ISLAMABAD-Pakistan’s pride son, Syed Imaad Ali won the 13th edition of WESPA Youth Cup (formerly named World Youth Scrabble Championship) at the Dubai American Academy, Dubai. Talking to The Nation on Saturday, Pakistan Scrabble Association President Tariq Pervez said the 12 year old, Imaad, is one of the youngest player to have won the championship.

Imaad was in great form throughout the championship and dropped only four of the 24 games on his way to victory. Imaad ended with 20 wins and a spread of 1694. He was awarded a glittering trophy and a cash prize of $1000. Janul De Silva of Sri Lanka remained in the hunt for the title till the very end but lost the crucial final to Imaad and finished second with 19 wins and a spread of 1124. Napat Vatjaranurathon of Thailand finished 3rd with 17 wins and a spread of 1712. Pakistan’s Sohaib Sanaullah finished 5th with 16 wins and a spread of 1119.

The team trophy was also won by Pakistan. Dubai has been a happy hunting ground as the last time the championship was played in 2013, Pakistan won the championship and the team trophy. Australia is the only country to have won the championship three times.

In the side tournament for adults, Tariq Pervez of Pakistan won by defeating Sudhir Kamath of India in the final. Tariq also won the prize for the highest game score of 609 scored against Douglas Tsang of Hong Kong

There was another honour for Pakistan as the team leader Tariq was given the award for the “Best promoter of scrabble in the world” in recognition of his efforts to promote the game in Pakistan, which has become an example for other countries.

“It has been an amazing year for Pakistan scrabble as Pakistan has won every major youth title in the world. The latest victory completed the grand slam for Pakistan as they have already won all major youth titles including the Causeway Challenge, Princess Cup (twice) and the WESPA Youth Cup. Amazingly all these tournaments were won by five different players, no country in history has ever achieved such a feat in scrabble history and this record would be very hard to match,” Tariq concluded.