Kalumba grabs a record 9th scrabble title

NATIONAL scrabble champion Paul Kalumba has urged the new government to promote the game in schools.

In an interview after winning the national title for a record nine times, Kalumba said scrabble was a game that directly helped children with their academics.

“It’s unique in that sense. As we target to educate our kids, scrabble in schools would be a game changer; kids have fun while learning,” he told The Mast.

Kalumba added that scrabble was good for children as it improved their word knowledge.

He said apart from just knowing words, scrabble has components on logic, mathematics and strategy.

“Point scoring helps the kids with their Math. Tiles are picked randomly and so when you have a word you know, you may not see it.

Scrabble helps the mind to make logic where there seemingly is none,” Kalumba added.

‘’It’s an attribute one needs beyond the game. It decides winners and losers in real life. Like chess, scrabble is a highly strategic game. It will help our kids to think strategically even in real life.”

Kalumba further said he was excited to have won the national title for the nineth time.

“The best lady, Ivy, is a relatively new player. I would like to encourage more people, especially school going kids to take up the

game. I therefore encourage parents to get their children to play scrabble,” said Kalumba.

Kalumba defended the title on Sunday after beating 15 other contenders.

He won 16 games out of 18, with a spread of 1,857.

Kalumba walked away with a K4,000 cash prize.

The two-day tournament, which was held at Spice Restaurant in Lusaka, saw Isaac Mwape finish second with 13 wins and a spread of 1,136.

Mwape walked away with a K3,000 cash prize.

On third position was Chitundu Mulenga who also finished with 13 wins, but was pushed to the third slot on account of a weaker spear of 639.

He pocketed K2,400 cash for the effort, K600 short of what Mwape received.

Dr Julius Mulele came in fourth with 12 wins and a spread of 1,269 to bag K1,600.

Also on 12 wins was veteran Patrick Mpundu who however settled on fifth position on account of a weaker spread of 1,128.

Mpundu walked away with a paltry K1,000 cash.

The Scrabble Association of Zambia also gave special prizes to selected participants, with Mulenga receiving another K1,000 for being the most improved player.

Mulenga scored the highest movement in rating points.

New player Davis Chansa scooped the best player award under 1,000 rating and walked away with K1,000 cash while Ivy Kanchele got the best lady prize to pocket K1,400.

The next tournament will be The Master’s, which features the country’s top 10 players on dates to be confirmed.

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