Team Liberia wins the Lonestar Cell MTN International Scrabble Competition

Press Release

Team Liberia

National Scrabble Association of Liberia (NSAL) and the National Scrabble Association of Sierra Leone (NSASL) faced off in the second round of the Lonestar Cell MTN International Scrabble Friendly and won 255 games to 139.  

The first round of games was played in December 2020 in Sierra Leone.  

The competition, held at the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex in Paynesville over the Independence Day Weekend, saw players, one from each team, sitting over a game board forming words with lettered tiles on a 225 square board.   Each lettered tile has a value and there are sections of the board itself that present opportunities for players to double or triple scores.  Players spelled out words by letters on the board which interlock like a crossword puzzle.

NSASL President Christian Asgill said that the game of scrabble is very dynamic.

“The game itself presents an opportunity for a win and it requires critical thinking.   It keeps young people’s focus and takes them away from social media because once they’re clued-in to the game, it takes away your time,” he said.

To win, players must have an outstanding vocabulary and the vision to see what words can be made from the tiled letters in their hands and those  already on the board.

NSAL’s new President Lester Morris said this is the international scrabble friendly competition that was founded in December of 2020 where the first round was held in Sierra Leone. that his goals are to start an annual full African Competition between the English Speaking countries of west Africa and to also take it to the various high schools in Liberia.

he also stated that they’re trying  to strike a partnership with Sierra leone, where players from sierra leone will come to Liberia to play as well as Liberians go to sierra leone to play, he went further by saying the scrabble competition is open to every young Liberian wishing to be part of the competition especially girls.

that he is excited about the win this friendly.   But he said that his 12 man team still have a lot of work to do.

“We are transitioning (learning) from the official Scrabble dictionary to the Collins Dictionary.  The Collins Dictionary is the one that is used all over the world.”

The team now looks to the future.  Introducing the game to the youth and playing the National Scrabble Association of Nigeria.

“The game itself is educational.  It helps our children learn and grow their vocabulary.   Our intentional is to take this ordinary board game to a recognized sport in this country.  The best way to do that is to make young people a part of this so they can develop the game further. “

Mr. Asgill also encourages all high schoolers to make use of this opportunity and be a part of the Scrabble club.

Twenty-four-year-old Josbin Nicka is the youngest player of NSASL.  He’s been playing the game for the last two years and said that he loves the game.

“I encourage young people to take the opportunity to learn and play the game.   For me, my vocabulary has improved and so has my spelling skills.”

J Lemuel Gibson, 27, is the youngest player on the Liberia National Scrabble team.  He is also the top player of the tournament with 19 wins and 8 losses.   He’s been playing for nine years.   Lemuel learned the game from his father, Philips Gibson.

“I grew up watching games and playing scrabble,” he said.  “Playing scrabble became a lifestyle for me the top player of the tournament, which he won the tournament with 19 wins and 8 losses. 

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About Cholo Brooks 15387 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.

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