The 2024 New York Metropolitan Open Backgammon Championship directed by Lynn Ehrlich had a record-shattering attendance – proving that backgammon’s attraction is stronger than ever!! The Main ABT divisions drew 223 players, up from 173 last year and a record high for the NY Metro. The Advanced Beginners and Beginners had 72 players, up from 58 last year, also a record high.
It was a star-studded group of attendees including two-time world champion Akiko Yazawa from Japan (2014 and 2018) and world champion Lee Genud (1981) who was honored by induction into the American Backgammon Hall of Fame! Players came from all over the world: Australia, Canada, Caribbean, Costa Rica, Denmark, Germany, Jamaica, Japan, Lebanon, Switzerland, and the U.K.
Top honors went to Wilcox Snellings (USA/Costa Rica) who won the Championship division in a field of almost 100 players and to Oliver Squire (UK) who won the Super Jackpot in a field of 32 of the world’s finest players.
Alexandra Kupner (Switzerland) won the WWB-sponsored Lady Liberty Cup with a total of 40 entrants in two divisions. Irina Litzenberger (VA), who recently was certified as a Master by the Backgammon Masters Awarding Body (BMAB), was second. Martha Ghio (NY) took time away from her off-Broadway roles to attend and Ann Maher (UK) finished third/fourth. The intermediate division of the Lady Liberty Cup was won by Tyler Glenn (NY), with second going to Chris Coppa (NY).
Melanie Hughes (Caribbean) has shot forward in two short years at the game, finishing 3rd/4th in the ABT Intermediate division with a tough competitive field of 93 players.
New York often draws young people eager to achieve fame and fortune – and a number of them played in the Advanced Beginners division. It was chockful of women winners, who show great promise of future stardom! Keep your eyes out for the winner Marie-Schultz (NY) and Jamie Rosen (NY), a recent Princeton graduate, who has been winning trophies at the NY Metro since 2012.
Carol Joy Cole (MI) and Antoinette-Marie Williams (NY) – veterans of competitive backgammon did well in the Seniors event, finishing 3rd/4th.
Remy Davenport who has started the New York Backgammon Club that draws over a hundred players to weekly backgammon events helped staff the tournament directed by Lynn Ehrlich. She’s helping grow the game by leaps and bounds, introducing many new players to backgammon and the competitive scene at the largest championship tournament in the U.S.