Australian Masters and State Challenge
Melbourne 2013


WINNER State Individual
Melbourne2005 Trevor Halsall SA Carmel Dodd (SA)
Wollongong2006 Bob Jackman WA Edie Mueller(WA)
Melbourne2007 Naween Fernando VIC Tony Hunt (NSW)
Melbourne2008 David Eldar QLD Harry Malcolm (VIC)
Sydney2009 Andrew Fisher QLD Chris Hall (WA)
Melbourne2010 Peter Kougi NSW Michael McKenna (NSW)
Adelaide2011 Edward Okulicz QLD John Spaan (ACT)
Sydney2012 Edward Okulicz NSW Tony Hunt (NSW)

The venue

Fredricks Restaurant, 980 Mount Alexander Road, Essendon

The format

Australia's top 20 players are selected over a 12 month qualifying period, and then additionally a there are teams of three players representing each of the participating states and territories. You can see how the selection worked at this page.

The top 20 play a round robin of 19 rounds, and simultaneously the 21 players in the State Challenge play a modified round robin which has each player playing the 18 players from the opposing teams.

The competitors

Click on the tabs above to see the players in both the Masters and the State Team Challenge - it should be a great contest! Less than 24 hours till we bring you the first results, hopefully!
Thanks to Barry Harridge for setting everything up, and wish Wilma and me luck in our endeavours to bring you regular updates.

Saturday 8.35 am ~ play is under way, with a couple of players not yet arrived.
8.40 am - all have now arrived safely and before long a few of the quicker players are finishing their games.....a gentle murmur is heard, which I expect will get louder as more head off to the breakout area for refreshments, tastefully and capably organised by Norma Fisher.....

Play under way - Mythili Rudra plays
Dianne Ward - concentration needed

Edie Mueller v Carmel Dodd
Naween Fernando v Russell Honeybun

Round 2 ~ Peter Kougi plays
Cameron Farlow

The first main break ~
morning tea is served

After Round 2 there are six players on two wins in the masters, led by Andrew Fisher with a margin of 224. In the Team Challenge QUEENSLAND and VICTORIA are tied on 4 wins each, and Mythili Rudra leads the individual event - thanks to Mythili for filling in as the standby player, replacing Michael Rubinstein who was unable to take his place.

Round 2 - the game between Alastair Richards 384 and Trevor Halsall 330 - Alastair (trailing by 60) played LIST, Trevor played LUZ trying to block, but Alastair came back with ARENOSE.

Alastair versus Trevor

Naween Fernando plays Anand Bharadwaj - a serious
challenge for both

Relaxing - Richard Jeremy, Rod Talbot, Esther
Perrins & Martin Rose outside the venue
After Game 4 lunch is served, and players are enjoying the break. Peter Kougi is the clear leader in the Masters on 4 wins, and in the Challenge there are 2 players on 4 wins - John Hamilton leads Mythili Rudra by just 29 margin points.....and Victoria are leading South Australia by 3 wins, discounting byes - all players have one bye each which are disregarded in determining the winning state and the individual placings in the Team Challenge.

Enjoying lunch at Fredricks

An extra game at lunchtime - go, girls!

When's the next SA/Vic Challenge?

ACT Pres John Hamilton & Anne Drew

Unfortunately Joanne Craig has had to withdraw from the tournament following Game 4 due to ill health, so there is now a bye in the Masters division. This is really sad for Joanne, and we wish you a speedy return to good health, Jo......
All of Joanne's games played this morning have been voided in the tournament file, but the results of these games will be rated.

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After Game 6 we have an interesting situation - Peter Kougi leads Masters on 6 wins, and friend Mythili Rudra is the individual leader in the Team Challenge, also on 6 wins. The gap between the teams shows Victoria leading by just three wins over South Australia with Western Australia a further game adrift, and the next few games will be important to the outcome.

Andrew Fisher plays Russell Honeybun
Oh, that end-game!

Happy Helen Maurus v Naween

Mythili Rudra and Stephen Mooney

Peter Kougi relaxing between games

Mythili won Game 7 and is still leading the pack, and Peter is still playing game 7 against Helen Maurus

ROUND 8: Sharon Davidson, Tony Hunt,
Anne Drew & Caroline Scrowcroft

Jane Taylor, John Holgate, Andrew
Fisher & Sally Martin

Harry Malcolm, Adam Kretschmer, Martin
Rose & Dianne Brumby

Helen Maurus, Peter Kougi, Nick
Ivanovski, Alastair Richards

Beware the 5-point challenge! Nick Ivanovski challenged RELIEVO (believing it was only RILIEVO) against Naween Fernando.
The challenge lost, Nick lost 5 points and Naween won by 1 point: 463 - 462. Ouch!

Victoria's good lead continues after Round 8, Peter Kougi leads the Masters with Alastair Richards, both on 7 wins, and Mythili Rudra is still a game clear in the Individual section of the Team Challenge......some great contests still to come!

Cam Farlow plays Anand Bharadwaj,
Khen Meerding plays Sharon Davidson

Martin Rose versus Karen Richards,
Dianne Brumby plays Dianne Ward

John Holgate chats with Esther Perrins in
the pleasant breakout area

Later in the day - Rod Talbot looking very
relaxed before Game 10.

Round 10 is well underway, with people already looking forward to the Celebration Dinner which will be served in the playing area, after a quick cleanup! The people at Fredricks Restaurant have been very accommodating, and we thank them for their assistance. More news to follow, at some stage!
Peter Kougi wins his final game for the day to move one game clear of the field, and Mythili Rudra is on 9 games, and very pleased about her day's Scrabble - and Victoria still lead the teams event - go Team Victoria!

Go to the top

Day 2 dawns with most players on time! Dinner last night here at the venue was lovely, with excellent service - the cost to players was subsidised heavily by the grant from Mattel, and those who opted not to attend missed out on a very pleasant evening.

Helen Maurus, Trevor Halsall, Russell Honeybun, Adam
Kretschmer, Naween Fernando, Rod Talbot.

Alastair Richards, Chris Hall, John Spaan, Carmel
Dodd, Trevor Tao.

Caroline Scowcroft, Jane Taylor, John Hamilton,
Dianne Brumby, Karen Richards, Paul Richards.

Esther Perrins, Martin Rose, Richard Jeremy,
Stephen Mooney Pursell,Khen Meerding, Victor Tung

Sally Martin, Dianne Ward, Anne Drew, Graeme
Lock Lee, Norma Fisher, Edie Mueller.

Marj Miller, Cam Farlow, Carol Johnsen, Tony Hunt,
John and Lillan Holgate.

Nathan, our obliging host at Fredricks
A great game in Round 11, with Russell Honeybun and Trevor Tao both recording high scores - Russ 565 and Trevor 405. Russ's score didn't quite eclipse that of Andrew Fisher, whose 628 from yesterday still stands (his opponent scored 388). Russell played three consecutive bingos on his way to a great win: LAIRISE 73, DEVISED 93, and WRONGOUS 76, plus an extra 5 points for Trevor's challenge. Well done, everyone.

After Game 12 Alastair Richards and Peter Kougi are both on 10 wins with Peter having a bye and Alastair playing Richard Jeremy who is currently coming third in the Masters, so there is great interest in the outcome of the game. The first draw for the whole event was between Sally Martin and Adam Kretschmer in the State Challenge, both scoring 359.
I'm hopeful of getting some team photos at lunchtime, but its quite hard to get the players free at the same time.....

Cameron Farlow and Helen Maurus

John Hamilton relaxes with his clarinet

John Holgate plays Anand Bharadwaj

Peter Kougi, a keen Arsenal Fan

Go to the top

After Round 13 Alastair has moved a game ahead of Peter, but Alastair now has a bye and Peter is pitted against Tony Hunt, with the game in its early stages. In the individual section of the teams event Mythili Rudra is a game clear of Stephen Mooney Pursell from South Australia - Mythili is playing Sally Martin from Western Australia, and Stephen is playing Karen Richards from Queensland.

Mythili plays Sally

Stephen plays Karen

Peter versus Tony

Rocky Sharma plays Paul Richards,
Matte Dunn v Caroline Scowcroft

Lunch break now - in the Teams event Sally defeated Mythili, and Karen defeated Stephen, so its an interesting tussle after lunch. Tony was victorious over Peter, so the Masters will be interesting the Team Challenge Victoria are well ahead of the field, and will be hoping for good tiles in the remaining five games.
Finally, the team photos have all been taken, and here they are.....

Team South Australia - Stephen Mooney Pursell,
Jane Taylor, Adam Kretschmer

Team Tasmania - Khen Meerding, Dianne Brumby,
Martin Rose

Team Western Australia - Sally Martin, Chris Hall,
Dianne Ward

Team Queensland - Karen Richards, Paul Richards,
Sheryl Davidson

The Australian Capital Territory Team - John Spaan,
Caroline Scowcroft, John Hamilton

Team New South Wales - Rocky Sharma,
Graeme Lock Lee, Victor Tung

Team Victoria, the host state - Harry Malcolm,
Mythili Rudra, Matte Dunn

The organisers - Marj Miller, Carol Johnsen, Norma
Fisher - thanks for taking the photo, Sally Martin!

After Round 15 Alastair Richards leads Peter Kougi by 2 clear games, with four games to play, and in the State Team Challenge Victoria are 2 1/2 games clear of South Australia. Matte Dunn from Victoria has taken the lead in the individual standings, two games clear of Mythili Rudra and Stephen Mooney Pursell. All three have had their compulsory bye, so it will be a tough run to the finish for all.

Round 16 is done, Alastair is currently 2 games clear of Peter and they are playing now in the Masters, and Stephen Mooney Pursell and Mythili are level on wins in the individual teams race - more news to follow.....

Stephen Mooney Pursell v Caroline

Peter Kougi versus Alastair Richards

Andrew Fisher plays Naween Fernando

Edie Mueller plays Trevor Tao

Round 17 has concluded, and Alastair Richards is now uncatchable! Well done Alastair, a great win.
Interest lies in the individual battle in the State Teams event - Stephen Mooney Pursell is 52 margin points ahead of Mythili who is playing Caroline Scowcroft, whilst Stephen is doing battle with Matte Dunn, who is one game behind but has a superior margin.
Teamwise Victoria is just 2 games clear of the strong South Australian team, so the outcome there is far from settled.
Earlier in the day Edie Mueller played CHEEKIER for 239 points WOW! and a short time ago Harry Malcolm accidentally played QIUZ* which went unchallenged......lucky Harry!

The last round commences - in Masters Alastair plays Andrew Fisher who is currently in fourth position on 10.5 wins, Russ Honeybun has moved up to second place but has a bye (12 wins), and Peter Kougi is currently third on 11.5 wins.
The State Team Challenge Trophy looks like going to Victoria, well done, Team Victoria.
The placings are still undecided in the individual team comp - Mythili Rudra (13.5) plays John Hamilton, Matte Dunn (12.5) plays Jane Taylor, and Stephen Mooney Pursell (also on 12.5) is playing Paul Richards. Anything could happen!

Results from the final round (19) are coming to hand - John Hamilton has defeated Mythili Rudra - well played, John! And Matte Dunn has won his last game, taking him to the top position - well done Matte! The top three finished on 13.5 wins each, with Matte having a superior margin.
In Masters, as mentioned, Alastair Richards is the new Champ, second place has gone to Russell Honeybun, and third is Andrew Fisher. More will follow later, with some winning photos.

And here they are! Congrats to all who played, and special congrats to all who did well, and thank you to all who helped make the event a success - Norma Fisher, Carol Johnsen, Wilma Vialle and Barry Harridge, the input and hard work of all was appreciated. Next year's event will take place in South Australia, so many will look forward to competing there.
Marj Miller, signing off......

Alastair Richards, the Masters Champ,
before the last game when the title
was in the bag!
Congrats, Alastair, a great win!
Thanks Nick Ivanovski for the pic

The winners in the Australian Masters, in happy mood!
L to R: Andrew Fisher 3rd and High Game (628),
Edie Mueller High Word (CHEEKIER 239),
Naween Fernando 5th, Peter Kougi 4th
Alastair Richards, 2013 Champion, & Russell Honeybun 2nd

The victorious Victorian Team, winners of the State Team Challenge
on 37 wins
, well done!
Congratulations, Matte Dunn, Harry Malcolm and Mythili Rudra
A strong team who won this event for Victoria for only the
second time in its eight year history.

The great and daunting team from South Australia,
second place with 34 wins:
Adam Kretschmer, Jane Taylor and Stephen Mooney
- in second place for much of the day.

The third placed team from New South Wales: Victor
Tung, Graeme Lock Lee,
(Russ Honeybun, presenter),
& Rocky Sharma. This team started rather slowly, but
improved many placings after Round 12!

Individual Winners in the Team Challenge:
Matte Dunn first, Caroline Scowcroft High Game 559
& High Word VESTIGES 158, Stephen Mooney Pursell third,
& Mythili Rudra second

For full details of the event click HERE

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