Search

Highgate teenager crowned world’s best youth Scrabble player

PUBLISHED: 10:28 02 September 2014 | UPDATED: 16:00 03 September 2014

Jack Durand. Picture: Polly Hancock.

Jack Durand. Picture: Polly Hancock.

Archant

A Highgate teenager has become the first British player in history to win the World Youth Scrabble Championships.

Jack Durand, 14, of North Hill, won 20 of his 24 games in the three-day contest held in Colombo, Sri Lanka, to be crowned world champion and clinch a $1,000 (£606.45) prize on Sunday (August 31).

The City of London School pupil was so dominant in the tournament that he was deemed the winner with two games still left to play, having amassed an insurmountable lead over more than 120 fellow young competitors from around the world.

Jack’s winning words included “NEINEI”, a New Zealand shrub, “ASTONED”, an archaic form of ‘astonished’, and “WOURALI”, a poisonous plant extract, as well as “MISTINGS” across two triple-word scores for a whopping 122 points in a single turn.

His mother Dr Lynne Riley, a consultant paediatrician who travelled with her son for the tournament, said: “He’s over the moon. He didn’t really think he could come first but he was in first position after day one.

“It’s been what he’s wanted to do for several years.”

The victory was Jack’s first world championship win, having contested five tournaments since 2010. He finished fifth last year in Dubai, making him the best under-14 in the world.

The young wordsmith has been playing Scrabble since he was six and entering competitions since he was nine.

He became the UK’s under-18 Scrabble champion at the National Youth Scrabble Championship last year.

Dr Riley, who funds her son’s trips to tournaments around the world, said he now had his eyes set on success in the adult Scrabble circuit.

“I think his next goal is to retain the world youth title,” she said. “He wants to start to win some adult tournaments too and ultimately I’m sure he wants to become adult world champion.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Fri, 16:24

A man who started his first business at the age of 14 and who has dedicated his life to entrepreneurialism is hoping to turn Holborn and St Pancras blue.

Fri, 15:01

The introduction of plans to relocate a 110-year-old library to a nearby arts centre has been met with resistance by users.

Fri, 14:48

A tax on salt, scrapping Trident and adding a penny to income tax were three solutions to the social care crisis put forward in a general election hustings yesterday.

Fri, 08:00

Villagey Hampstead and Highgate are among the most desirable places in the country to live - but these five maps reveal stark differences in social inequality throughout the borough of Camden.

Thu, 19:16

Police have released an image of a man they want to speak to in connection with a sexual assault.

Thu, 17:34

Naturists are campaigning this summer to be able to enjoy the Heath and will be carrying out informal polls to gauge public opinion.

Thu, 16:51

An army of schoolchildren, staff and parents have raised £2,000 by taking part in a sponsored walk around Highgate Woods.

Thu, 16:14

A philanthropist and former refugee has urged the next government to ensure the safe passage of thousands more children, as he shared a stage with two Syrian refugees.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Often one of the most daunting parts of going through a divorce or separation is knowing what steps to take first and how to deal with financial issues which arise. Here, Jessica Palmer of Streathers Solicitors in Hampstead, offers answers to commonly asked questions

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now