Search

Highgate teenager crowned world’s best youth Scrabble player

10:28 02 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

Yesterday, 20:15

A group including MP Kier Starmer’s wife Victoria set off this morning from Kentish Town tube station to join thousands on a solidarity march through London in the wake of the inauguration of US President Donald Trump.

Fri, 17:31

A Henrietta Barnett consultation has sparked debate on whether the famous grammar school should give priority to Hampstead Garden Suburb pupils

Fri, 17:29

A Camden police officer has been sacked for dishonesty.

Fri, 15:52

Emergency services have rescued a woman trapped under a Porsche after it crashed into a cafe in West End Lane in West Hampstead.

Thu, 18:06

Virginia McKenna, actress and founder of the Born Free wildlife charity, is the latest to sign a 4,500-strong petition to create a haven for swans on the island on Hampstead Heath’s model boating pond.

Thu, 15:13

Camden Council’s leader has said the prime minister’s commitment to removing the UK from the EU’s single market is “deeply concerning” – and pledged to push for the “greatest possible access”.

Thu, 12:48

A plan to resurrect the Old White Bear pub in Hampstead by sharing its upper floors with a school has been given the go-ahead.

Thu, 11:47

Work will begin to replace gas mains in Gospel Oak after a public outcry forced its delay last year.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

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