All is Fair in Love and Tantrix
The behind the scenes interview for the French Open is with the champion Laurene Pacull who just managed to squeak past her husband into first.
Every table tournament that Francois and I have played in, he has always finished behind me. So our goals were completely different this time: I didn't want to let finish go first and he, he had to be finish above me!
Saturday: Stories of corners and loops
1st game, I played Superbear. I felt confident but my line was blocked and I needed a BGG. He got all of them and wasted them. I started with a loss. Well done, Superbear!
Against Pierre, I forced a space with GGB and 3 corners left in the bag. He got all them all and wasted them but he told me at the end of the game that he didn't realise that the last one could be added onto his line! He just saw it when he picked it up! Another lost game.
Playing EllaJolie was nicer for me: she forced a space where she needed an RYY and she never got the right tile because of a double block. I got the only tile which could fit in and I wasted it. I won with a big margin.
I felt confident again against GrandPere: I kept him from joining his 2 lines by trying to force his a YYR but I had to fit a lot of other forced spaces. Finally I got the yellow straight and I joined his 2 lines. Another lost game due to corners!
Last year, I played Fafa and we have had a great battle with a 20 loop for her and she couldn't block my line and I won by 1 tile. Incredible, this year, it was exactly the same game! Then the same thing against Yan, he was looped and couldn't block my line.
Bdot and Vampyr (with a 16 loop I have closed early in the game, he started to try to block my line and to waste some tiles. like that he created a new line and we finished 19/18 for me!!) were tough opponents too.
At the end of the day I felt very happy, I qualified for the top 8 group. My goal is not to be the 8th.
The social event on Saturday has been held in a TexMex restaurant where we ate nice food and played a lot of funny games like we do in each table tournament. I am allowed to buy only 2 of games I discover during any Open, otherwise our house will be too small to contain all the games I am want to play!
Sunday: Mike, Bdot, Benopi, Pierre, Francois, Yan, Didman and me.....
It started the same again with a story of loop against Yan and he couldn't block my line again. Then Bdot took her revenge in a very interesting game: no mistakes were made and the tiles came for both of us at the right moment.
I took my revenge on Pierre. I think this game was the most stressful for me. We both went overtime and I added 2 tiles on his line due to the tension! At the end of the game, we were both speechless looking at the tiles, at least 2 minutes! we counted the tiles and... I won! pheeeww
Against Didman, I needed a big brainstorming at the end game: a few tiles left in the bag and I could block his line with a BRR if the tiles came in the right order. I had on my track the BRR which was a BGG too that I can put it on a space 3 tiles ahead on my line if the tiles came in the right order. The tiles came in the right order so I could add +6 and block him at the same time.
Francois, my lovely husband, says that I am a tantrix addict and he is right. It was a special challenge between us: the game was tough, my heart beat around 120 beats per minute the whole game! He made a lot of nice forced moves at the endgame to waste all my greens and added all his reds on his line. I was speechless! (EDITOR'S NOTE: This is rare) Very well played!
Since I have been playing Benopi at table tournaments (and maybe in online games too), I have never beaten him (not even on Tata beach in New Zealand when the sandflies distracted him!) but this sunday I got my first victory against him!
At this point of the tournament, Francois is in first and he has to play Bdot, I am 8 points behind him and in third, Pierre is 10 points behind. My last game is against Mike and my strategy was to avoid a losing by a big margin. It was ok for me to come second. So I started the game with the idea to 'help' him to make a 18 or 20 loop and to add on my line. But during the game, his possible loop became too big and I decided to turn his red line away by adding some red tiles onto his line. Then I got the GRG which allowed me to make my own loop. Yooupi! I won! I will be second! But Bdot got the victory against Francois with a big enough margin to allow me to come in first place. Unbelievable as said Benopi! And I finished ahead of him again!
Many thanks to all the players for coming. It was very nice to meet you in real life. Tantrix players are very very nice people.
(And I finished higher than Francois again!)