In only its second year, the Gibraltar Championship has established itself as one of the largest and most popular in the World. On Day 1, over 230 players sat down to play in two divisions, Championship and Intermediate. There were 3 previous World Champions and a generous smattering of Grand Masters present in the room as the Swiss format got underway – 11 point matches for the Championships and 9 pointers for the Intermediates. 5 wins (out of a possible 7 matches maximum) guaranteed qualification for the knockout stages.
The organising team remained unchanged from last year led by veteran Tournament Director Steen Grønbech, in close collaboration with Franco Ostuni (General Manager of the venue, the Caleta Hotel) and the Gibraltar Government. The Gibraltarians have embraced this competition and backgammon in general with open arms. Despite being minnows in the giant pond of European backgammon, they fielded a 7 strong team at the European Backgammon Team Championships in Denmark this year.