by Steve Sax
22 February 2011
Each year in the week following the Super Bowl, "Gammon Associates" backgammon club holds a "Tournament of Champions" in which the top sixteen players from the Sunday tournament and the top sixteen players from the Wednesday tournament face off in a five round championship for the title. Players which qualify for both locations receive a bye into the second round of the tournament. And while late night studying of a myriad of backgammon positions kept from enough Sunday tournaments to qualify twice and receive a bye, I still had a berth in the round of 32 having comfortably qualified at the Wednesday site.
That meant that I would have to win five consecutive matches against some of the finest players in the Los Angeles area. Those players include 2010 Las Vegas Senior's Champion Norm Wiggins, 2009 Pittsburgh champion Bob Glass and 2004 California State Backgammon Champion and GA player of the year (1995, 1996) Jona Alexander. Other former GA players of the year competing on Sunday, February 13th include four time "Player of the Year" Azzam Masarani, three time "Player of the year" (and tournament director) Patrick Gibson and two time "Player of the Year" Justin Nunez. Rounding out the list were one time "Player's of the Year" John Rockwell, Frank Ley, and "2010 Gammon Associates Player of the Year", George Haskour.
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