English backgammon player John Hurst won the UK Masters, which took place last week at the Casino at The Empire, at Leicester Square casino, London. The UK Masters is the first event in the 2007-8 World Series of Backgammon tour. Hurst will qualify automatically for the WSOB Final, scheduled to July 2008. UK Masters will be broadcast by Eurosport from December 2007.
The UK Masters backgammon event was the first shot in the 2007-8 World Series of Backgammon events. Set in the heart of London at the new Casino at The Empire from Thursday, November 15 to November 18, the UK Masters featured the world’s top backgammon players including Gus Hansen, “Falafel” Natanzon, and John Clark among others.
The backgammon championship was taken by John Hurst after a long 15-games battle against German backgammon pro, Christian Plenz. Hurst, a veteran member of the Battersea Backgammon Club, ensured his seat at the WSOB Final. The runner up was the UK resident of Japanese origin Shino Kazuhiro, followed by Christian Plenz, and Danish Dane Alan Westerman.
The next event in the WSOB tour, the TrueMoneyGames Nordic Open in the 2007-8 WSOB tour will take place in Copenhagen, Denmark on March 2008. The tournament will be followed by The Riviera Cup from the Palm Beach Casino, Cannes, which will precede the World Series of Backgammon Championship.
This year, the World Series of Backgammon finals will be held in a new format for the first time. At the new tournament format, each of the eight leading players of all three events and eight top online qualifiers will win EUR 10,000 seats for the WSOB Championship.