Backgammon Double Consulting World Championship & 
5th Grand Prix de Suisse 2000
(Casino / Hotel Eden / Hotel Splendide Royal in Lugano/Switzerland), 25 - 29 October 2000

Tournament Report by Harald Johanni

For five years the Swiss Backgammon Group has organized the Grand Prix de Suisse and the experienced and international well known tournament-directors-crew with James Ballié, Raffaelo Gatti, and Fabrizio Sommaruga do a pretty good job! For the first time also the Double Consulting World Championship took place In Lugano and it was a tough best of three 7-point matches competition.

Before the consulting doubles finals started at the casino the Grand Prix de Suisse semifinals were played on Saturday afternoon at the hotel Splendide Royal.

Paul Magriel had to play Maurice Djemal from Israel and X-22 had about 15% winning chances at double match point when Maurice Djemal (White) rolled his second worst number (see position).
By 2-2:2x(7/3)* he had to leave a shot. Paul hit (by 6-2) and won the game to qualify for the finals.

The semifinals of the Grand Prix de Suisse: X-22 (left) vs. Maurice Djemal (right). Kibitz is Lorenzo Peratoner.

In the other semifinals Denis Carlston from the United States had to play the German Harald Johanni.

Semifinalist Denis Carlston with wife and daughter in the train to the Casino for watching the consulting doubles finals.

17-point match
Maurice Djemal (White) (16) -Paul Magriel (16) (Black)
White rolled his second worst number and lost the match.

Harald Johanni.

Johanni was leading the 17-point match by 5-3 when Denis Carlston redoubled very early to 4 after a hit in the outfield (see position).

Many of Black´s wins (39% winning chances) come from hits. But Johanni simply won the race, kept the match lead and won the semifinals by 17-10.

17-point match
Denis Carlston (3) (White)- Harald Johanni (5) (Black)
White on roll (owning the cube on 2). Cube action?!

In the evening during the gala dinner at the casino the consulting doubles finals between team Denis Jersov and team Paul Magriel (X-22 with Victoria) started. The first match was decided by a bad take of the Russian team in the first game (see position).
The following gammon loss was the foundation-stone for the first match´s win for team X-22. In the second match Paul Magriel had to play fast in the end not to get time penalty points to lose the match. Maybe 20 seconds left team Magriel & Victoria ended the match by winning the double match point game and thus got the World Champion of Consulting Doubles.

Semifinals Doubles Consulting (from left): Mike Svobodny, Morten Holm, Denis Jersov, Arthur Stein, Victoria and Paul Magriel.

7-point match
Magriel & Victoria (0) (W.) - Denis Jersov & friend (0) (B.)
White on roll. Cube action!?

On Sunday afternoon Paul Magriel had to play Harald Johanni in the finals of the Grand Prix de Suisse.
Leading the 21-point match by 4-3 X-22 sent a borderline, but well timed redouble to the German and soon afterwards cashed 4 points.
However, Paul Magriel couldn´t defend his lead because Johanni´s dice got hot like in Nova Gorica. Harald Johanni won the match by 21-15.

Lugano is worth a trip not only for the winners! Don´t miss it next year!


Championship (34):
Main: 1. Harald Johanni (Germany) 2 .Paul Magriel (X-22/U.S.A.) 3. Denis Carlston (U.S.A.) 3. Maurice Djemal (Israel)
Consolation: 1. Vittorio Castro (Switzerland) 2. Denis Jersov (Russia), 3. Elio Hamoui (Italy) 3. Michel Siegel (France)
Last Chance:1. André Nicoulin (Switzerland) 2. Mike Svobodny (U.S.A.)

Main: 1. Jerzy Behnke (Germ.) 2. Damian Plesec (Slovenia)
3. Helge Keller (Germany) 2. Curtis Lucas (U.S.A.)
Consolation:1. Lagana (Italy) 2. Scremin 3. Kirit 3. Staywers
Last Chance:1. Magdassin 2. Martin de Bruin

Consulting Doubles:
1. Paul Magriel & Victoria 2. Denis Jersov & friend

Paul Magriel (4) (White) - Harald Johanni (3) (Black)
White (owning the 2-cube) on roll. Cube action?!