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WPC 2010 Commentary: Round 20
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Our last round before lunch and the hungry squirrels behind me in the kitchen are loudly snacking when they get a chance. John Chew is finishing addressing envelopes and signing checks for the NSC prizewinners, which he is doing when things slow down in this room.
Nathan Benedict (USA) in first place and doing well this morning, wins his fourth game in this session against Thavachai Thivavarnvongs (THA). I see sERIOUs and MERLINS on their board. They both dart out of the room, the first game done this round and I imagine they are going swimming or maybe for a nice, long nap.
A soft groan is followed by the almost imperceptible sound of someone slumping into a chair. Fidelis Olotu (Eng) has just taken Jean McArthur (USA) to the machine to look up cOInTER. It is acceptable. I see another fun play of FOVEOLAS. She wins, 553-308. I give her the thumbs up symbol because she is now up to 6 wins and she waves her hand and says, "it happens." I hope it means that sometimes the tiles go her way!
Bradley Robbins (USA) vs. Jim Kramer (USA). I look at Bradley to see on his face if he won or not and he says, "I didn't win, but it was close!" A 445-402 game. Bardley played BONiTaS and YIELDING from the Y down the triple for 95. Jim got down LAVATION and ISOETE/LAVATIONS.
As their game wraps up, Puneet Sharma (USA) says, "I had to try a desperation play, VACULINE*, but Travis called it off." He lets me know that BACULINE is good. Travis' SAVELOY and Puneet's DUsTIER/SAVELOYs to the triple. Other plays: RODEOINg, ARTISAN, and BURPEE. A 443-404 win for Travis.
Besides signs, this event has been run totally paper free. The group is small enough that the electronic wallchart is enough. While at the machine, I'm told that Ebikeme Adowei (NGA) played GROANIER* and his opponent Marty Gabriel (USA) held him for a long time, but accepted the play. Then Marty came down with WOODLIKE* to the E. This drew no challenge.
"I can't understand how he wins....I mean, he knows words for sure, but I know words, too. I just was never in it..." Bob Lipton (USA) explaining his loss to Pakorn Nemitrmansuk (THA) this round, 343-559. I see Pakorn's opening SANGRIA and Bob's reply of CAZ through the first A. And that was kind of the flow, Pakorn playing big and many and Bob limping a long. I will point out that Bob played LIPE, which could be seen as an early wedding present for Chris in Rome, NY.
Nick Ball (CAN) loses to Chris May (AUS) this round, 425-464. And this spread is the most that any game today has had occur. His spreads so far: tie, +7, +28. He's not even kidding! In his game with chris, I see GLITZY for 69 on the triple played by Chris and his HALIDES for 80, and CAtENAS for 75. Nick played tERRACES for 77 and a late INUSTION For 66, which brought him close, but no cigar on winning that gem.
Tapani Lindgren (USA) and Kunihiko Kuroda (JPN) are just concluding a recount, which gives the win to the player from Japan, 387-375. Tapani sadly lost two points in the recount. I see JOISTINg, TENOURS, and TORoIDAL on their board. Kunihike opened with AZIDO.
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