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December 5-8, 2003

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Back to 2003 Canadian SCRABBLE Championship Live Coverage

2003 Canadian SCRABBLE Championship Commentary: Round 17

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, Award Ceremony, Final Round 1, Final Round 2, Final Round 3, Final Round 4, After the Tournament.

Congratulations to Dean Saldanha (Richmond BC), who under CNSC pairing rules clinches a finals berth and is Gibsonized in order to give Evan Berofsky (Thornhill ON) and David Boys (Dorval QC) a chance to compete directly to see who challenges him tomorrow morning.

Libero Paolella (Toronto ON) played Dean Saldanha (Richmond BC) at Board 1 this round, and their annotated game is available for browsing.

Evan Berofsky (Thornhill ON) played Tony Leah (Ajax ON) at Board 2 this round, and their annotated game is available for browsing.

round 17

As we milled back into the playing room for this round, Peter Gross and a camera operator from CP24 (CityTV) was here. At one point, Peter asked John was the hightest scoring possible word was in SCRABBLE®. John gestured to his 10-year-old godson, Daniel West, and said, "tell the man the word, Daniel." So, Daniel did! This so charmed Peter that he set up a situation where he asked Daniel this question with the camera rolling with at a game in progress with Laura Desiato, the other runner. Sitting there in all her pigtailed sweetness, the reporter suddenly decided to work her into the shot. So, after he'd asked Daniel for the word, which is OXYPHENBUTAZONE for 1,778 points, Laura chimed in with "of course." It was so great! I hope they make the evening news!

Another film photographer is here from CTV, Craig Gibson.

At table 17, against Fern Lindzon (North York ON), Lou Cornelis (Ottawa ON) opened their game with FERNY for 30 points.

Former French consultant for the North York board of education, Diane Brown, was thrilled when at table 17 Lisa Kessler (Toronto ON) opened with VOILA and her opponent, Siri Tillekeratne (Calgary AB) replied with his own VOILA! Other words on their board were Lisa's VENTURED for 63, NONLIFE for 67, and STRIPPEd through the R for 78. Siri played AFREEETS for 82, but lost with 313-461.

At table 15, in a battle between Allan Simon (Calgary AB) and Glenn Dunlop (Brantford ON), Allan played JOKIEST for 119. He later explained to Diane Brown that he was nervous about playing it because it pluralized EARNEST, making EARNESTS, but he played it anyway. Glenn challenged and it was ruled acceptable. Glenn played FoLIOED to a triple for 93, but lost, 354-396.

In a game between David Boys (Dorval QC) and Jim Nanavati (Burlington ON), Diane kept a close eye, which is a good thing, because I missed the game. When I came up, Dave asked us to keep who won to ourselves for a while. We agreed. At some point in the game, Jim played NExUSES for 75 and then later got down LIQUORED for 77. After that play, he drew ABGILOT, which would have enabled him to have another bingo (OBLIGATE or maybe OBLIGATI or OBLIGATO), but maybe sensing the direction of the tile flow, David blocked the board with MULLET. Later, David got down TESTIER for 76. It was David's win, 416-321.

At table 12, Diane caught a bingo fest between Barbara Bultz (Dollard-des-Ormeaux QC) and Teri Tetreault (Calgary AB). Barbara played NAtIVES for 72 and BEANERY to the Y for 85. Teri played DARTLING through the T for 64 and SATIRIC for 92. A close finish, but it was Barbara's win, 424-417.

I see Wendy McGrath (Calgary AB) and Mike Ebanks (Calgary AB) wrap up their game with a look into the dictionary. I hear her say, "oh, it is foul, too." Wendy, formerly from Australia, has a fun sound to her voice when she's telling you the unvarnished truth. And the truth as she saw it there was that in their game she'd challenged off Mike's phoney CEMETRY*, but then let him get away with CEMETARY* the next play. If she could kick herself under the table, I think she would have! Mike opened the game with CArROTS and she got down SIENItES on the triple for 74. It was Mike's win, 441-326.

At table 1, Dean Saldanha (Richmond BC) has firmed up his spot in the finals tomorrow. Yeah Dean! Woo-hoo! His opponent, a "titch#" less enthused than the rest of us over the win that pushed Dean over the top, fought valiently to make it "not so." Dean opened the game with DIAPERS for 87 and then Libero double-doubled with OUTPLANS through the P for 90. Not done there, he immediately bingoed on his next turn with INGESTA for 77. Then Dean played DRAGNET for 82. They were tied then at 233-233. Libero then played MAJOR to the triple for 45. Dean then got another bingo with OVeRLOUD through the V for 62. As if to say, "not yet, Dean," Libero extended MAJOR to MAJORING to the triple for 54. Dean then played YEH for a bunch and was up by 7. The game became less uncertain after Dean played his next and final bingo: mAKEABLE through the K for 64. Toss in his "cheap X play" for 45 and it was Dean's win, 499-461.

At table 2, an incredible game was going down, too. In the game, Tony Leah (Ajax ON) opened with the phoney ENDITER* and Evan called it off to play his own bingo, FOOTAGE for 80. (After the game, Evan entertained whether he should have left it on and played FOOTGEAR instead. Tony in stunned disbelief over the game's result didn't register a comment.) Undaunted, Tony's next play was RETaINED for 61. Evan bingoed back with PAtRONAL through the T for 86. On a roll, Tony responded with HELlIONS for 74 (that is hellions, if the blank reads funny). A couple of plays later, Tony made a 22-point play of FILLING one short of the triple and given the opportunity with it open found and played the beautiful 102-point SUCcOMB on the triple lane, creating FILLINGS in the process (pronounced with a long O like in the word MOW, since that is how it pronounced here). In the end, despite valient effort on Tony's part, it was Evan's game, 483-442. Such hard-fought battles at tables 1 and 2!

At table 5, Craig Rowland (Mississauga ON) eked out a 2-point win against George MacAulay (Saskatoon SK), 431-429. Craig was truly stunned that he'd won and pointed out George's AGENIZE for 93 followed by BUSY to the triple hooking to make AGENIZES for 54. It all came down to a SATIRE rack. Craig had AEINRST. He actually put down NASTIER on the triple lane and then picked it up and put down the anagram STAINER instead. Lady luck was looking down on him when he drew out of the bag EODNRST which fit perfectly to create RODENTS/STAINERS. This bingo bango gave him the win.

Dean's win makes him a Gibson case and John Chew goes out of the room to best configure the round 18 pairings. Check them out on the web site! Time for the next round!

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