A great tournament - but you can’t have all
- Created on Sunday, 11 July 2010 06:42
- Last Updated on Wednesday, 28 November 2012 18:00
- Written by Martin Rep
The EC Riichi 2010 - Day 1
HANOVER, Germany - After two rounds I think this may become Gemma Collinge’s day again. The Cornish ‘ReachMahjongDotCom Babe’ has won her first two tables, and she has taken the lead with a considerable number of points before her major opponent, Sjef Strik. Whom, until now, she has never been able to beat.
Same place, one year earlier, Gemma was even more smiles and beaming like never before, when she won the First German Riichi Open, here in the Hanover Jazz Club. So,who knows?
But after the next round, she - well, she still smiles, but she is not in the lead anymore. And after the next, she has dropped from the top ten. Which then, by the way, is lead by Sjef Strik.
Sjef is very happy to be here in the first place. Two years ago, Sjef and I initialized the first European Riichi Championship, which we organized together with the Hanover Mahjong Club. This second championship has been taken over by the boys and girls from Hanover, and they are doing a great job again. Great food, enough water (quite important, since the outside temperature is about 32 degrees!) and nice people. The venue is just fine, and you never have to wait long for the last results.
And: two real judges. Benjamin Boas and Takunori Kajimoto, both living in Japan. They know just about everything about riichi. And they are quite strict as well. Norbert Luckhart from Hanover is the third judge.
After the five hanchan (rounds) of Day 1, it is not clear yet at all what everybody’s chances are. Sjefs major opponent now is his fellow countryman Maurice Demmer, who scored an impressive double yakuman with Suu Ankou: four concealed pons, going out on the head.
And my results? Well, let’s talk about that later. Or, even better: let’s not talk about it at all. It is just a great tournament, and you can’t have it all. If you insist: you can find me op spot number 73, so there are seven people who are doing worse than me. Anyway, I have beaten runner-up Maurice Demmer in the second hanchan, thanks to a nice Chinitsu (pure hand). So I am not exactly unhappy, even this is, until now, the only table I won.
As far as Sjef is concerned, the tournament will be an even larger success if, in South Africa, the Dutch will seize the World Cup today. The Octopus has predicted a Spanish victory over Holland, though. And they forgot to ask him about Sjef chances today.