challenge LUBED.
Peter Armstrong (USA) vs. Dave Wiegand (USA). The game is nearing its end, Dave plays YUFT, Peter holds, but accepts it because he can play his bingo off it. Turns out that YUFT is good! Peter is proud of his opening respone to Dave: ENOMITY from the E. Dave says, "You had TRINOMY." i see some fun words on their board: ICTERUS, DEfROST, GLAIRED, VOICERS. Dave's win, 488-398.
Nawapadol Sayavesa (THA) and Albert Hahn (CAN) take a trip to the challenge machine. Nawa has just played sORDINE/JIRGAs and I'm not sure which was challenged, but they stay on the board. I also see MAISTRE on the board.
The person to win the "cool cucumber" award this round is Theresa Camilleri (MLT). Just as she was drawing tiles, the Fox 4 guy thunked the camera lense down (attached to a 200-lb camera) on her table centimeters from her tiles. She just kept on moving on, picking them up and putting them on her rack. She told me afterwards that she paused enough so that the camera could see her rack as it was quite obvious that it was the reason the camera was there!
I approach Amit Chakrabarti (USA) who says, "I drw the bag and got four bingos. Well, my opponent got two, so we both did well!" I see Amit's WARSTLeR for 83, AMNIOTE for 83, CHAgRIN for 81, and AGRISED for 92. Steve Polatnick (USA) played SPINAGE for 67 and LACIEST for 81. Amit's win, 529-420.
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