Ahead of the October African championship in Zambia, after 36 round of games and three nerve-shredding days of intense mindgame Wellington Jighere reigned supreme, as he laid claim to the maiden title of the “Scrabble In The Jungle!” Series tournament held over the weekend.
Ten players comprising the top echelon in the national ranking and two wild cards were kept in a boot-camp settings in a secluded area in Warri, Delta State.
Drawing strength from his strong standing on Day Two, the 2015 World Champion reinforced his mental ruggedness to fend off a more renewed challenges from the other highly offensive nine rivals in the unforgiving tournament.
He would finished with aplomb and recorded 21 wins, a draw and 14 defeats after he defeated ‘Wordlord ‘ Eta Karo on Table 1 in round 35 with a game to spare and confirmed his newest status as The King of the Jungle to claimed the top prize.
Prince Omosefe took the first runner-up while Enoch Nwali, Eta Karo and Emmanuel Umujose came third, fourth and fifth.
Wild card entry Victor Godwin posted an encouraging result to finish 6th ahead of more illustrious adversaries Dennis Ikekeregor, Oshevire Avwenagha, Ryan Jacob and Nigeria No. 1 Etim Nsikak who is a major casualty as his ranking is bound to drop.
Other prizes and certificates were presented to deserving participants.
Activities in the camp were relayed live to hundreds of followers who monitored the progress of their players with high odds.
A much relieved Jighere said,
“Well it feel very good to have emerged as the King of the Jungle and quite elated because at a point in time, my very formidable opponent in Eta Karo really gave me a scare going into the last couple of games, I was very, very fatigued but I’m happy that I was able to pull through the stress and all. The edge for me was, I got lucky at some key moments and I probably was also better equipped at handling the fatigue that came with Jungle Scrabble play because this was a very, very gruesome scrabble tournament. Imagine we playing a total of 18 games non-stop on Day 2. There’s nowhere in the world where you play 18 games of scrabble as it was played in a day. That should tell you the level of stress we put ourselves through to get to where we are now.”
Organisers, Scrabble Las Vegas, said they were impressed with the success of the event.
“I feel excited!” said the President, Musa Olasupo, “its been a highly exhaustive three days, I mean its been a high octane scrabble since Friday, we can say boldly we held the scrabble world spellbound. Everybody glued to our whatapp Channels and live video transmission to monitor high octave first class competitive scrabble. For us it’s a promise delivered. Our hope is to be able to build on this and ensure that we, create more excitement, bring more variations and continue to build this model. The joy of this would be the nearest future to be able to bring top -world class players to come and experience what we can do in the Jungle. We thank everyone who is part of this, its been a worthwhile venture for us. We call for more collaboration, seek more support.”
The tournament which enjoyed the rating of WESPA, the NSF and MGi has been getting positive reviews for many all over the world.