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Joel Wapnick


[photo of Wapnick] Joel Wapnick, a 53-year-old music professor at McGill University, is the reigning Canadian Champion. He has played at every WSC, and his best finish was 2nd place in 1993. One month before this event, he led his Montréal team to victory over Toronto in an annual intercity match, going undefeated against the top 13 players from Toronto. Wapnick's seminal work on SCRABBLE® play has recently been revised and reprinted in CD-ROM format.


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[07-001] [11-004] [11-005] [16-001] [17-002] [17-003] [24-005] [24-013] [24-012] [24-013] [25-001] [25-013] [25-012] [25-013] [25-017] [25-018] [25-021] [25-024]

Round 1. Wapnick plays Bob Lipton of Vero Beach, FL. Both are WSC and longtime tournament veterans, but they did not play each other in 1997.
Wapnick beat Lipton 521-367, and is now in 10th place, 1-0 +154.
Round 2. Another big win, this time over reigning World Champion Joel Sherman, 477-353, moves Joel Wapnick up to 3rd place overall (behind Andrew Fisher and A Ganesh), 2-0 +278.
Round 3. Wapnick loses his first game, 395-442 to Lester Schonbrun (U.S.). He drops back down to 16th place, 2-1 +231.
Round 4. Wapnick defeats American John Luebkemann 531-387 and climbs to 9th place, 3-1 +375. Wapnick bingoed CORBIES WOULDEST WANTONER to Luebkemann's SECRETING RONTGENS, and also played FIXES for 67 points.
Round 5. Wapnick beats Roger Blom of Australia 393-341 and is now in 5th place, 4-1 +427 behind undefeated Richards, Credo and Gipson and 4-1 fellow Montréaler Boys.
Round 6. Wapnick beats American Lisa Odom 427-387 and moves up to third place behind Richards and Boys, 5-1 +467.
Round 7. Wapnick lost to Mark Nyman (UK) 304-434, and dropped to 11th, with a record of 5-2 +337.
Round 8. Wapnick lost to Jakkrit Klaphajone (TH) 304-384. Wapnick is now #22, with a record of 5-3 +257.
Round 9. Wapnick won against Sayeed Jimoh (NI) 478-368. Wapnick is now #13, with a record of 6-3 +367.
Round 10. Wapnick won against Ronald Credo (PH) 381-321. Wapnick is now #9, with a record of 7-3 +427.
Round 11. Wapnick won against Mark Nyman (UK) 423-333. Wapnick is now #8, with a record of 8-3 +517.
Round 12. Wapnick won against Lester Schonbrun (US) 393-337. Wapnick is now #6, with a record of 9-3 +573.
Round 13. Wapnick won against Nigel Richards (NZ) 404-397. Wapnick is now #3, with a record of 10-3 +580.
Round 14. Wapnick won against Joel Sherman (US) 456-357. Wapnick is now #1, with a record of 11-3 +679.
Round 15. Wapnick won against David Boys (CA) 479-412. Wapnick is now #1, with a record of 12-3 +746. Each player reported three bingoes and an odd word: Wapnick ARBOREtA, SUMMoNER, SLEAVING, MAFFIA; Boys ENDOSTEA, NEWSIEST, ANTIHERO, PIOYE#.
Round 16. Wapnick lost to John Luebkemann (US) 359-425. Wapnick is now #2, with a record of 12-4 +680.
Round 17. Wapnick plays John Luebkemann (US) for a third time, and wins 446-386. Wapnick is now #2, with a record of 13-4 +740.
Round 18. Wapnick plays Mark Nyman (UK) for a third time (!), and loses 367-421. Wapnick is now #3, with a record of 13-5 +686. Michael Vnuk reports that at one point Wapnick had RADIALS unplayable on his rack but found rISALDAR# to catch up to 259-282. Mohan Chunkath says that a risaldar is a type of cavalryman.
Round 19. Wapnick won against Joel Sherman (US) 444-391. Wapnick is now #3, with a record of 14-5 +739.
Jane Williams writes:
Joel Wapnick beat Sherman at table 2-Sherman played GLOM, then JW played EGLOMISE for a triple triple! 1:51 on JW clock, JS clock -1:59.

Have shot of board and a great shot of JW SMILING.


Round 20. Wapnick won against Brian Cappelletto (US) 474-379. Wapnick is now #2, with a record of 15-5 +834. Here's the game.
At Table 1, Joel Wapnick (Canada) has won 
over Brian Cappelletto (United States):

Annotated game:

BC: AGOIKT?    8G   KO       12   12
JW: BONNYP?    9F   BONY     23   23
BC: AGITOR?    10I  ARGOTIc  66   78
JW: PN?LOTX    11K  OX       33   56
BC: DODIIYO    12I  DIDY     49  127
JW: PN?LTZP    exch PLTPZ     0   56
BC: IOOVAET    10B  VITAE    24  151
JW: N?TEEEA    06   ANTECEdE 68  124
BC: OOTREAI    N2   OORIE    19  169
JW: AEEUSZT    M3   ZEA      50  174
BC: TAPPTCW    1L   WATT     39  208
JW: EUSTFMS    14   FUMETS   45  219
BC: PPCSUNR    4I   CUPPER   24  232
JW: SAEAILS    15G  ALIASES  88  307
BC: SNREIFA    D6   FAINTERS 74  306
JW: OCHDGLR    8A   LOGIC    24  331
BC: MBQRWJN    11C  NEW      24  330
JW: HDRRULI    M7   HURT     12  343
BC: QRJMBEH    J3   JUBE     15  345
JW: DRLIING    C1   RIDGLING 82  425
BC: HMRQLEV    2B   QI       22  367
JW: UADNEIO    K3   OPINED   35  460
BC: HMRLEV     13A  HEMS     18  385
JW: UA         4C   GAU       8  468
JW:                +VRL      +6  474
BC:                -VRL      -6  379

Round 21. Wapnick won against Femi Awowade (NI) 457-440. Wapnick is now #2, with a record of 16-5 +851. Wapnick and Nyman are now two games ahead of the rest of the field.
Round 22. Wapnick won against Andrew Fisher (UK) 425-291. At 17-5 +985, Wapnick is now in first place, and will stay there for the rest of the tournament.
Round 23. Wapnick lost to David Boys (CA) 370-402. Wapnick is still #1, with a record of 17-6 +953. Joel is fairly safe, but hasn't clinched a spot yet. Winning the next game would be a good idea, or at least not losing it by much. Here's this round's game in detail:
1  JW AODJLNR    8G  JOR      20  20 
   DB UCUCEEN    7H  KUE      17  17
2  JW ADLN-HRS   6J  HARL     28  48
   DB CENU-FIE   5H  FICE     30  47
3  JW DNS-AONN   9F  DONNA    29  77
   DB UEN-EATE   4D  TENUE    18  65
4  JW NS-ILRY?   3H  NItRYLS  76 153
   DB AE-GPIXA  10J  XI       50 115
5  JW HQVIDEA   11G  HIVED    40 193
   DB PEAAG-NA  12A  APANAGE  77 192
6  JW QA-AFOOL   5A  ALOOF    28 221
   DB LGIEIUI   13A  LIEU     20 212
7  JW QA-POZRS  13G  POZ      38 259
   DB GII-TDEB   A4  BAITED   36 248
8  JW QARS-MRV       exch QMRV
   DB IG-IEOST   H1  GONEF    27 275
9  JW ARS-GOOY   F2  YON      14 273
   DB IIEST-RI  A12  ALIT     12 287   
10 JW ARSGO-DS  B10  SAPID    26 299
   DB IESRI-AE   B2  RIEL     12 299
11 JW RSGO-REW   L1  WRY      13 312
   DB AIES-QTW   1A  QAT      41 340
12 JW RSGOE-MM   1J  MOWERS   33 345
   DB WIES-ATE    ?  RESEWS   32 372
13 JW GM-UCTV?  H13  OM        4 349
   DB ATI-NB    14D  NIB      14 386 
14 JW GUCTV?    15H  sCUT     27 376
   DB TA         6E  TA       10 396
15 JW VG                      -6 370
   DB                         +6 402

Round 24. Wapnick beats Tiekert (US) 475-360, ends with a record of 18-6 +1068. Joel Wapnick returns to the WSC finals, to face either Boys or Nyman, both formidable opponents. A few minutes later, final results are in from table #2: Wapnick will face Mark Nyman (U.K.) in a rematch of the 1993 WSC. Here is this round's Table #1 game:
Table 1:  Joel Wapnick (Canada) v Ron Tiekert (United States)


1  JW  EIBLINQ  8G  QI         22    22
   RT  EUNYSOO  I5  YOUSE      22    22
2  JW  EBLNS ?Z 5D  BENZOyLS  134   156 
   RT  ON JELGR 4C  JO         26    48
3  JW  ECDLRR?  H1  CREDO      27   183
   RT  GENLR GN E3  GREN       15    63
4  JW  LR? IREH     RELISHER   challenged
   RT  GNLE LFE KI  FLEGS      10    73
5  JW  LR? IREH 1K  FLIER      27   210
   RT  LEN DATI N1  ENTAILED   70   143 
6  JW  HR? SAWY M7  WASHErY    98   308
   RT  MPOTHIS  O7  MOTH       47   190
7  JW  EDFGNRT  L11 DEFT       30   388
   RT  SIP ETAI 8G  QIS        12   200
8  JW  GNR TRIK H8  IRKING     15   353
   RT  PATSIE W F9  TAWPIES    70   272
9  JW  RT AONNV 15F SOVRAN     27   380
   RT  EXIAOIA  L3  XI         33   305
10 JW  NT EOUBP E10 POUT       32   412
   RT  EOAAI UO K8  EUOI       14   319
11 JW  ENB AAEO G3  NAZE       20   432  
   RT  OAA VUTC J11 VACUA      19   338
12 JW  AEOB DAM D11 BO         26   458
   RT  ATO IE   6B  EOAN       11   349
13 JW  AADEM    O1  REAM       20   478
   RT  TI       7B  TI          8   359
14 JW  AD                      -3   475
   RT                          +3   360

The Finals

Joel Wapnick went on to win the finals 3 games to 1. For the details, see Game 1, Game 2, Game 3 and Game 4.

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