News items from 2018 (first half)


29/06/18: Roland wins GP5 tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were ten players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the fifth of our series of nine GP5 tournaments.
Before the event Daniel Eldridge and Mandy Macdonald played out most of a Premier Two Blue match, which was adjourned at 8-7 in Daniel's favour.
The line-up included a welcome return to action for Adrian Farthing, who last graced our events early in 2006!
Roland Herrera took the honours with wins over Ian Tarr and Daniel before beating Nick Barham in the final.
Nick has previously overcome Stephen Little and Simonetta Herrera, and has now opened up a 45 points GP5 lead over second placed Steve Morris.
Ian won the consolation flight, defeating Stephen and Adrian.

27/06/18: Nick tops Premier One; Mathew wins Intermediates Trophy

Nick Barham scored a brace of victories yesterday at the Summerhouse, Worle, where Gary Plant was the visitor.
The victories moved Nick to the top of Premier One.
Meanwhile at the Beaufort, Clifton, the final of last week's Intermediates Trophy was played out.
And Mathew Nicholls took the title with a 7-4 win over Jim Green.

26/06/18: Ten in Monday action

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were ten players in action on Monday, including the eight who contested the sixth phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix at the Bristol County Sports Club -- a DMP Tourno.
In Premier One action at the Rainbow Casino were Nick Barham and Cecilia Sparke, who shared the spoils -- Nick winning 11-8 before Cecilia's 11-5 victory.
The DMP Tourno threatened to end in a six way tie, but John Curran ended that by winning his final game against Roland Herrera to take the pot outright.
Simonetta Herrera's 52 points lead in the SGP table was maintained, as was Mathew Nicholls's even bigger lead in the race to be the competition's leading intermediate.
Mathew also heads the DMP section of the Roland Herrera and John Curran intermediate sponsorship.

24/06/18: Alex takes Sunday honours; Brunel draw done

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eight players in action on Sunday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the sixth of our series of monthly Sunday tournaments.
Tim Line and Tom Chapman got there early to ensure that the fourth round of the Brunel Trophy was completed in time for the fifth round draw.
Tom won, so Tim is eliminated, leaving fourteen survivors, only two of whom -- Cecilia Sparke and Ed Turner -- have both lives intact.
So at the end of this round there will be somewhere between seven and nine remaining in contention.
The field for the day's main event could have been nine strong, but one player elected to watch England versus Panama instead.
Alex Hodge -- victor over George Georgiou, Stephen Little and Roland Herrera -- won the event.
Roland had defeated Tom and Simonetta Herrera to earn his place in the final.
Tim won the consolation final by overcoming Tom and Cynthia Roberts.

22/06/18: Jim and Mathew to contest Intermediates Trophy final

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were fifteen players in action on Thursday, including fourteen at the Rainbow Casino, where five contested the annual Intermediates Trophy knock-out.
There was league action earlier at the Knights Templar, where Steve Morris scored a double over Andrew Cobb in Premier Two Blue.
At the casino Ian Hedges defeated Daniel Eldridge in the same division, while in the parallel Red Division runaway leader Adam Sinclair further extended his lead by beating Richard Owsley twice.
The tournament featured just five intermediates, including David Wilson who was making his Bristol Backgammon debut.
Jim Green and Mathew Nicholls emerged as the finalists, and will play for the title at a date, time and place yet to be decided.
Alongside the tournament there was a five player low stakes chouette, where Roland Herrera fared best.

20/06/18: Steve tops Premier Three as history is made

A Premier Three double header played today saw a little piece of Bristol Backgammon history made.
The Mendip Inn, Oakhill -- a new venue for our competitions -- played host to Steve Cox's double success against Carwyn Jenkins.
The wins moved Steve to the top of the league table, and the second one was the seven thousandth league match played since the first Premier League season began in 2000.

19/06/18: Paul exits Brunel Trophy; Gaz goes third

There were two matches played on Tuesday.
The Blathwayt Arms was the venue for a Premier One match between Gaz Owen and Gary Plant, which Gaz won 11-2.
This moves him up to third in the league.
And at the Rainbow Casino Paul Watts was eliminated from the Brunel Trophy when he succumbed to Dave Pym.

19/06/18: Thirteen in Monday action

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fourteen players present on Monday at the Bristol County Sports Club, including the eight who contested the fifth phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix -- a pair of 3-point round robins.
One of those elected to watch England versus Tunisia while directing operations.
London's Mike Ireland was visiting to play Jason Champion in a trio of UK Champions League matches, where Mike won two out of three.
Jason, however, is assured of progressing to the knock-out phase, and may be the only one of the seven Bristol players to do so, although Cecilia Sparke still has a chance of joining him.
Chris Hughes remained in contention for the Brunel Trophy by beating the previously undefeated George Georgiou.
Only Cecilia and Ed Turner go into the fifth round draw with both lives intact.
In Premier Two Blue there were wins for Stephen Little and Drew Caudwell, over Daniel Eldridge and Ian Hedges respectively.
And in the advertised event both pots were shared.
Simonetta Herrera's SGP lead extends to 52 points, while Mathew Nicholls is a runaway leader of the race to be the competition's top intermediate.
Mathew is also confirmed as the winner of the January to June 3-point round robin section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship.

17/06/18: Ed wins in Weston

Ed Turner visited Weston-super-Mare today and defeated Tom Chapman 11-8.
The Premier Two Red match was played at the Old Colonial.

16/06/18: Ed wins battle of the Brunel undefeated; Simonetta eliminated

The only fourth round Brunel Trophy match where both protagonists started undefeated took place at the Rainbow Casino this morning.
And Ed Turner edged it against Simon Baker.
Only Ed and Cecilia Sparke remain with unblemished records, although George Georgiou can join them by defeating Chris Hughes.
And this evening Mike Smith entertained Simonetta Herrera in St Werburgh's in what was effectively a sudden death match.
Simonetta held a substantial lead, but never quite got across the finishing line, so her involvement in this year's competition is over.

15/06/18: Jason wins June Grand Prix tournament; Nick out of Brunel Trophy

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were sixteen players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, of whom fifteen contested the sixth of this year's series of twelve monthly grand prix tournaments.
Before the tournament Nick Barham met Neil Young in the fourth round of the Brunel Trophy.
And Neil recovered from 6-9 in arrears to stay alive, Nick bowing out after the loss of his second life.
In the advertised event Jason Champion was fortunate to be allowed to enter, having arrived without notice with the draw just started.
The draw was restarted and Jason was the recipient of the only bye!
His good fortune did not end there, as victories over Mandy Macdonald and Cynthia Roberts took him to the final.
Richard Owsley emerged as his opponent from the other half of the draw, defeating Ian Tarr, Simonetta Herrera and Gaz Owen en route.
The final was one way traffic as Richard failed to win a point.
Jason becomes the second player to be assured of a place in the 2019 Bristol Masters, having now won two of this year's monthly events.
Alex Hodge took the consolation flight, defeating Stephen Little, Ian and Nick.
This was enough to extend Alex's Bristol Grand Prix lead to 55 points.

13/06/18: Wednesday league and Brunel Trophy summary

There were three Premier One matches and one fourth round Brunel Trophy tie played on Wednesday.
In the top flight league leader Chris Rogers suffered his second defeat in two days, losing 3-11 to Alex Hodge at the Rainbow Casino.
And in the same division Fred North and Cecilia Sparke shared the spoils of a double header, also played at the casino.
The Brunel Trophy action took place at the Tobacco Factory, where Ian Tarr retained his sole remaining life by defeating previously unscathed Simon Hughes.

12/06/18: Chris and Gary share the spoils

Premier One leader Chris Rogers met Gary Plant at the Rainbow Casino for a double header this evening.
And Chris began with an 11-3 victory.
Gary struck back, however, to win the return 11-7.

12/06/18: Simonetta wins Tric Trac Tourno

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were eleven players in action on Monday at the Bristol County Sports Club, including the nine who contested the fourth phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix -- a Tric Trac Tourno.
Two other matches were played -- both involving Ian Hedges.
He scored victories over Stephen Little -- in the Brunel Trophy, where both players now have one life remaining -- and Drew Caudwell -- in Premier Two Blue.
In the same division there was also a match adjourned, with Daniel Eldridge leading Stephen 4-3.
In the advertised event Simonetta Herrera scored most points, and now leads the SGP table.

10/06/18: Sunday wins for James and Ed

Two league matches were played on Sunday.
In Premier Two Red Ed Turner scored a narrow victory over Ismail Yilmaz at the Black Castle.
And there was an even narrower win at Cabot Court, Weston-super-Mare, for James Lintell-Smith over Carwyn Jenkins in Premier Three.

10/06/18: At last! The first league action of June

Two league matches took place yesterday.
In Premier Two Red Pearl Foster scored an emphatic win over Cliff Blofield at the Bolero Lounge, Yate.
And the Beaufort Arms was the venue for a Conference League meeting of Andrew Gay and Mathew Nicholls, which Mathew won 11-7.

08/06/18: Stephen the star of a quiet week

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were ten players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the fourth of this year's series of eight GP30 tournaments.
Unusually there was no action in either the leagues or the Brunel Trophy, nor has there been all week.
As on Monday, when Stephen Little came out on top of a modest field of six, so he did it again, winning the evening's event via a bye and victories over Roland Herrera, Nick Barham and Simonetta Herrera.
Simonetta had defeated Adam Sinclair and Tim Line en route to the final.
Adam took the consolation flight, beating Cynthia Roberts and Roland.
Simonetta's GP30 lead is now 95 points, with Tony Walters her closest challenger.

05/06/18: Stephen wins Monday Nackgammon tournament

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were just six players in action on Monday at the Bristol County Sports Club to contest the third phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix -- a Nackgammon Tourno.
So it turned out to be a short session, since all of those were seasoned players, and everything was done and dusted by 9pm.
Stephen Little took the honours with six points from his five games.
Adam Sinclair takes over the leadership of the SGP table, with Simonetta Herrera and Stephen not far behind.
In the Drew Caudwell sponsored Nackgammon Grand Prix George Georgiou's lead has been cut to a very small one, with Adam in second place.

01/06/18: "Amnesty" for Premier Three players

The Premier League checkpoint passed at midnight yesterday.
Not a single player in Premier One, Premier Two Blue or Premier Two Red incurred a penalty.
But the story is a little different in Premier Three, where three players fell foul of the rules, including two who failed to claw back penalties incurred at the previous checkpoint on March 31st.
However Director Ian Tarr has decided on the unusual step of declaring an amnesty for those -- Matt Robson and James Timoney -- whose March penalties should have become permanent.
His reasoning revolves mostly around the fact that Premier League backgammon is a new experience for five of the seven players involved.
So those penalties from March and May, while all still showing in the league table, will now be reclaimable by compliance with the terms of the July 31st checkpoint.

01/06/18: Roland takes speedgammon honours

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were sixteen players in action on Thursday, including the fourteen at the Rainbow Casino who contested the fourth of this year's series of eight Speedgammon tournaments.
One Premier Two Blue match was played earlier in the day.
Mandy Macdonald defeated Steve Morris 11-9 at the Windmill.
In the advertised event the players were drawn into three round robin groups, two of five players, one of four.
Roland Herrera in the smaller group and Tony Walters in one of the larger groups scored outright group wins to progress to the knock-out phase.
The other group saw Nick Barham pip Ian Tarr on points difference to complete the knock-out line-up.
Roland then defeated Nick and Tony to take the tournament win.
Ian retains his 15 points SGGP lead, but now has two Herreras breathing down his neck.

30/05/18: Wednesday Brunel Trophy and league round-up

There were six matches played on Wednesday.
Another fourth round Brunel Trophy match occurred at the Rainbow Casino, where Alex Hodge and Marcus Evans met in what was effectively a sudden death match.
Alex won, so Marcus is the latest player to exit the competition.
The other five matches played were all in Premier Two.
In the Blue Division Stephen Little and Dave Pym fought out a double header at the Great Western in Swindon where both matches ended in Dave's favour.
Meanwhile it was a productive day for Neil Young in the Red Division.
Needing to record three results in order to avoid the permanence of the penalty points he incurred on March 31st, Neil not only managed this but also reaped a rich harvest of points, beating George Georgiou, Tom Chapman and Ed Turner to sail into the top half of the league.
The May 31st checkpoint will pass with all of the top three divisions completely penalty free.
Premier Three may be a different story, however.

29/05/18: Tuesday round-up

There were six matches played on Tuesday.
The first of the fourth round matches in this year's Brunel Trophy double elimination event was a local derby.
Cecilia Sparke scored an emphatic victory over Chris Rogers, confirming the recent German Open winner's exit from the competition while leaving both of Cecilia's lives unscathed.
In Premier One there were two double headers, both of which were one sided in terms of results.
Nick Barham conceded only two points in defeating Andy Boysan at the Pump House, the second match lasting just one game -- a quadruple backgammon.
And while Simon Baker's victories over Alex Hodge weren't quite as emphatic, his brace of wins moved him up to second place in the league table.
Premier Two Red was the other division to see action -- a home victory for Simonetta Herrera over Ian Tarr.

28/05/18: Cliff wins at the Old Fish Market

In a Sunday meeting at the Old Fish Market Cliff Blofield scored an 11-9 victory over Ian Tarr in Premier Two Red.

26/05/18: James beats James

In a Premier Three match at the Rainbow Casino today James Timoney beat James Lintell-Smith 11-9.

25/05/18: Stephen wins Handicap tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were sixteen players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, including the fourteen who contested the fourth of this year's series of nine Handicap Trophy tournaments.
Three Premier League matches were played.
James Lintell-Smith and Jon Organ played out a Premier Three double header, and it was Jon who came out on top with a pair of hard fought victories which have moved him into second place.
And an adjourned Premier Two Blue match between Stephen Little and Mandy Macdonald ended in an 11-8 win for Stephen, who was to have a succesful evening.
He won the advertised event, defeating Tim Line, Ian Tarr and Chris Rogers before edging a close final against new Brit Simonetta Herrera.
Simonetta had progressed via a bye and wins over Daniel Eldridge and Gaz Owen.
Nick Barham took the consolation flight after beating Tim, Adam Sinclair and Steve Morris.
Gaz has regained the Handicap Trophy lead from Adam, while Stephen has moved into second place.

23/05/18: Wednesday Premier League round-up

There were five Premier League matches played on Wednesday.
In the top flight Jason Champion and Gaz Owen met for a double header at the Cat and Wheel.
Jason scored a whitewash in the opener, but Gaz had his revenge by winning the return 11-4.
Daniel Eldridge's tenure of top spot in Premier Two Blue lasted just one day.
Rufus Rozelaar is back in pole position after edging out Phil Charlton 11-10 at the Rainbow Casino.
And in Premier Three Matt Robson played host to Steve Cox in Emersons Green.
Steve won 11-5 to go second in the league.
In the same division John Curran scored an 11-6 victory over Jon Organ.

23/05/18: Daniel goes top

In another double header yesterday Daniel Eldridge moved to the top of Premier Two Blue when he scored a brace of narrow wins over Andrew Cobb at the Ram, Bath.

23/05/18: Spoils shared at the Old Colonial

Ian Tarr visited Weston-super-Mare yesterday evening for a Premier Two Red double header with Tom Chapman.
Ian won the opener 11-4, and was leading 5-3 in the return before Tom executed an efficient quadruple gammon for victory.

23/05/18: Alan makes a successful return

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were twelve players in action on Monday at the Bristol County Sports Club to contest the second phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix -- a pair of six player 3-point round robins.
Amongst the field were Mal Williams, making a welcome Bristol Backgammon debut, and former Premier League player Alan Parfitt, making his first appearance for over a year.
And it was a happy return for Alan, who won one group outright, while Mathew Nicholls and Adam Sinclair shared the spoils of the other.
Mathew takes over the leadership of the SGP, with a seventeen point cushion over joint second placers Adam and Ian Tarr.

20/05/18: Brunel Trophy fourth round draw made

Brunel TrophyThe draw for the fourth round of Bristol Backgammon's richest tournament, the Brunel Trophy, was made on Sunday by Tony Walters.
There are twenty survivors in this year long double elimination knock-out, six of whom are unbeaten thus far.
There is just one tie where both players are guaranteed a place in round five, while five of the other ties are effectively sudden death.
Matches are to be completed by May 21st and the draw can be found here.

20/05/18: Adam takes Sunday honours

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eleven players in action on Sunday at the Rainbow Casino, including the nine who contested the fifth of this year's series of ten Sunday tournaments.
Stuart Mann and Paul Watts contested a Premier One double header alongside the tournament, and they won one match apiece.
Adam Sinclair was one of two players not to receive a bye in the tournament, nevertheless he came through to win the event, vanquishing George Georgiou, Alex Hodge and Simonetta Herrera before edging to victory against Tony Walters in the final.
Tony had defeated Stephen Little and Ian Tarr en route.
Stephen took the consolation flight with victories over George and Alex.

18/05/18: Success on two fronts for Simon

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were fifteen players in action on Thursday, including the thirteen at the Rainbow Casino who contested the fourth of this year's series of nine GP5 tournaments.
The Pump House was the venue for the night's only league match, a Premier One encounter between Andy Boysan and Stuart Mann.
Stuart won 11-7, and appears to be on the road to recovery after his poor start to the season.
And in the last of the third round matches in this year's Brunel Trophy Simon Baker visited Steve Morris in Redland and came away with a victory which leaves both of his lives intact while consigning Steve to the exit.
Simon then picked up where he left off to win the evening's advertised event, which was directed by an amalgam of Stephen Little, Richard Owsley and Daniel Eldridge in the absence of the regular director.
Victories over Alex Hodge, Nick Barham and Steve paved the way for a final triumph against Daniel.
Daniel had previously beaten Adam Sinclair and Roland Herrera.
Tim Line won the consolation flight, via wins over Simonetta Herrera and Ian Anderson.
GP5 leader Nick did just enough to stave off the challenge of second placed Steve.

17/05/18: Wednesday league action

There were three Premier League matches played on Wednesday.
In Premier One Andy Boysan defeated Cecilia Sparke 11-5 at the Arnolfini.
And in the same division Stuart Mann leapfrogged Fred North at the foot of the table by beating him 11-4.
A closer contest occurred at Thingwall Park, where Jon Organ edged home 11-10 against host Steve Cox in Premier Three.

16/05/18: Adam another step closer

Adam Sinclair yesterday defeated Chris Hughes 11-3 at the Brewhouse and Kitchen.
He is now not too far off assuring his promotion from Premier Two Red.
His record of thirty-four wins from his thirty-eight matches in two seasons at this level is an extraordinary one.

15/05/18: Jason presses title claim

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were sixteen players in action on Monday, including ten at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom nine contested the opening phase of the Monday Club Summer Grand Prix -- a DMP Tourno.
Six and a half Premier League matches were played.
Jason Champion scored his second league double in two days, twice defeating Steffen Nowak at the Star and Dove.
He has emerged as a real contender for the league title after a slow start to the season, while Steffen sinks deep into the relegation dogfight.
In the Blue Division there were wins for Phil Charlton and Mandy Macdonald.
Phil defeated Drew Caudwell at the Post Office Tavern, while Mandy's victory over Stephen Little at the club was followed by an adjourned return match, where Stephen leads 5-3.
And in the Red Division Mike Smith and George Georgiou were the victors.
Mike's narrow win over Neil Young was an al fresco affair in the sunshine outside the Arnolfini, while George's win came at the expense of Ismail Yilmaz at the club.
Meanwhile one third round Brunel Trophy match has been resolved without dice being rolled.
Derek Clew's unavailability has signalled a free pass to round four for Simonetta Herrera.
In the DMP Tourno it was Simonetta who prevailed, winning seven of eight games to become the inaugural leader of the Summer Grand Prix.

13/05/18: Sunday afternoon Premier League action

There were three Premier League matches played on Sunday afternoon.
A Premier One double header at the Cat and Wheel saw Jason Champion score a brace of victories over Paul Watts to move out of the bottom four.
And the Shakespeare, Totterdown, was the venue for Adam Sinclair to gain his latest Premier Two Red victory.
His 11-8 win over Neil Young extends his lead to fifteen points.

11/05/18: Jon's league win

Jon Organ and James Timoney met for a Premier Three fixture at the Rainbow Casino on Friday.
Jon won 11-3.

11/05/18: Alex wins May grand prix tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty-two players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, including the eighteen who contested the fifth of this year's series of monthly Bristol Grand Prix tournaments.
Three Premier Two matches and one from the third round of the Brunel Trophy were also completed.
In the Blue Division there were wins for Daniel Eldridge and Tim Line, over Peter Thistlewood and Drew Caudwell respectively, maintaining the promotion hopes of the victors.
And in the parallel Red Division Chris Hughes scored a win over Pearl Foster.
After the tournament Tim also kept his Brunel Trophy hopes alive by beating Ian Tarr, who also has one life remaining.
In the tournament Alex Hodge was one of the unlucky four not to receive a bye.
He made light of this, however, eliminating Fred North, Steve Morris, Ian and Adam Sinclair, before overcoming Chris Rogers in the final.
Chris had made it to the final via wins over Jordan White, Simonetta Herrera and Stephen Little.
Cynthia Roberts won the consolation flight, beating Richard Owsley, Roland Herrera and Fred.
Alex takes over the leadership of the Bristol Grand Prix, moving 25 points clear of previous leader Ian.

09/05/18: George scores Red Division victory over Chris

George Georgiou and Chris Hughes met for a Premier Two Red fixture at the Rainbow Casino this evening.
And George scored an 11-10 win.

09/05/18: League wins for Phil and James

Three Premier League matches were played on Tuesday.
In Premier Three John Curran and James Lintell-Smith met at the Westbury Park Tavern, and James edged to victory.
And later at the King William IV Phil Charlton had much the better of a Premier Two Blue double header against Simon Hughes to haul himself off the bottom of the league.

06/05/18: Sunday action

Three matches were played on Sunday.
In the Brunel Trophy Chris Hughes visited Mike Smith in St Werburghs.
Mike won the match, so both players go into round four with a single life remaining.
And at the Rainbow Casino John Curran and Carwyn Jenkins played out a Premier Three double header.
Carwyn won both matches and moves to the top of the division.

04/05/18: Kingswood double for James

The Warwick Arms, Kingswood, today became the latest new venue for Bristol Backgammon when James Lintell-Smith and Matt Robson met for a Premier Three double header.
James won both matches.

04/05/18: Tony wins GP30 event

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty-two players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, including the sixteen who contested the third of this year's series of eight GP30 tournaments.
Those sixteen constituted a record equalling turnout for this competition.
Two third round Brunel Trophy ties were played.
Chris Rogers defeated Marcus Evans to stay in the competition, both players going into the fourth round draw with one life remaining.
But Jim Green's defeat by Simon Hughes signalled the end of his interest for another year, while Simon retains two lives.
Five Premier Two matches were completed.
In the Blue Division Daniel Eldridge suffered mixed fortunes with a victory over Peter Thistlewood and a defeat at the hands of Phil Charlton.
For Phil it was also a case of swings and roundabouts, as he lost narrowly to Stephen Little in a previously adjourned match.
Meanwhile, in the parallel Red Division the victors were Richard Owsley and Cliff Blofield, over Ismail Yilmaz and Chris Hughes respectively.
Richard's win was his fifth successive league success.
In the GP30 event, it was Tony Walters who emerged victorious.
His victims were Marcus, Tim Line, Chris Hughes and -- in the final -- Adam Sinclair.
Adam had beaten Simon, Chris Rogers and Cliff en route to the final.
Gaz Owen won the consolation flight with wins over Steve Morris, Stephen Little and Marcus.
Simonetta Herrera, who won the first two events in this series, had a blank evening but still heads the GP30 table by 70 points from second placed Tony.

01/05/18: Cecilia and Simon share the spoils

Two players emerging as real title contenders -- Simon Baker and Cecilia Sparke -- met for a Premier One double header at the Rainbow Casino on Tuesday.
Cecilia won the opener 11-6, but Simon took his revenge in the return, winning 11-8.

01/05/18: George and Mathew take Spring Grand Prix titles

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fourteen players in action on Monday, including twelve at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom eleven contested the final phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of 3-point round robins.
At the Hole in the Wall Cecilia Sparke scored a brace of victories over Steffen Nowak in Premier One.
And pre-tournament Stephen Little defeated Neil Young in the third round of the Brunel Trophy.
Neil has one life remaining, Stephen two.
In the advertised event Roland Herrera won the six player group outright, while George Georgiou and Simonetta Herrera split the pot in the five player group.
This result was enough to confirm that George staved off Simonetta's challenge for the SGP title.
Mathew Nicholls had long since done enough to ensure that he was the competition's top intermediate.

29/04/18: Ian wins again

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eleven players in action on Sunday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the fourth of this year's series of Sunday tournaments.
And Ian Tarr won his second tournament in four days.
After benefiting from a first round bye he defeated Alex Hodge and George Georgiou, before beating Chris Rogers in the final.
Chris had got past Eric McAlpine, Cecilia Sparke and Gaz Owen to reach the final.
Adam Sinclair took the consolation flight with wins over Stephen Little and Richard Owsley.

27/04/18: Friday action

Two matches were played on Friday.
In the third round of the Brunel Trophy Dave Pym and Ed Turner met at the Rainbow Casino -- a battle between two players unbeaten thus far in the competition.
It was Ed who preserved his record, leaving Dave with one life remaining to take into the fourth round.
And there was a rare Bristol Conference League match at the Coach and Horses.
Jim Green remained in pole position with an 11-1 victory over Mathew Nicholls.

27/04/18: Ian wins Speedgammon event

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eighteen players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, including the twelve who contested the third of our series of eight Speedgammon Grand Prix tournaments.
Four Premier Two matches were completed, plus one of the third round Brunel Trophy matches.
That Brunel match saw Ian Hedges scoring a victory over Paul Watts which means that both players have one life remaining.
Earlier Ian had won a Premier Two Blue meeting with Phil Charlton.
In the same division Simon Hughes defeated Steve Morris.
In the Red Division Cliff Blofield and Richard Owsley fought out a double header, Richard winning both matches to continue his recovery from a slow start to the season.
The Speedgammon event featured three round robins of four players.
Gaz Owen and Simon won all three matches in their groups to progress to the final phase, while the other group saw Ian Tarr edging out Adam Sinclair on points difference after both players had won two out of three matches.
Gaz had the best record of the three, so progressed straight to the final.
Ian pipped Simon in the semi-final, and then outrolled Gaz to take the final.
He takes over as leader of the SGGP table.

25/04/18: League wins for Alex and Ismail

Wednesday's Premier League action consisted of just two matches.
In the top flight Alex Hodge swapped league places with Gaz Owen when he scored an 11-5 victory at the Rainbow Casino.
And in Premier Two Red Ismail Yilmaz defeated Chris Hughes 11-6 at the Lock Keeper.

25/04/18: Alex stays in Brunel Trophy

The Summerhouse pub in Worle, Weston-super-Mare, became the latest new venue for Bristol Backgammon yesterday, when Tom Chapman and Alex Hodge met for their third round Brunel Trophy match.
Alex won convincingly, and both players will have one life remaining when they go into the fourth round draw.

24/04/18: Chris extends Premier One lead

In a double header at the Rainbow casino today Chris Rogers and Fred North won one match apiece.
Chris's Premier One lead has been extended to nine points, although his closest rivals all have matches in hand.

24/04/18: Daniel and Miles exit Brunel Trophy

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fifteen players in action on Monday, including the nine who contested the penultimate phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a Tric Trac Tourno -- at the Bristol County Sports Club.
The first two third round Brunel Trophy matches were completed.
And this signalled the elimination from the tournament of Daniel Eldridge and Miles Farren.
Daniel succumbed to Cecilia Sparke at the Phoenix, while Miles suffered defeat at the hands of Nick Barham at the Rainbow Casino.
And at an as yet unspecified venue Damian Thomson and Jordan White made their Conference League debuts, Jordan winning 11-7.
The Tric Trac Tourno was won convincingly by Roland Herrera.
George Georgiou did enough to extend his SGP lead over second placed Simonetta Herrera to 26 points, a handy cushion with just one session remaining.

22/04/18: Chris tops Premier One

Chris Rogers and Paul Watts met at the Rainbow Casino today for a Premier One double header.
And the brace of narrow wins Chris achieved were enough to move him to the summit of the league.

20/04/18: Honours even for Ed and Cliff

In a Premier Two Red double header at the Old Fish Market today, it was a case of spoils shared between Ed Turner and Cliff Blofield.
Ed shaded the first 11-9, before Cliff won even more narrowly in the return.

20/04/18: Knock-out wins for Chris and Adam

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eighteen players in action on Thursday, including seventeen at the Rainbow Casino, fourteen of whom contested the third of our series of nine Handicap Trophy tournaments.
Seven Premier Two matches were completed, and the final of last week's Monthly Grand Prix tournament was also played.
In that final Chris Rogers defeated Simon Hughes, thus dashing the hopes of the neutrals, who were hoping for a Winner Takes All pool double rollover.
In Premier Two Blue Ian Hedges and Tim Line were the busiest.
The pair began with a double header where Tim came out on top twice.
Ian then played out a further double header, sharing the spoils with league leader Rufus Rozelaar.
Tim later succumbed to Steve Morris.
In the parallel Red Division Ed Turner scored two victories to haul himself clear of bottom spot.
His victory over Pearl Foster at Brimsham Park was followed by the conclusion of an adjourned match against divisional leader Adam Sinclair, who suffered a rare Premier Two defeat.
Adam did, however, have the consolation of winning the advertised event, defeating Richard Owsley, Cynthia Roberts and Tim before despatching Steve in the final.
Steve's victims were Ed and Alex Hodge.
Cecilia Sparke won the consolation flight with victories over Daniel Eldridge, Nick Barham and Stephen Little.
Adam took over the mantle of Handicap Trophy leader, aided by the fact that the top four players going into the event were all absent.

19/04/18: Wednesday league action

Three Premier League matches were played on Wednesday, all at the Rainbow Casino.
Andrew Cobb and Rufus Rozelaar met for a double header, and Premier Two Blue leader Rufus scored a brace of wins.
And the first action in Premier Three for a while saw Jon Organ score an 11-9 victory over Matt Robson.

18/04/18: Cecilia wins at the Hole in the Wall

The latest new venue for Bristol Backgammon is the Hole in the Wall.
Stuart Mann and Cecilia Sparke met there yesterday for a Premier One match, and Cecilia was the winner, 11-5.

18/04/18: George and Adam win Nackgammon Tournos

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were nine players in action on Monday at the Bristol County Sports Club to contest the fourteenth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of Nackgammon Tournos.
George Georgiou edged the five player group, while Adam Sinclair won the four player group.
George has moved into the lead over Simonetta Herrera in the SGP table by fourteen points, withg just two sessions remaining.
He has also consolidated his Nackgammon Grand Prix lead, with a 26 points cushion over Adam Sinclair.
Mathew Nicholls can no longer be caught in the race to be the SGP's top intermediate.

15/04/18: Weekend league round-up

Five Premier League matches were played over the weekend.
Brookhouse Farm, Swindon, was the venue for a Friday Premier One meeting between Fred North and Gary Plant.
Gary won 11-9.
In the same division on Sunday Andy Boysan and Paul Watts played a double header, where the spoils were shared.
And in a Premier Two Red double header at the Old Fish Market Adam Sinclair scored a brace of wins over Cliff Blofield to extend his comfortable league lead.

13/04/18: Third round Brunel Trophy draw

The draw for the third round of the Brunel Trophy can be found here.
With an odd number of survivors, there had to be a bye.
This was decided by a draw from the eight players who were undefeated whose opponents' records were the best.
George Georgiou was the lucky recipient.
There are just two ties where both players are assured of a place in round four.
Conversely there are two "sudden death" ties.
Round four could feature anything between fifteen and twenty-three players.

13/04/18: Chris and Simon to contest April Bristol Grand Prix final

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were sixteen players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, fourteen of whom contested the fourth of our series of twelve Bristol Grand Prix tournaments.
The last of the second round Brunel Trophy matches was done and dusted in the afternoon, with Simon Baker beating Cynthia Roberts, thus ending her involvement in this double elimination event.
The draw for the third round was made late on Thursday evening by Alex Hodge, and will appear on the website shortly.
Two Premier Two Red matches were played before the tournament.
League leader Adam Sinclair survived a scare when his match against Ismail Yilmaz went down to the very last roll at DMP.
And in a similarly close encounter Richard Owsley pipped Simonetta Herrera.
Chris Rogers and Simon Hughes came through to the main flight final of the evening's main event, and will doubtless contest this soon.
Neutrals will be hoping that Simon can succeed, and in so doing preserve the two Winner Takes All pools for a tasty May rollover.
Chris defeated Ian Hedges, Tony Walters and Steve Morris to reach the final, while Simon's route took him past Alex, Simonetta and Gaz Owen.
Alex took the consolation flight, defeating Adam and Cynthia Roberts, before benefitting from a timely double shot in the bear off at DMP against Ian Tarr in the final.
Ian Tarr has edged into the lead in the BGP table moving five points ahead of Roland Herrera, with Simonetta in third.

13/04/18: Apologies to Alex

In the story on 10/04/18 below about Alex Hodge's exceptional Bristol Masters record, there was an error!
Alex has in fact only contested three Masters tournaments, although he did qualify for a fourth but declined his place.
That makes his record in this competition all the more remarkable, since he has never been defeated in a Masters match.
That's a run of twelve matches unbeaten in Bristol Backgammon's toughest domestic tournament.
Apologies are due to Alex for the error.

11/04/18: Jason and Hugh eliminated from Brunel Trophy

There were six matches played on Wednesday.
In the Brunel Trophy two more players lost their second lives, so will not feature in tomorrow's third round draw.
Jason Champion, hosting Paul Watts in Hurlingham Road, went down 3-11, while Hugh Swann, who met Stephen Little at the Marlborough Tavern, Bath, lost 4-11.
That leaves just one of the second round matches to be played -- Simon Baker and Cynthia Roberts meet tomorrow evening.
Both Premier One and Premier Two Blue saw double headers completed.
In the top flight the venue was the Star and Dove, and it was here that Steffen Nowak twice defeated Gary Plant, thus moving himself out of the bottom four.
And in the Blue Division it was Simon Hughes who twice defeated Dave Pym at the Rainbow Casino.

10/04/18: Alex is first three time Masters winner

The held over final of the eighteenth Bristol Masters was played at the Rainbow Casino this evening.
And Alex Hodge's 9-4 victory over Paul Watts made him the first player in the history of the event to win the title three times.
Not a bad effort for someone who has only qualified for the event four times!
There was also a Premier One double header at the Wellington, where Jason Champion defeated Gary Plant 11-2 and 11-10 to haul himself out of the bottom four.

10/04/18: Stephen, Simonetta and Drew take Monday pots

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were sixteen players in action on Monday, including twelve at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom eleven contested the thirteenth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of 3-point round robins.
Four other matches were concluded, two of them in the second round of the Brunel Trophy.
At the Globe, Newton St Loe, Tim Line defeated James Lintell-Smith, while Tom Chapman was beating Steve Cox at the Rainbow Casino.
Both James and Steve were losing their second lives, so they are eliminated.
Pearl Foster hauled herself away from bottom place in Premier Two Red with an 11-7 victory over George Georgiou.
And in the parallel Blue Division Stephen Little picked up where he left off in an adjourned match against Drew Caudwell, converting an 8-1 lead into an 11-1 victory.
In the advertised event, which was preceded by a Roland Herrera teach-in, the six player group saw the pot shared between Drew and Simonetta Herrera, while Stephen scooped the pot in the five player group.
There was another welcome debut, Rick Harper -- another from the "Beaufort School" -- taking the plunge into round robin action.
Simonetta is now in a very strong position to take the SGP title, with a lead of 29 points, discards having an ever greater impact, and only three sessions remaining.
Mathew looks nailed on to be the competition's top intermediate, and he also heads the January to June 3-point round robin section of the Roland Herrera and John Curran intermediate sponsorhip by quite a margin.

09/04/18: Cliff wins Weston double header

The Brunello Lounge in Weston-super-Mare played host to a Premier Two Red double header yesterday.
The protagonists were Cliff Blofield and Tom Chapman, and Cliff won both matches to move into fourth place in the division.

08/04/18: Jim wins in St Werburghs

Jim Green visited Mike Smith in St Werburghs today and came away with a crucial Brunel Trophy victory.
Both players will feature in Thursday's third round draw with a single life remaining.

07/04/18: Adam out of Brunel

Two Brunel Trophy results from Wednesday which slipped through the net were victories for Dave Pym and George Georgiou.
Dave's defeat of Adam Sinclair at the Bristol County Sports Club signalled the end of Adam's involvement in this year's competition.
Whereas Steve Morris lives to fight another day after losing to George at the Rainbow Casino.

06/04/18: Paul and Alex to contest Bristol Masters final

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty-one players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, sixteen of whom contested the eighteenth annual Bristol Masters tournament.
The event, which is effectively a Bristol Backgammon "Champion of Champions" tournament, is contested by sixteen players who have notable achievements under their belts during the previous year.
The majority of players accept their places with alacrity, but for various reasons Fred North, John Curran and the forgetful Jason Champion did not, allowing Ian Tarr, Adam Sinclair and Daniel Eldridge back door entries.
As is often the case the final was held back for another time -- Alex Hodge and Paul Watts being the protagonists.
Alex, winner of the event in 2014 and 2015, defeated Cecilia Sparke, Stephen Little and Ian Hedges to reach the final.
Paul, the 2016 winner, had to get past Adam Sinclair, Roland Herrera and Stuart Mann.
Before the tournament there were two Brunel Trophy matches played, Miles Farren and Neil Young scoring victories over Simonetta Herrera and Chris Rogers respectively.
Both Simonetta and Chris have one life remaining.
There was also Premier Two action.
Simon Hughes continued his recovery from a slow start, defeating Stephen in a Premier Two Blue encounter.
Simonetta also lost a Premier Two Red match -- comprehensively to Richard Owsley, who moves off the bottom of the league.
And runaway Red Division leader Adam consolidated his position with a win over Ian Tarr.

04/04/18: Mandy is latest Brunel Trophy casualty

The latest player to be eliminated from the Brunel Trophy is Mandy Macdonald.
Her defeat by Cecilia Sparke at the Shakespeare, Prince Street, was her second and last of this year's competition.

04/04/18: Gaz eliminated from Brunel Trophy

There were two matches played on Tuesday.
In the Brunel Trophy Gaz Owen has become the latest player to be eliminated, losing his second life after a 6-11 reverse at the hands of Chris Hughes at the Old Plough.
And in Premier Two Red Neil Young defeated Pearl Foster 11-4 at the Bristol County Sports Club.

01/04/18: Eight penalised at first Premier League checkpoint

The March 31st midnight checkpoint -- the first of the season -- passed with no player expungements, but eight players receiving penalties, which will hopefully all be clawed back at the May checkpoint.
In Premier One Jason Champion and Cecilia Sparke have incurred two penalty points apiece, while Neil Young and Tom Chapman of Premier One Red picked up two and one penalties respectively.
Phil Charlton is the only player penalised in Premier Two Blue, being docked three points.
And three players in Premier Three are also penalised -- Jon Organ and Matt Robson (two each), and James Timoney (one).

01/04/18: Stephen wins Sunday tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eleven players in action on Sunday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the third of the year's ten Rainbow Sunday tournaments.
The event was won by Stephen Little who got past Alex Hodge and Ian Tarr before defeating Tony Walters in the final.
Tony had beaten Drew Caudwell and Gaz Owen en route to the final.
The consolation was won by Cliff Blofield, who beat George Devlin, Julian Fetterlein and Alex to win the flight.

31/03/18: Jason and Richard suffer defeats

There were five Premier League matches played over Friday and Saturday.
All of those involved either Jason Champion in Premier One or Richard Owsley in Premier Two Red.
But neither player was able to muster a single victory.
On Friday at the Pipe and Slippers Jason lost a close one to Cecilia Sparke, while on Saturday he hosted Andy Boysan in a losing double header.
For Richard the setbacks were against Pearl Foster at the Rainbow Casino on Friday and Ian Tarr at the Rose of Denmark on Saturday.

30/03/18: Mathew wins at the Beaufort

In a Conference League match at the Beaufort Arms today Mathew Nicholls scored an 11-6 win over Andrew Gay.

30/03/18: Chris wins GP5 tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were seventeen players in action on Thursday at the Rainbow Casino, including the sixteen who contested the third of the year's nine GP5 tournaments.
There were two Brunel Trophy matches and just one Premier League match played, a Blue Division clash between Stephen Little and Rufus Rozelaar.
For the second successive day, league leader Rufus lost 10-11.
Daniel Eldridge and Derek Clew were the Brunel winners, thus preserving their final life.
For their victims, the outcome differed.
Derek's foe Ian Hedges also has one life remaining, but it was curtains for Richard Owsley, Daniel's opponent.
Chris Rogers won the GP5 event, defeating Cecilia Sparke, Stephen Little and Derek, before getting the better of in the final.
Nick had beaten Richard, visiting London player Jysen Quah, and Cynthia Roberts on the way to the final.
Alex Hodge won the consolation flight with victories over Daniel, Ian and Richard.
Nick takes over the leadership of the GP5 table, and is 20 points ahead of Adam Sinclair and Steve Morris.

28/03/18: Alex goes second

There were five Premier League matches played on Wednesday.
In the top flight Alex Hodge and Steffen Nowak met for a double header at the Rainbow Casino.
And two emphatic wins for Alex have pushed him up to second in the league.
Ian Tarr played two Premier Two Red matches and encountered mixed fortunes.
His meeting with Pearl Foster at the casino ended in an 11-4 victory, but he later suffered a 10-11 defeat at the Compass at the hands of Cliff Blofield.
And in the parallel Blue Division leader Rufus Rozelaar was edged out 11-10 by Simon Hughes.

27/03/18: Red Division win for Chris

Chris Hughes and Ed Turner met for a Premier Two Red encounter this evening.
Chris won the match at the Bristol County Sports Club 11-6.

26/03/18: Roland and Steffen out of Brunel Trophy

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fifteen players in action on Monday, including thirteen at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom eleven contested the twelfth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a DMP Tourno.
Apart from the advertised event, there were two Brunel Trophy matches and one from Premier Two Red played.
Roland Herrera and Steffen Nowak became the latest players to exit the Brunel Trophy.
Roland was defeated by Marcus Evans at the club, while Steffen's demise came at the Star and Dove, courtesy of Ed Turner.
And at the Compass Cliff Blofield scored a Red Division victory over Pearl Foster.
In the DMP Tourno the pot was shared by Simonetta Herrera and Stephen Little, who each won eight out of ten games.
Simonetta is the new SGP leader, albeit by a very narrow margin, taking over from George Gworgiou.

25/03/18: Five league matches and five winners on Sunday

In a Premier One double header at the Rainbow Casino this afternoon it was honours more or less even between Paul Watts and Simon Baker.
Paul won the opener 11-3 before Simon's 11-4 win in the return.
It was also a case of spoils shared at the Lock Keeper, where Chris Hughes and Mike Smith met in Premier Two Red.
Mike won ths first match 11-5, but Chris struck back with an 11-7 win.
And the Royal Oak, Twerton, Bath, became another new Bristol Backgammon venue when John Curran and James Timoney met in Premier Three, James winning 11-6.

25/03/18: Alex wins GP30 consolation

Alex Hodge defeated Roland Herrera yesterday at Kellaway Avenue in the held over final of Thursday's GP30 consolation flight.

23/03/18: Stuart returns the compliment

Just three days after Simon Baker's recovery from 4-10 in arrears to Stuart Mann at the Bridge Inn, Yatton, the tables were turned today in a remarkable near mirror image.
This time, at the same venue, Stuart was 5-10 down and came back to win, thus ending Premier One's last unbeaten record.
And the three points also hauled Stuart from the foot of the league table to a position outside the bottom four.

23/03/18: Another tournament win for Simonetta

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were seventeen players in action on Thursday, including fifteen at the Rainbow Casino, of whom twelve contested the second of the year's eight GP30 tournaments.
Seven Premier League matches were played.
In Premier One Chris Rogers suffered a double blow to his title chances when he lost 3-11 and 5-11 to Simon Baker.
That makes four wins out of four for Simon so far.
Steve Morris and Andrew Cobb each registered two victories in Premier Two Blue.
Simon Hughes and Stephen Little were Steve's victims -- Stephen after resuming a previously adjourned match at 8-8 -- while Mandy Macdonald suffered twice at Andrew's hands at the Knights Templar.
In the same division Daniel Eldridge defeated Phil Charlton 11-2.
In the advertised event it was Simonetta Herrera who emerged victorious from the field of twelve, adding to her litany of wins in what is a very good year for her so far.
Her vanquished adversaries were Simon Baker, Cynthia Roberts, Gaz Owen and -- in the final -- Chris Hughes.
Chris had received a bye in the first round, before defeating Alex Hodge and Ian Tarr.
Roland Herrera and Alex deferred their consolation flight final, probably until the weekend.
As Simonetta has won both GP30 events so far, her lead has stretched to 110 points, which, even at this early stage, suggests that she will take some catching.

21/03/18: Wednesday round-up

Four Premier Two matches and one Brunel Trophy second round tie were played on Wednesday.
In the Brunel Trophy a Weston-super-Mare derby saw Alex Hodge defeat reigning champion Nick Barham at the Old Colonial, leaving both players with a single life remaining when they play in round three.
Peter Thistlewood visited Andrew Cobb at the Rose and Crown for a Premier Two Blue double header, and Peter ended his sequence of defeats in style with 11-5 and 11-4 victories.
Ian Tarr played two Premier Two Red matches.
His 11-8 afternoon win over Neil Young at the Shakespeare, Totterdown, was followed by a 9-11 defeat at the hands of Ed Turner at the Bristol County Sports Club.

20/03/18: Tuesday Premier League action

Four Premier League matches were played on Tuesday.
In the top flight there were victories for Simon Baker and Cecilia Sparke.
Simon staged a dramatic recovery at the Bridge Inn, Yatton, where he trailed 4-10 to Stuart Mann before edging home.
And Cecilia defeated Alex Hodge 11-8 at the Rainbow Casino.
Mike Smith consolidated his second position in Premier Two Red when he beat Pearl Foster at the Compass.
And James Timoney scored a maiden Premier League victory, defeating James Lintell-Smith 11-8 at a new venue for Bristol Backgammon, the Kings Head, Chitterne.

20/03/18: Adam suffers first league defeat

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fourteen players in action on Monday, including twelve at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom ten contested the eleventh phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of five player 3-point round robins.
Premier Two Red was the focus of the day's league action, with four results.
League leader Adam Sinclair added to his opening run of wins against Mike Smith at the Brewhouse and Kitchen, but Mike struck back to stop Adam's sequence at eight.
And Neil Young got two matches in, with mixed fortunes -- a 4-11 defeat by George Georgiou being followed by an 11-7 victory over Ed Turner.
The round robins saw nobody with an unblemished record.
Simonetta Herrera and Mathew Nicholls scored three wins apiece to share one pot, while Daniel Eldridge's three victories were enough to scoop the pot in the other group.
Simonetta has narrowed George's SGP lead to 22 points, while Mathew now has a commanding lead in both the race to be the event's top intermediate and the 3-point round robin section of the Roland Herrera and John Curran intermediate sponsorship.

18/03/18: League wins for Chris and John

Chris Hughes and Ian Tarr braved the elements to meet for a Premier Two Red match at the Brass Mill today.
And Chris was the 11-4 winner.
Also venturing out in the cold were John Curran and James Timoney, whose Premier Three match ended 11-10 in John's favour.

18/03/18: Mike's double success

Two Premier League matches were played on Sunday.
They formed a Premier Two Red double header at Kellaway Avenue, where visiting Mike Smith inflicted a pair of defeats on second placed Simonetta Herrera.

16/03/18: League wins for Adam and Chris

Two Premier League matches were played on Friday.
At the Fox Den a seventeen game match ended with an 11-10 victory for Adam Sinclair over Pearl Foster in Premier Two Red.
And the Rainbow Casino was the venue for Chris Rogers's 11-3 Premier One defeat of Alex Hodge.

16/03/18: Nick takes March Speedgammon honours

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were nineteen players in action on Thursday, including seventeen at the Rainbow Casino, of whom nine contested the second of the year's eight Speedgammon Grand Prix tournaments.
Nine Premier League matches were played.
In Premier One Nick Barham scored a much needed win over Chris Rogers.
Steve Morris, in Premier Two Blue, was another to make up ground, defeating Mandy Macdonald and Peter Thistlewood.
In the same division Phil Charlton and Tim Line shared the spoils of a double header.
The parallel Red Division saw Mike Smith score a brace of wins over Richard Owsley, while Pearl Foster gained her first league win of the season at the expense of Simonetta Herrera.
And Steve Cox beat John Curran at Thingwall Park in Premier Three.
The Speedgammon saw the field split into a group of five players and a group of four.
Nick won the smaller group outright, while the larger group was a much closer affair, Roland Herrera gaining the decisive extra victory when a five way tie -- albeit not on points difference -- looked a distinct possibility.
The play-off between the group winners was then won by Nick.
Simonetta's SGGP lead is extended to 25 points.

14/03/18: Andy out of Brunel Trophy

At the Alma Tavern this evening Andy Boysan became the latest player to be eliminated from the Brunel Trophy when he was defeated by Ian Tarr.

13/03/18: Premier One win for Alex

In a Premier One match at the Rainbow Casino on Tuesday Alex Hodge defeated Andy Boysan 11-7.

13/03/18: Drew first to exit Brunel Trophy

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were thirteen players in action on Monday, including eleven at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom nine contested the tenth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a Tric Trac Tourno.
Drew Caudwell and Simon Hughes decided to double up a Premier Two Blue match as a Brunel Trophy match.
And it was Simon who came through 11-8, preserving both of his Brunel Trophy lives while extinguishing Drew's last hope and making him the first of the 38 starters to exit the double elimination year long event.
James Timoney made his Premier Three debut, and now all 46 Premier League players are safely under way.
He was defeated 8-11 by Steve Cox at Thingwall Park.
In the Tric Trac Tourno the pot was shared by George Georgiou and Simonetta Herrera, the latter player doubling her points tally with a backgammon in her final game.
George now has a 42 points lead over Simonetta in the SGP table.
Mathew Nicholls extended his lead in the race to finish as the competition's leading intermediate.

11/03/18: League wins for Paul and Carwyn

Six Premier League matches were played at the Rainbow Casino on Sunday.
In the top flight champion Nick Barham suffered a double blow to his title defence, losing twice to Paul Watts.
And in Premier Three Carwyn Jenkins stormed to the top of the league by defeating Steve Cox, James Lintell-Smith and Jon Organ.
Steve also registered a win over James.

09/03/18: Brunel Trophy second round draw made

Brunel TrophyThe draw for the second round of Bristol Backgammon's richest tournament, the Brunel Trophy, was made late on Thursday evening by Simonetta Herrera.
All thirty-eight starters are, of course, still there, although it's anybody's guess how many will survive this round.
No fewer than fifteen of the nineteen ties feature one player with two lives against a player with just one, so there could be anything between twenty-one and thirty-six players in round three.
Matches are to be completed in time for the third round draw, which will be made on Thursday April 12th.

09/03/18: Roland takes March Grand Prix tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty players in action on Thursday, including eighteen at the Rainbow Casino, seventeen of whom contested the third of the year's twelve Bristol Monthly Grand Prix tournaments.
Amongst the field, there was a Bristol Backgammon debut for Jordan White, and a rare visit from Maltese resident Jerry Limb, who had last contested one of our events back in September 2012.
Four and a half league matches -- all in Premier Two Blue -- were played, as well as the nineteenth and last match of the first round of the Brunel Trophy.
In the Blue Division it was Tim Line's day, as he registered three victories -- two against Peter Thistlewood and one over Mandy Macdonald.
Stephen Little was the other victor, edging home against Steve Morris, before adjourning the return at 8-8.
The Brunel Trophy match, at the Cross Hands, saw Simon Baker defeat Derek Clew.
In the tournament it was Roland Herrera who came through matches against Steve Morris, Rufus Rozelaar and Ian Tarr, before beating Adam Sinclair in the final.
Jerry took the consolation flight with wins over Mandy, Jason Champion and Daniel Eldridge.
Roland is the new leader of the BGP table, with Ian close behind.
In the Winner Takes All pools Roland took the 10 version, while the comparative lack of investment in the 20 pool means a rollover of 100 to the April tournament.

06/03/18: Tuesday action

Dave Pym may not have been too quick getting his Premier Two season under way, but he has more than made up for that.
His eleventh and twelfth matches in a thirteen day period were played today at the Rose and Crown, and his brace of wins over Andrew Cobb have brought him into the promotion picture.
Meanwhile the latest players to lose Brunel Trophy lives are Drew Caudwell, whose luck was completely out against Ian Tarr at the Post Office Tavern, and Steffen Nowak, who lost to Steve Morris at the Rainbow Casino.

06/03/18: Dave nets three wins

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were seventeen players in action on Monday, including twelve at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom ten contested the ninth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of Nackgammon Tournos.
Dave Pym got in three matches -- two in Premier Two Blue and one in the Brunel Trophy -- and he managed to win all three, scoring a league double over Peter Thistlewood at the Blaise Inn before defeating Jim Green in the Brunel at the Rainbow Casino.
There was more league action at the Fox Den, where Adam Sinclair continued the winning start to his Premier Two Red campaign at Pearl Foster's expense.
The Nackgammon Tournos were won by George Georgiou and Adam.
George is now 32 points ahead of Simonetta Herrera in the SGP, while Mathew Nicholls has taken over from Stelios Choustoulakis as the leader in the competition's intermediates race.
George also heads the standings in the Drew Caudwell sponsored Nackgammon Grand Prix.

04/03/18: Brunel wins for Ed and Chris; league win for Matt

Ed Turner defeated Jason Champion today in a first round Brunel Trophy match at the Cat and Wheel.
And in the same competition the Compass, Tormarton, was the venue for Chris Hughes's win over Hugh Swann.
Steve Cox played host to Matt Robson at Thingwall Park in Premier Three, where Matt was the victor.

03/03/18: Chris wins Brunel Trophy match

In a first round Brunel Trophy match yesterday Chris Rogers defeated Cynthia Roberts.

03/03/18: Ian makes the most of his handicap

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were ten players present at the Rainbow Casino on Thursday, nine of whom contested the second of the year's nine Handicap Trophy tournaments.
Ten may not seem like a good turnout, but considering the appalling weather conditions, the hardiness of Bristol Backgammon's players seemed more like something to celebrate.
The other match played was at the sharp end of Premier One, where Chris Rogers egded home 11-9 against reigning champion Nick Barham.
In the tournament Ian Anderson made the most of his handicap of 3, taking the tournament after beating Ed Turner, Simonetta Herrera and Daniel Eldridge.
Ian Tarr won the consolation flight, getting past Ed and Roland Herrera.
Ian Anderson moves into second place in the Handicap Trophy table, just fifteen points behind January tournament winner Gaz Owen.

01/03/18: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday action

Wednesday......

In a double header at the Rose and Crown, Larkhall, Ian Hedges and Andrew Cobb shared the Premier Two Blue spoils.
And Marcus Evans defeated Miles Farren at the Albion, Clifton in the Brunel Trophy.

Tuesday......

saw Stuart Mann finally kick start his Premier One campaign by defeating Steffen Nowak at the Star and Dove, but not before Steffen had inflicted a defeat on Stuart.

Monday......

and Daniel Eldridge became the latest player to stand in for Director Ian Tarr in his absence. How lucky we are that we have so many players capable of standing in in such circumstances.
Four Premier Two Blue matches were played -- two double headers.
One, at the Rainbow Casino, saw Rufus Rozelaar regain top spot with a brace of wins over Dave Pym, while the other, at the club, saw a double for Drew Caudwell over Steve Morris.
And there were Brunel Trophy wins for Tom Chapman, over Roland Herrera, and Simon Hughes, against Adam Sinclair.
Nine players -- split into groups of four and five -- contested the latest phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix, 3-ppoint round robins.
Thew five player group was won outright by Mathew Nicholls, while the other group saw the pot split between Nick Barham and Adam.
George Georgiou is the new SGP leader, just ahead of Simonetta Herrera.
An additional DMP Tourno was split between Adam and Ian Anderson.

25/02/18: Simonetta wins Sunday tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were just eight players present at the Rainbow Casino on Sunday to contest the second of the year's ten Sunday knock-out tournaments.
Among the field was Ian Anderson, a visitor from Scotland, making his Bristol Backgammon debut.
Simonetta Herrera maintained her hot streak of recent form to win the main flight, defeating Alex Hodge, Chris Rogers and Adam Sinclair.
Adam's route to the final took him past Tim Line and Ian.
Ed Turner won the consolation flight.
And Cecilia Sparke defeated Tim in the first round of the Brunel Trophy.

25/02/18: Friday round-up

There were five Premier League matches and one in the Brunel Trophy completed on Friday.
Stuart Mann's winless start to the Premier One season continued at the Bridge Inn, Yatton, where Gary Plant won 11-5.
The other four league matches all involved Dave Pym in Premier Two Blue.
The first of his double headers saw him twice lose narrowly to Mandy Macdonald at Grounded in Bedminster.
While the second, at the casino, saw him share the spoils with Daniel Eldridge, who goes top.
The Brunel match involved Andy Boysan and Mike Smith, who met at the Alma Tavern.
Mike was the winner.

25/02/18: Steve wins GP5 event

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were seventeen players present at the Rainbow Casino on Thursday, of whom twelve contested the second of the year's nine GP5 tournaments.
Apart from the tournament, five other matches were completed.
In the first round of the Brunel Trophy Ian Hedges came from a long way behind to defeat James Lintell-Smith.
In Premier Two Blue Steve Morris defeated leader Rufus Rozelaar, while Dave Pym began his campaign with a brace of wins against Tim Line.
And Jim Green made a fine league debut to go top of the Conference League, defeating previous leader Thomas Preece.
The tournament was the first of two to be directed by Tim in Ian Tarr's continued absence, and featured a Bristol Backgammon debut for Giles Ashton, last spotted as a BIBA entrant back in 2002.
Steve continued in a winning vein, sweeping all before him to win the tournament.
His victims were Roland Herrera, Tim, Simonetta Herrera and, in the final, Nick Barham.
Nick had progressed via a bye and wins over Daniel Eldridge and Alex Hodge.
Roland won the consolation flight, defeating Richard Owsley, Daniel and Adam Sinclair.
Adam's GP5 lead has been halved to 25 points, with Steve now in second place.

21/02/18: Tuesday league news

There were three Premier League matches played on Tuesday.
In Premier One Chris Rogers and Alex Hodge scored victories.
Chris's win came at the expense of Andy Boysan at the Alma Tavern, while Alex's victim, at the Rainbow Casino, was Cecilia Sparke.
The Westbury Park Tavern was the venue for John Curran's narrow Premier Three victory over James Lintell-Smith.

21/02/18: Monday round up

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were thirteen players in action on Monday, including eleven at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom ten contested the seventh phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a DMP Tourno.
Three Premier League matches and one 2018 Brunel Trophy match were completed.
Chris Rogers scored a double Premier One victory over Steffen Nowak at the Rainbow Casino.
Pearl Foster began her Premier Two Red campaign with a defeat by George Georgiou at the club.
And Stephen Little defeated Daniel Eldridge to preserve his two lives in the Brunel Trophy.
In the DMP competition, well run by Stephen in Ian Tarr's absence, the field was reduced from ten to nine part way through when Stelios Choustoulakis became unwell.
The five games he played have been expunged from the event.
But whichever way it could be looked at, the clear winner was Roland Herrera, who went through the entire field unbeaten.
Ian's SGP lead has been reduced to less than three points over George Georgiou, with Roland and Simonetta Herrera not far behind.
And Jim Green has become the new leader of the DMP section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship.

18/02/18: Weekend league action

There were three league matches played over the weekend.
Andrew Gay edged a Saturday evening Conference League match over Mathew Nicholls at the Beaufort.
And Ismail Yilmaz came out on top of a Premier Two Red double header against Mike Smith at the Black Castle on Sunday.

17/02/18: Simonetta wins again

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were fifteen players present at the Rainbow Casino on Thursday, of whom eight contested the first of the year's eight GP30 tournaments.
The tournament was ably directed by Chris Hughes in Ian Tarr's absence.
Four and a half league matches were played, as well as two Brunel Trophy first round matches.
Alex Hodge and Richard Owsley each lost a Brunel life thanks to Paul Watts and Simonetta Herrera respectively.
And Premier Two Blue has a new leader after Rufus Rozelaar won two of the three matches he played.
The defeat was at the hands of previous leader Daniel Eldridge, but Rufus won the return, plus an earlier encounter with Stephen Little.
In the same division Tim Line and Mandy Macdonald adjourned a match with Tim 7-5 ahead.
Richard won a Red Division match against Ismail Yilmaz, and the Conference League is up and running with th first victory being registered by Thomas Preece against Stelios Choustoulakis.
The advertised event was won by Simonetta, who defeated Alex and Adam, before beating Tim in the final.
Tim had got past Roland Herrera and Tony Walters.
Alex defeated Chris in the consolation final.

15/02/18: Tuesday's Premier League round-up

There were three Premier League matches played on Tuesday.
Rufus Rozelaar twice defeated Drew Caudwell 11-6 at the Rainbow Casino in Premier Two Blue.
And James Lintell-Smith usurped Premier Three leader Steve Cox by beating him 11-8 at the Bristol County Sports Club.

13/02/18: Daniel and Simonetta take over in Premier Two

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were eighteen players in action on Monday, including sixteen at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom ten contested the sixth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of 3-point round robins.
Seven Premier League matches and one 2018 Brunel Trophy match were completed.
In the latter event, reigning champion Nick Barham came perilously close to losing one of his two lives, scraping home 11-10 against Rookie of the Year Steve Cox.
Steffen Nowak began his Premier One campaign with a double header against Paul Watts.
The pair won one apiece.
And both Premier Two Blue and Premier Two Red have new leaders.
Daniel Eldridge's share of the spoils against Drew Caudwell took him to the summit of the Blue Division, while Simonetta Herrera's similar feat against Cliff Blofield made her the Red Divisuion leader.
And at the Rainbow Casino Rufus Rozelaar scored a Blue Division win over Mandy Macdonald.
In the round robins, one of the groups featured an unusual, but not unprecedented, five way tie, where everyone won two out of four matches.
In the other Ian Tarr scored a clean sweep, winning the decider against Mathew Nicholls.
Ian's SGP lead is now up to 48 points, while Stelios Choustoulakis has a comfortable lead in the race to become the competition's leading intermediate.

11/02/18: Cliff beats Ismail on Sunday

In a Premier Two Red meeting at the Bristol County Sports Club on Sunday Cliff Blofield scored an 11-7 victory over Ismail Yilmaz.

08/02/18: Simonetta wins February grand prix tournament

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were just eleven players present at the Rainbow Casino on Thursday to contest the February grand prix tournament.
The low turnout was due in part to the popular Gibraltar tournament, where a handful of our finest are participating.
Simonetta Herrera was the tournament winner, defeating Richard Owsley and Gaz Owen, before despatching Ian Tarr 11-3 in the final.
Ian had come through the longer part of the draw with victories over Steve Morris, Cynthia Roberts and Chris Hughes.
Richard won the consolation flight, beating Alex Hodge and Roland Herrera.
Of the two Winner Takes All pools, the 10 one was won, but only Gaz invested in the 20 pool, resulting in a rollover to the March tournament of just 60.

07/02/18: Wednesday Premier League and Brunel Trophy round-up

There were two Premier League and one Brunel Trophy matches played on Wednesday.
Mandy Macdonald became the second player to lose a Brunel Trophy life when she lost 5-11 to George Georgiou at the Rainbow Casino.
And in Premier One leader Gaz Owen continued his sequence of one side matches, this time winning emphatically against Paul Watts at St Georges Hall to complete a league double.
Giving chase is reigning champion Nick Barham, who won a tight encounter with Alex Hodge at the Old Colonial 11-9.

06/02/18: Tuesday Premier League action

There were three Premier League matches played on Tuesday.
In the top flight leader Gaz Owen suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of Andy Boysan at the Black Swan.
Gaz is fitting several matches in before he goes on his travels, while Andy is quietly and efficiently setting off in pursuit, having now won all of his first three league matches.
In St Werburghs there was a Premier Two Red double header, as Mike Smith played host to Cliff Blofield.
Cliff won the opener 11-8, but Mike struck back to take the return 11-3.

06/02/18: Gaz suffers early Brunel defeat

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were twenty players in action on Monday, including seventeen at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom fifteen contested the fifth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of Tric Trac Tournos.
Four Premier League matches were completed, and the first result of the 2018 Brunel Trophy is in.
That result saw Gaz Owen swiftly defeated by Neil Young.
Gaz had earlier whitewashed Paul Watts at St Georges Hall, extending his Premier One lead.
In Premier Two Blue Mandy Macdonald edged out league leader Ian Hedges at Grounded, Bedminster.
Two Premier Two Red matches were played at the club, Neil and Ismail Yilmaz defeating Cliff Blofield and Tom Chapman respectively.
In the Tric Tracs, the groups were won by Ian Tarr and George Georgiou.
Ian's SGP lead over second placed George is now 17 points, while Stelios Choustoulakis now heads the race to be the competition's leading intermediate by 47 points, and is the early leader in the Tric Trac Tourno section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship.

05/02/18: Awards Night photos are online

Roland and Simonetta Herrera's photo album for Thursday's Awards Night is now online here.
Actually it has been for a few days, but I forgot to post the link. Doh!
Sorry, Roland and Simo.
They're great photos, and as always they capture the true flavour of the evening.

04/02/18: Ismail off the mark in Keynsham

Ismail Yilmaz scored his first Premier Two Red victory of the season today.
He beat Chris Hughes 11-9 at a new Bristol Backgammon venue, the Brass Mill, Keynsham.

03/02/18: Adam still unbeaten

Adam Sinclair maintained his unbeaten start to the 2018 Premier Two Red campaign today.
He defeated Ismail Yilmaz 11-8 at the Brewhouse and Kitchen.

02/02/18: Friday Premier League action

Three Premier League matches were played on Friday.
In Premier One at Brookmans Farm, Swindon, Simon Baker got his season off to a winning start, pipping Gary Plant 11-9.
And Tom Chapman made it three wins in two days wehen he scored a double success over Simonetta Herrera, winning 11-9 and 11-10, after being 4-8 in arrears in both matches.
Simonetta slips below Adam Sinclair on average points difference at the top of the table.

02/02/18: First round Brunel Trophy draw made

The draw for the first round of the 2018 Brunel Trophy was made yesterday evening at the Bristol Backgammon Annual Awards Night.
The annual double elimination knock-out is supposed to be for forty players, but Director Ian Tarr only managed to find thirty-eight this time, which will mean a slight reduction in the prize pool.
Read the draw here.

02/02/18: All the news from Awards Night

Rainbow Casino BristolThe Bristol Backgammon Annual Awards Night was held at the Rainbow Casino on Thursday, with twenty-three present.
A total of 93 prizes -- either permanent trophies, or mementoes, or envelopes containing cash -- were scheduled to be dispensed by Bristol Backgammon Director Ian Tarr.
But as is always the case, a few sponsors and prize winners were unable to attend.
The evening, however, was about those who did attend, and photographs by Roland and Simonetta Herrera, when available, will give a great flavour of the occasion.
The usual league and knock-out awards took up most of the presentation, but of course there was the element of mystery surrounding the "surprise" awards.
Steve Cox won the Rookie of the Year award (sponsored by Paul Gilbertson; the Gaz Owen sponsored Most Improved Player prize went to Fred North; and Simonetta Herrera's Sports Person of the Year award went to Daniel Eldridge.
Before the event there was some Premier League action.
At Portland Square Chris Rogers gained full revenge for his Premier One defeat the previous day when he beat Cecilia Sparke 11-2.
And in the same division Nick Barham won a nail-biter against Gaz Owen.
In Premier Two Blue Ian Hedges beat Mandy Macdonald 11-6, while in the parallel Red Division Tom Chapman scored his first win of the season at Richard Owsley's expense.
After the ceremony, there was a ten player DMP Tourno, organised by Alex Hodge, which was won by Adam Sinclair.

01/02/18: Wednesday's Premier League action

Three Premier League matches were played on Wednesday. Daniel Eldridge and Steve Morris met at the Rainbow Casino for a Premier Two Blue double header, and Daniel won both matches to go top of the division.
And Ye Shakespeare in Victoria Street was the venue for a Premier Three match where James Lintell-Smith defeated Matt Robson 11-4.

31/01/18: Cecilia starts with local derby win

Cecilia Sparke and Chris Rogers began their Premier One campaigns at home yesterday.
Cecilia won 11-6.

30/01/18: Stephen and Alex take Nackgammon honours

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fifteen players in action on Monday, including thirteen at the Bristol County Sports Club, of whom twelve contested the fourth phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of Nackgammon Tournos.
Andy Boysan and Gary Plant met for a Premier One double header at the Alma Tavern, and it was Andy who came away with a brace of victories.
Stephen Little played a Premier Two Blue match and a half before the advertised event.
His opener against Drew Caudwell ended in a 2-11 defeat, but the return was adjourned with Stephen 8-1 ahead.
Stephen and Alex Hodge won the Nackgammon Tournos.
The SGP table still sees Ian Tarr a little ahead of the pursuers, who are headed by Simonetta Herrera and George Georgiou.
The absent Azad Rafi is still the competition's leading intermediate, and Thomas Preece would head the Nackgammon section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship had he taken the paying entry option.
But as it is that honour falls to Stelios Choustoulakis.
And the Drew Caudwell sponsored Nackgammon Grand Prix is topped jointly by Alex and Stephen.

28/01/18: George wins Sunday knock-out

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were fifteen players in action on Sunday at the Rainbow Casino to contest the first of the year's ten Sunday knock-out tournaments.
Amongst the field were Kevin Peters, who was making his Bristol Backgammon debut, and Julian Minwalla, making a welcome visit from the Midlands.
George Georgiou took the main honours, defeating Cynthia Roberts, Chris Hughes and Adam Sinclair, before overcoming Alex Hodge in the final.
Alex had got past Jason Champion, Ed Turner and Gaz Owen en route to the final.
Ian Tarr took the consolation flight with wins over Jason, Kevin and Julian.
Simonetta Herrera and Ed, each having been eliminated at the second hurdle, made the most of the opportunity to get in a brace of Premier Two Red matches.
Simonetta won them both, and heads the league table, just ahead of Adam on average points difference.

26/01/18: Friday's Premier One action

Three Premier One matches were played on Friday.
The Blathwayt Arms, Swindon, was the venue for the meeting of Gary Plant and Gaz Owen, and Gaz inflicted Gary's first league defeat of the season.
The 11-5 win maintains Gaz's early season impetus.
And champion Nick Barham scored his first two league wins of the season with two 11-5 victories over Fred North at the Rainbow Casino.

26/01/18: Simonetta wins new format Speedgammon competition

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty-two players in action on Thursday, including nineteen at the Rainbow Casino, of whom thirteen contested the first of the year's eight Speedgammon Grand Prix tournaments.
Eleven Premier League matches were completed, and one adjourned.
Premier Two Blue was the primary focus of league action, with seven results and one adjournment.
Ian Hedges and Tim Line were the most active.
Ian won two of his three matches, while Tim won just the one.
There were also wins for Rufus Rozelaar, Phil Charlton, Simon Hughes and Steve Morris.
In the parallel Red Division Ian Tarr -- at the Shakespeare, Totterdown -- Chris Hughes and Richard Owsley picked up victories.
And Jon Organ scored his maiden league victory in Premier Three at the Bristol County Sports Club.
The advertised event featured a new format, with smaller round robin groups, a play-off phase for group winners, and new side pools.
Simonetta Herrera won every match she played without even conceding a single point.
Her exemplary group phase earned her a bye to the play-off final, while other group winners Tim and Gaz Owen met for the right to challenge her in the final.
Tim defeated Gaz, but not Simonetta, who is thus the initial leader of the SGP table.

24/01/18: Fred wins again

A late Tuesday Premier One result has come to light.
Alex Hodge and Fred North met at the Rainbow Casino, and Fred -- having lost his first three matches in the top flight -- appears to be finding his feet, his 11-3 win making it two in succession.

23/01/18: League wins for Gary and Steve

Tuesday's league action featured victories for Gary Plant and Steve Cox.
Gary's win was at the Bridge Inn, Yatton, where he defeated Stuart Mann 11-9 in Premier One.
And Steve scored his 11-6 Premier Three success against John Curran at the Bristol County Sports Club.

23/01/18: Tim cashes in New York

Tim Line was runner-up in the consolation flight of the Championship section at the New York Open, losing the final to Roberto Litzenberger.

22/01/18: Thirteen in Monday action

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were thirteen players in action on Monday, including the eleven at the Bristol County Sports Club who contested the third phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of 3-point round robins.
Jason Champion played host to Fred North in a Premier One double header, where the spoils were shared.
Jason won the opener 11-6, while Fred took the second 11-8.
The round robins were won by Ian Tarr (the six player group) and Adam Sinclair (the five player group).
Ian takes the overall SGP lead -- by 5 points from George Georgiou, while Azad Rafi is building a solid lead in the race to become the competition's leading intermediate.
And Azad also leads the 3-point round robin section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship.

21/01/18: Adam setting Red Division pace

Adam Sinclair's only previous season in Premier Two saw him establish a record sequence of wins from the start of that season.
Now he's back, it seems he is attempting to repeat the feat.
A double success against George Georgiou at the Rainbow Casino today sees him with a four match winning start to the season.

19/01/18: Gaz wins opening handicap event

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were twenty-five players in action on Thursday, including twenty-three at the Rainbow Casino, of whom nineteen contested the first of the year's nine Handicap Trophy tournaments.
Three Premier League matches were completed, and two adjourned.
In Premier One Gaz Owen held off a strong comeback from Stuart Mann to register his third successive league win.
Ian Hedges edged home 11-9 in a Premier Two Blue encounter with Peter Thistlewood.
And at the Bristol County Sports Club Steve Cox and Jon Organ began their Premier Three campaigns, Steve winning 11-7.
The tournament field included a domestic Bristol Backgammon debut for UKBGF Board member Anna Clarke, for whom a conference visit coincided nicely with our event.
And it was Gaz who emerged from the field to win the tournament, defeating Daniel Eldridge, Nick Barham and Alex Hodge before beating Anna in the final.
Anna had arrived in the final via wins over Stephen Little, John Chester and Jim Green.
Hugh Swann took the consolation flight with victories over Ian Tarr, Steve Morris and Ed Turner.
Gaz becomes the initial leader of the Handicap Trophy table.

17/01/18: Wednesday league action

There were three more Premier League matches played on Wednesday.
A Premier Two Red double header was played at the Rainbow Casino.
And the spoils were shared between Ed Turner and George Georgiou.
The Bristol County Sports Club was the venue for a Premier Three match between John Curran and Matt Robson.
Matt started his Premier League career with an 11-8 victory.

16/01/18: Tuesday league action

There were three Premier League matches played on Tuesday.
Carwyn Jenkins made the trip up from Bridgwater to play a couple of Premier Three matches at the Rainbow Casino.
He won his first match, against John Curran, 11-4, but then succumbed 7-11 to James Lintell-Smith.
Later the Brunello Lounge was the venue for a clash of Weston-super-Mare's two finest.
Nick Barham's Premier One title defence has not had the best of starts.
Having lost his opening match on Thursday, he again came second, this time 3-11 to Alex Hodge.

15/01/18: Fifteen in Monday action

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were fifteen players in action on Monday, including the thirteen at the Bristol County Sports Club who contested the second phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- a pair of DMP Tournos.
Brookhouse Farm, Swindon, was the venue for a Premier One afternoon meeting between Fred North and Gary Plant, which Gary won 11-8.
In the DMP Tournos Simonetta Herrera won the seven player group outright, while the six player group saw the pot shared between Stelios Choustoulakis and Ian Tarr.
George Georgiou is now the leader of the SGP table, just four points ahead of Simonetta.
Stelios leads the DMP section of the Roland Herrera and John Curran intermediate sponsorship.

14/01/18: Simonetta starts with a double

George Georgiou and Simonetta Herrera began their respective Premier Two Red campaigns with a double header at the Rainbow Casino today.
And Simonetta won both matches -- the first 11-5 and the second 11-9 after trailing 1-8.

14/01/18: Yusuf resigns from league

Having convinced Director Ian Tarr that he could conduct a Premier League season from overseas, Yusuf Adenwala has had second thoughts.
After encountering difficulties which ruled out his initial visit from Bahrain this month, he has decided to resign from Premier Three rather than risk causing greater damage with a partially completed season.
This leaves a league already short of players even shorter.
The remaining seven players play each other three times, giving a total fixture load of eighteen matches each.
The Premier Three rules have been amended accordingly.
The precedent provided by Galway based Eamonn Reay -- who very successfully completed three Bristol league seasons between 2013 and 2015 -- had been influential in Ian's acceptance of Yusuf's plea for admission, but future similar applications may now be viewed more cautiously.

12/01/18: Jason wins January grand prix event

Rainbow Casino BristolThere were eighteen players in action on Thursday, including seventeen at the Rainbow Casino, of whom sixteen contested the first of the year's Bristol Grand Prix tournaments.
There was league action at the Blathwayt Arms, Bath, where Fred North made his top flight debut against Gaz Owen.
Gaz took the match 11-0 and later added an 11-9 victory over Nick Barham at the casino before the tournament.
Two Premier Two Blue matches were also completed at the casino, Tim Line and Stephen Little recording victories over Mandy Macdonald and Ian Hedges respectively.
In the tournament it was Jason Champion who came out on top, something he is in the habit of doing in January.
This was his third successive January grand prix triumph.
He defeated Miles Farren, Adam Sinclair and Simon Hughes before despatching Ian Hedges 11-2 in the final.
Ian had got past Tony Walters, Alex Hodge and Nick.
Tim took the consolation flight with victories over Gaz, Simonetta Herrera and Roland Herrera.
Jason is thus the early BGP leader.
The new side pool regime is proving interesting.
While Jason scooped the 10 Winner Takes All Pool, its new 20 counterpart attracted only two investors, and the amount will roll over to February.

10/01/18: Wednesday league action

Three more league matches were played on Wednesday.
Drew Caudwell and Mandy Macdonald opened their Premier Two Blue campaigns, first of all at Grounded, Bedminster, and then at the Rope Walk.
Drew eventually won 11-10.
In the same division Ian Hedges started with an 11-6 win -- at the expense of early leader Daniel Eldridge at the Rainbow Casino.
And the first Premier Three match of the season occurred at a new Bristol Backgammon venue, the Novotel in Victoria Street.
And John Curran began his Premier League career with an 11-5 victory over James Lintell-Smith.

10/01/18: Tuesday league action

There were three league matches played on Tuesday.
At the Rainbow Casino Alex Hodge began his Premier One campaign with an 11-8 victory over Gaz Owen.
And the Old Fish Market was the venue for a double header in Premier Two Blue, when Daniel Eldridge scored a brace of wins over Simon Hughes.

09/01/18: Twelve in action at opening Monday session

Bristol County Sports ClubThere were twelve players in action at the Bristol County Sports Club to contest the first Monday session of the year -- the first phase of the Monday Club Spring Grand Prix -- three four player 3-point round robins.
This would have been two six player groups, but Mathew Nicholls, who also turned up to play, was summoned away because of a bereavement.
Our condolences go to Mathew and his partner Caroline at such a sad time.
The three groups each had an outright winner -- Jason Champion, George Georgiou and Roland Herrera taking the pots, plus shares of the initial SGP lead.
Azad Rafi and Hugh Swann each won two of three matches played to hold the joint lead in the race to become the competition's top intermediate, and they also lead the 3-point round robin section of the John Curran and Roland Herrera intermediate sponsorship.

07/01/18: Adam's double in Weston

The Old Colonial, Weston-super-Mare, played host to the first Premier Two Red action of the season.
And Adam Sinclair's journey proved worthwhile when he defeated Tom Chapman 11-7 and 11-6.

05/01/18: Nineteen at opening 2018 event

Rainbow Casino BristolThe opening event of 2018, the first of the year's series of nine GP5 tournaments at the Rainbow Casino, was attended by nineteen players, including a debut appearance for Mike Kleinsteuber.
The field was undoubtedly bolstered slightly by the new initiative to give players more side pool options.
And Adam Sinclair made light of being one of six players not to get a bye in winning the event, defeating Frank Jones, Ian Tarr, Simon Hughes and Gaz Owen before winning the final against Richard Owsley who had arrived there via victories over Nick Barham, Stephen Little and Alex Hodge.
Nick won the consolation flight, beating Steve Morris, Chris Rogers and Daniel Eldridge.
Adam thus opens up a very handy 50 points lead over second placed Richard.
Before the tournament there was a Premier Two Blue double header -- the opening league action of the year -- between Stephen and Tim Line, with honours even.

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