Friday, 13 December 2019

Wednesday December 11

The turn-up for the final night of play for 2019 was a record 19 players and the play was spirited for the cash and kudos on offer!!

It was also a bitter sweet night with the announcement of the passing of one of the founding members of Sydney Backgammoners, Eva Bitel, who passed away on Tuesday December 10 following  complications from a car accident in late October.

Eva and her late husband Ivor have been an integral part of the Australian backgammon scene for over 40 years and they both worked tirelessly to advance the game and encourage growth in the backgammon community Australia wide. 

She will be sadly missed by not only the backgammon family, the Medical fraternity that she had been an active member of, the Bridge community, but also the many others from all walks of life who came in contact with this wonderful warm, caring, intelligent, fierce and funny lady.

Our lives will be richer for knowing her .

The first item of the night was to draw the jackpot player, and Terry Christodoulou was chosen, but failed to collect.

Next came the “decorating”of the the three top-of-the-ladder players with “target” signs so that all of the other players were in absolutely  no doubt about the identity of the players we had to take down in order to protect the end-of-year cash for a bigger purse next year.

With Arthur Ramer, Gary Stavrou and Jim Bean duly decorated play commenced.

Final placings were:

1st Ned Marootians
2nd Mohammad Nejati
3rd Arthur Ramer

Arthur Ramer collected the Bonanza Prize of $303, being the dollar equivalent of his points score.
Jim Bean and Gary Stavrou, not being placed on the night, failed to win a cash prize.

Remember that our club is on holidays and will resume on January 8th
with a brand new monthly prize... stay tuned.



The game between  Angelo Voulgaris and John Symon gets a thumbs up from Terry Christodolou with Hamish Moore watching from the sidelines.

In the foreground Susan Wan and Ben Anderson play a fun match whilst Zhiman Rahmati and Giancarlo Yannoulis compete in the background.


A target-wearing Gary Stavrou is challenged by Marie Chandler.




Thursday, 5 December 2019

Wednesday December 4

On the penultimate night of play for the year we again had an enthusiastic group of 18 players competing for the spoils of the night, AND, for some 
of the players, this was the last opportunity to secure a place in the top three ladder positions and a chance to compete for the big prize of the year.

By evening's end, Arthur Ramer, Gary Stavrou and Jim Bean are the top three on the ladder, with David Layman waiting in the wings should any of them be unable to attend.

Ned Marootians was drawn as the jackpot player for the night but left empty handed on this occasion.

Final placings were:

1st place  David Layman

2nd place Mohammad Nejati

3rd place Grayham Rundle

See you all next week for what promises to be a very exciting night, and, just to add to the festivities, there will be tea, coffee and cake provided by Sydney Backgammoners, all from your $2 nightly contribution.


Raffael Chattah and Ben Anderson tussle  happily in the foreground whilst Gary Stavrou and Arthur Ramer complete a more serious battle in background.

Two happy little vegemites- Giancarlo Yannoulis and David Layman having a jolly game.


A cosy little cluster of 14 of the 18 players from tonight!




Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Wednesday November 27

For the 2nd week in a row we had eighteen players attend to compete for the spoils of the night.

John Symon was selected as the jackpot player and on this occasion all the stars aligned for him as he took not only the top spot of the night, albeit sharing the kudos with Kee Yio Wan who finished with the same number of points, and scooped up the jackpot purse as well

Final placings were:

Equal first place

John Symon
Kee Yio Wan

Third place

Grayham Rundle

See you all next week!


John Symon (R) makes a start on his comeback from 1-6 down to take first place

Angelo Voulgaris and Mahnaz Rostami do battle in the background while Giancarlo Yannoulis and Hamish McKenzie tussle in the foreground.




Carol Wakelin and Grayham Rundle in an early match.




 Gary Stavrou and Kee Yio Wan present a study in intense concentration.




Sunday, 24 November 2019

Wednesday November 20

A record eighteen players gathered to compete tonight, with Marie Chandler, introduced by Grayham Rundle, our newest competitor.

Hopefully we will see her again – welcome Marie!

Gary Stavrou was drawn as the jackpot contender but was shuffled out of the top spot  on this occasion by a very in-form John Symon.

Final placings were:

1st John Symon

2nd Breck McCormack

3rd Susan Wan

The ABF AGM is on this Saturday  prior to the Australian Open, all financial members welcome.


Ben Anderson versus Kee Yeo Wan with supporters Susan Wan and Rafael Chattah looking on.

Grayham Rundle and new player Marie Chandler in a fiendly match.

Jackpot hopeful Gary Stavrou battles Giancarlo Yannoulis.




Wednesday November 13

Only  fourteen contestants tonight – a few of our stalwarts were missing in action for various reasons.

Jackpot player was Rafael Chattah but tonight was not his night so the pot is in place for next week.

Final placings were:

1st Angelo Voulgaris 

2nd place was a three -way tie between  Gary Stavrou, Zhiman Rahmati and Grayham Rundle – that's a first!!



Rafael Chattah and Arthur Ramer in a tense tusssle.


Gary Stavrou and Mahnaz study the state of play




A couple of happy chappies - Grayham Rundle and Breck McCormack




Sunday, 3 November 2019

Wednesday October 30

Sixteen seems to be our magic number – think this the third week in a row we have had this number.

Mohammad Nejati was picked as the jackpot player, which again seems to be a regular occurrence, and this time he won!!

Well done Mohammad!!

The final placings were: 

1st Mohammad Nejati

2nd Mahnaz Rostami

3rd Arthur Ramer

Must be the last match to finish - Susan Wan and Giancarlo Yannoulis have a large number of spectators.

A couple of happy players - Carol Wakelin and Grayham Rundle in a match that came down to the last roll at 6-6




In the foreground John Symon is getting scuttled by Mahnaz Rostami and in the background Grayham Rundle and Angelo Voulgaris battle on




Thursday, 24 October 2019

Wednesday October 23

Despite a couple of our stalwarts being away we still had fifteen players for the night.

Arthur Ramer was drawn as the jackpot player but despite getting a free ride as the “bye”in the first round he failed to collect.

Final placings were:

1st Ben Anderson

2nd Carol Wakelin 

3rd Breck McCormack

Don't forget the Australian Open at the Persian Rose on 23 November.




Ben Anderson looks quietly confident as David Layman scratches his head.


Susan Wan and Eva Bitel play under the watchful eye of Giancarlo Yannoulis.




In the War of the Wans  husband and wife Susan and Kee Yio tussle over  a board.




Breck and Mahnaz do battle with Mohammad Nejati and Rafael Chattah watching on.




Thursday, 17 October 2019

Wednesday October 16

A very healthy turn-up tonight – 16 players, the most we have had for a while.

Welcome back to Giancarlo Yannoulis after your European escapade – the final results prove you have not forgotten  your skills.

Rafael Chattah was drawn as the jackpot player but on this occasion went home empty handed even though he finished a respectable 4th after eventual winner John Symon, with Giancarlo Yannoulis in 2nd and Ned Marootians scooping up third place.

The Australian Open is on the weekend of 23 and 24 November  at the Persian Rose restaurant – please put the date in your diary .

See you all again next week!!



Opponents Gary stavrou and Grayham Rundle look pretty happy  but newly returned observer Giancarlo Yannoulis just looks perplexed.

Carol Wakelin and David Layman battle out the last round on David's nice new board.




Ned Marootians and Hamish Moore seem to be having a happy match.




John Symon and Mahnaz Rostami seem to be having and intense match.




Saturday, 12 October 2019

Wednesday October 9

A baker dozen competitors fronted up to battle over the boards tonight.

Mahnaz Rostami was picked as the jackpot player but on this occasion she was unable to claim the purse.

Welcome back to Grayham Rundle who has returned after holidaying in Europe refreshed and toting a very swanky new board!

Congratulations to David Layman for defeating Arthur Ramer in the giant slayer contest, wresting 457 from him in the process.

The final result was :

Eva Bitel 1st
Ned Marootians 2nd
Mohammad Nejati 3rd

Husband and wife Susan and Kee Yio Wan battle side by side.


Ben Anderson and Arthur Ramer are taking this game very seriously.




Grayham Rundle looks pretty happy playing Angelo Voulgaris on his new board.






Friday, 11 October 2019

Sydney Open

Sunday October 6th saw the 2nd Sydney Open Backgammon Tournament being held at the Canada Bay Club in Five Dock.

Twenty three players attended, slightly less than last year, but a combination of school holidays, the NRL grand final, a long weekend and the start of daylight saving time may have all contributed to this, and these factors will be taken into consideration when picking next year's date.

All players competed in the first round with the top 12 after 3 rounds going on to compete for the main prize and the remainder participating in a second flight tournament.

All matches were to 7 points, with two being played before the lunch break and last match of the 1st flight and all 3 of the two second flight matches taking place over the afternoon and early evening.

Arthur Ramer was the eventual victor taking home not only the Main flight prize money and a beautiful crystal doubling cube, but also an entry to a $1000 satellite tournament in the upcoming Melbourne tournament - thanks to Ralph Burd for supporting us in this way – your generosity is very much appreciated.

Robbie Solomon picked up 2nd place and also the side pool as he was the top-placing player of the five who entered.

Ron Shaked took out the main flight consolation prize

Kee Yio Wan won the Second flight tournament. 

Mahnaz Rostami took home the Second flight consolation prize.

Susan Wan and Ned Marootians in a tense match - Mohammed Nejati is an interested observer.
Thank you all for your support and we hope to see you all again next year.
Michelle Taubman and Arthur Ramer look pretty happy.




Mahnaz Rostami takes on Richard Fry with the John Symon-Robby Solomon tussle in the background.




Jim Bean and Ron Shaked in an early match with Greg Mitchell from Newcastle watching on.



Tournament director Gary Stavrou and Brenton Mestal play on with Garys daughter Electra assisting on the desk.

Eva Bitel and Hamish Moore in an early match.








Thursday, 26 September 2019

Wednesday September 25

A very robust group of 12 took to the boards tonight  and the first order of business was to draw the jackpot player.

Rafael Chattah was the jackpot pick of the day, but was unsuccessful this time.

Final placings were :

Gary Stavrou was top of the heap, John Symon just one point behind in second , and third place was split between Eva Bitel and Ned Marootians.

The final match of the night between John Symon and Mahnaz Rostami with interested observers Ned Marootians, Gary Stavrou and Mohammad Nejati


For those coming to the Canada Bay tournament on Sunday October 6th, please remember to set your clock forward on the Saturday so you arrive on time.
The final rolls in a match between David Layman and Ben Anderson




John Symon and Eva Bitel in an early match




Ned and Mahnaz in an early  tussle.




Thursday, 19 September 2019

Wednesday September 18

Ten players arrived for the evening's play and the newly returned Carol was chosen as the jackpot player.

Results for the giant slayer match between John Symon and Arthur Ramer were submitted, with Arthur retaining his points.

Final placings were:

TD Gary Stavrou 1st

Arthur Ramer 2nd

Breck McCormack 3rd



Mahnaz Rostami and Breck McCormack in a serious battle.

John Symon and  Eva Bitel battle for first round supremacy.



Mohammad Nejati and Angelo Voulgaris enjoying their first round match.



Saturday, 14 September 2019

Wednesday September 11

A total of twelve backgammoners faced off tonight.

It is worth repeating the late-comer rule as, unfortunately, two players were affected by it.

At 6.30 sharp the computer shuffles the names of those present.
If the number of players is odd, the computer randomly picks a player as the bye and 100 points are awarded for the un-played first round.

Players arriving after the shuffle are considered late-comers.
They may enter the tournament at the second round but, unlike a bye, are not awarded any points.

It was good to see Ned Marootians come tonight. 
We would like to see more of you, Ned.

David Layman was drawn as the Jackpot player but failed to capitalise on the opportunity.

The results for the evening were:

1st place, Gary Stavrou
2nd place, Jim Bean
3rd place, David Layman

Sorry for the lack of photos the last three weeks but our resident photographer, Carol, has been on holidays and will be back next week.

Thursday, 5 September 2019

Wednesday September 4

Spring fever must have struck our members as at least three of them are holidaying overseas.
Nevertheless we had nine starters and welcomed a new player to our club, Greg Woodhams.

Being the first Wednesday of the month we drew our Giantslayer for September to take on perennial Ladder Leader Arthur Ramer. John Symon now has the task of stripping Arthur of 427 points which, if he is successful, would be added to John's Ladder score.

Ben Anderson was drawn as the jackpot player but failed to capitalise.

Results for the evening were:

1st place to Gary Stavrou
2nd place to John Symon
3rd place to David Layman

Thursday, 29 August 2019

Wednesday August 28

In spite of two of our regulars, Carol Wakelin and Grayham Rundle, being on overseas sojourns we had eleven players cross swords tonight.

Our newish player, Hamish Moore, was drawn as the jackpot player but could not capitalise on the opportunity but did manage a win against our Ladder Leader Arthur Ramer... an achievement in itself!

John Symon returned from a skiing holiday, obviously invigorated as he beat all in his path.

Results for the night were:

1st place John Symon
2nd place Gary Stavrou
3rd place Giancarlo Yannoulis

Friday, 23 August 2019

Wednesday August 21

A very robust group of 14 gathered for last night's tournament, including yet another new player!!

Welcome to Angelo Voulgaris – hope you will become another regular.

Mohammad Nejati was drawn as the jackpot player for the 2ndweek in a row and THIS time he scooped up 1st place and the jackpot pennies!! Well done !!

Final placings were:

Mohammad Nejati 1st, and jackpot winner

Jim Bean 2nd

Carol Wakelin and Gary Stavrou  shared 3rdplace

A very perplexed Giancarlo Yannoulis studies the state of play with Grayham Rundle.

Newbie Angelo Voulgaris and Jim Bean seem to be enjoying their game.




Eva BItel and Ben Anderson in an early match.




Saturday, 17 August 2019

Wednesday August 14

Eleven stalwarts fronted up to play tonight and Arthur Ramer was drawn as the jackpot player.

The jack pot is, however, still intact as Arthur failed to capitalise tonight and the final winners were

1stGiancarlo Yannoulis

2ndGrayham Rundle

3rdBen Anderson 


Mahnaz gets some post -game coaching from Mohammad.

Eva Bitel and Mohammad Nejati in the final round - it came right down to the last roll - Mohammad won.




As David Layman and Gary Stavrou battle it out, Giancarlo and Mohammad watch with interest.