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Jay's View

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In our house, when our boys were growing up they frequently had a few friends come join us for lunch or dinner on the weekends. It was also not uncommon for them to let us know that a couple more would be joining us if it was okay. We always said yes but we worried if there would be enough to put on the table, especially if Michael’s friend Brian was one of the late additions. Brian had the capacity for intake that would be the envy of any woodchipper. But it didn’t really matter to us because we were just happy to have our boys’ friends be with us in the house and we could always thaw something from the freezer. Bottom line is, two newcomers were never a problem in our house.


At Trudie’s Winnetka Backgammon Club, we treat newcomers the same way. There’s always room and plenty of fun at the board for first time players and that’s how we treated our two newest players, John Scott and Matt Joyce. Though John has played at the Pub Club, giving him a bit of previous tournament play and Matt is a first-timer for tournament play, I think they both expressed that they had a great time by the end of the evening. Hell, Matt brought cookies for his inaugural visit and John actually score his first master points after losing in the semi-finals of the Main bracket.  I hope they will both come play with us as often as possible.


So yes, John scored master points but it came as a result of his loss in a closely fought match to Anatoliy Katsnelson. In the end, with time running out in the evening, Anatoliy split first place prize money and master points with Takao Morioka. 


But another player who lost to Anatoliy was Denny Scully in his first round match. Denny however, then moved to the Consolation bracket where he fought off Vlad Eydelman and Neil Banoff on his way to the finals. That’s where he faced Amy Trudeau who defeated Kevin Berg and Liam O’Neill— first place winner two weeks ago— a strong opponent, no doubt. In the end, and following a well played match, Denny walked away with first place and some much needed master points.


Well, there’s always next week and that means that everyone— even me— will have a chance to score some points, all while having a great time playing backgammon. Until then, take a moment to review the Elite Eight end-of-the-year playoff competition below. Have a great weekend, everyone!



Elite Eight Playoff Standings June 7, 2023
Rank NAME Total Points
1 Morioka, Takao 8.86
2 Anderson, Craig 8.16
3 Trudeau, Amy 5.86
4 O'Neill, Liam 5.22
5 Eydelman, Vlad 4.88
6 Peters, Michael 4.82
7 Hanold, David


8 Nedelcu, Adrian



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