By Michael Benjamin
They started the tournament on a losing note, conceding a 4 point defeat to Guyana but Trinidad and Tobago rebounded to crush Barbados 25-11 to cart off the top prize when action in the Caribbean Scrabble Team Championships concluded at the Bank of Guyana Sports Club, Avenue of the Republic, yesterday afternoon. The beating by Trinidad obliterated Barbados’ hopes of slipping into the second place and they were eventually relegated to the cellar position.
Local player, Ulric Harris salvaged some pride for the hosts when he captured the prize for the most points for a bingo (striding at 158) while national champion, Fred Collins secured the prize for the highest score in a game (607), following his mauling of Barbadian Orlet Bullock. Margarida DeSouza, who had chalked up an impeccable six games when Barbados faced Guyana endured a torrid day, losing all but one of her games but was nevertheless adjudged the Most Valuable Player for her team.
Anthony Modeste copped the MVP award for Trinidad and Tobago and was also adjudged the overall MVP after he had compiled a tournament high 10 games with a positive spread of 1059. Abigail McDonald scored 9 games with a positive spread of 737 to secure the MVP award for the Guyanese team.
The morning sessions belonged to the Barbadians after they notched up 13 games as against 5 by the Trinidadians. The latter team bounced back in the final pre-lunch sitting winning four games through the efforts of Darlington (defeated Modeste by 9), Carter ( over Ross by 93), King (over Yates by 84) and Graham ( over John by 31).
After dominating the local players on Friday, DeSouza faltered during the morning sessions, succumbing to Kurt Ross (28), Modeste (127) and Charles (132). Her poor fortunes continued into the post lunch session when she surrendered to John (80) and Yates (76) but she managed to earn a conciliation game against Alexander (103). Despite her dismal showing, the avid word former still managed to cop the MVP accomplishment by dint of her earlier performance.
Her teammate, Bullock, who had shown remarkable resilience against the local players last Friday, failed to replicate his feat after experiencing debilitating fortunes. He surrendered his first three encounters to Patricia John (50), Yates (69) and Alexander (30) and the situation got worseduring the post lunch sessions after he lost all three of his games to Ross (28), Modeste (90) and Charles (151).
The Trinidadian players were obviously still incensed over their losing first round performance against the hosts and decided to transfer their venom to the Bajans. When the first sitting had concluded the scorecard read 5-1 in favour of the Trinis. They intensified their efforts in the second sitting and carted off all six sets before the Barbadians rebounded in the final pre-lunch set with 4 of the 6 games.
The Trinidadians returned to their winning ways, notching up five of the six games in the immediate post lunch sitting and followed up with 4 clear wins in the penultimate set. Barbados refused to be subdued and ended the session with three of the six games. Their efforts were, however, insufficient and they ended up in the cellar just behind the host nation.
The players return to the same venue this morning to contest the individual championship and judging from the high quality of play during the team championships, defending champion, Fred Collins will have to dig deep to retain the accolade he won in Trinidad two years ago. His staunchest opponents are Trinidadian Leslie Charles, Barbadian, Bullock local champion, McDonald and Barbadian, DeSouza.
Today’s action commences at 10:00hrs, while registration was conducted yesterday afternoon upon completion of the team championships.
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