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Nigel Richards was at it again, this time winning the 2013 United States National Scrabble Championship and a $10,000 prize in Las Vegas. This was Richards’ fifth time winning the U.S. Championship. His record at this event was 24-7, with a cumulative score of 1,934 points. Actually, Richard lost his final game in Las Vegas 442-421 to Komol Panyasophonlert of Thailand. His lead going in to that round, though, was enough to maintain the win.


At the North American World Championship Qualifier, Patrick Hoban claimed the title of North American Champion and Ben Leverett the title of North American Dragon Duel Champion. The Dragon Duel tournament series is only open to those born in 2000 or later. Both earned places at the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG World Championship in Las Vegas (August 11-12) plus prizes that included a variety of card packs, a tablet computer, a personalized jersey, and a super-rare Digvorzhak, King of Heavy Industry YCS Prize Card.


The two participating titled players were upset in the open section at the Las Vegas Mind Sports Festival, leaving the Championship and grand trophy to Jeffrey Gallegos. In the under-1800 section the winner was Alex Stiger, in the under-1400 section high school chess coach, Robert Lucero, and in the under-1000 section, with the only perfect 5-0 record, Paul Ventura.

Alexander Kocheyev of Belarus won the Minsk Open 2013 tournament.

K Jennitha Anto of India won the women’s section of the International Physically Disabled Chess Association 13th Annual Tournament. The event was divided in to two groups, one for those this mobility impairments and one for those with other medical issues.

Carissa Yip, age 9, is now the youngest U.S. Chess Expert.

India took the title in the World Youth (Under-16) Chess Olympiad, besting Iran in the final round. Second place went to Russia and third to Turkey.

At least five grandmasters participated in the Manhattan Open but it was FM Leif Pressman of New York who won the event.

At the Ramadan Rapid Open Chess Tournament in Qatar, locally based Filipino player Robert Arellano defeated Shatrughan Jha of India in the final round, taking home the trophy and a prize of 3,000 riyals.

Magic: The Gathering

Grand Prix Remini saw a particularly international group of contestants testing the waters of 2014 Limited. Christoph Aukenthaler of Austria took the title of Champion with blue/green.

On the same weekend, Alexander Hayne of Canada won Grand Prix Calgary by besting mostly local competitors.

But it was Amsterdam that hosted the Magic World Championship and World Magic Cup. The winner of the former was Shahar Shenhar of Israel, of the latter, team France. An underdog and the youngest player in the Magic World Championship, Shenhar battled back from a 0-2 start in the final match to take home the $40,000 top prize. Second place, with a $20,000 prize, went to Reid Duke of the United States. More than 70 four-player teams competed in the World Magic Cup. The members of the French winning team, Raphaël Lévy, Yann Guthmann, Timothée Simonot, and Stephane Soubrier, took home prizes of $12,000 each.

Being inducted in to the Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour Hall of Fame this year are Luis Scott-Vargas, William Jensen, and Ben Stark. Another player, Chris Pikula, narrowly missed the vote threshold for getting in, so WOTC is extending a special invitation to the next Pro Tour stop in Dublin to make sure he has sufficient Pro Tour Points to qualify again next year.


At the Rubik’s Cube World Championship, there were 17 different events, including 2×2, 7×7, 3×3 with feet, and 5×5 blindfolded. But the most coveted title, for the classic 3×3, went to Feliks Zemdegs of Australia, who’s average time was 8.18 seconds. His fastest time was 7.36 seconds (which is not a world’s record). I’ve never been able to solve a Rubik’s Cube, even having spent as much as an hour trying!

The 2013 Online Hive Tournament has concluded on All games used the upcoming Pillbug expansion. User “image13” won.

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