Elaying with words, numbers and fractions

Mario Saliba taking on Theresa Brousson

Although Scrabble is primarily a game of words, it also entails a great deal of number-crunching by the tournament contestant and director alike. But Scrabblers in Malta are also in for some number-splitting when they meet on 8 and 10 February to play in the St Paul’s Shipwreck 1½-Day Tournament.  


With a section of players playing all 10 games over the three half-days, others playing 7 games while others still doing just 4 or even 3 rounds, a level playing field will be created through a simple weighted points calculus that favours the more prolific participants.  


Among these is ten-time National Champion and top-rated player Theresa Brousson, who is still searching for her best form after a long competitive break. But three-time National Champion Mario Saliba, who, on the contrary, has of late been in his best form in years may well trump Brousson if he ends his 7-round tourney on a squeaky clean (or almost so) sheet. 


While the two aces try to outscore each other, the Malta Scrabble Club tries to find the best formula to attract and accommodate more people to play this fascinating and mind-boggling game of word chess. 


(penned & published by Nicky V Laurenti, photo selection & formatting by Bryan Priest)