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Masterpoints - of course they don't matter (well not much, or maybe a bit. or ...)

Reading Michael Bodell’s article” California Capital Swiss: Dwindling table counts produce some interesting masterpoint totals” and its responses made me think about masterpoint awards. Sure, I know, we don’t really care about MPs – they’re just long service awards and are totally misleading about MY skill level. Nonetheless, I have a couple of “amusing” (though not, at the time, to me) stories about MP transitions. I wonder if others might do as well.

1) I had had some success at what in NZ is called an “Intermediate” level – both NZ Intermediate Pairs and Interprovincial Intermediate Teams. These events only generated “C” masterpoints which basically took you nowhere. I had, when a very newbie, been present when one of NZ’s best young players was presented with his Life Master’s Certificate. I had an internal resolve that day to gain that status for myself. This required the gaining of 250 “A” points – I had none. Imagine my delight when I was invited to join a team of three NZ internationals to contest a tournament in which “A” points would be awarded to about the top half of the field. Oops – we finished one place below the A’s – b*gger

2) A few years later, I found myself with 249 “A”s. Family and work demands were restricting my tournament participation but I REALLY wanted that 250th A. I arranged, despite my good lady’s reservations, to play two tournaments – one with a current NZ Pairs champion and one with a current NZ Teams champion. Two weeks later, I had 249 A’s.

3) A couple of weeks on, an ex-partner rang me and asked to play a tournament. There were 8 A’s on offer – 5 for winning and 1 for each of the three sessions. That night, I had 257 A’s.

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