The first matches of the Belgian Individual Championship 2013 were played on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th of December, 2012, in Leuven and in Hasselt. Detailed results are available in an on-line spreadsheet.
Recall that there are 18 participants divided in 3 groups, 6 players per group. The format within each group is round-robin, everybody plays everybody. Winner of a match between two players is the first one to win three 11-pointers. A match may therefore take up to five sets to 11 points. Time control for an 11-pointer is Bronstein, 22 minutes bank time plus 12 seconds per move.
Paul van Dijke (group B) en Paulus van Rooijen (group A) travelled to Leuven to meet with Marius Hentea and Zsolt Tasnadi. Paul en Marius played three sets, Marius winning the first one but Paul winning the two others, leaving the outcome of the match undecided. Paulus and Zsolt played three sets too; Paulus won the first two sets, but Zsolt, fighting for survival, took the third set. The two other encounters on Friday evening were Patrick De Wilde versus Akbar Soltani (group A, 2-0) and Guy Van Middelem versus Fakhri Salasi (group B, 2-0). Guy had a busy backgammon weekend: on Saturday he travelled to Hasselt to meet Walter Meuwis. Walter took the lead, winning the first two sets, but Guy did not surrender and won the third one.
Five matches have been started, but none of them has already been brought to a conclusion. From this experience, it’s a safe bet that most matches will take two (or more) sessions. Since each player has five matches to play, one should count on about ten sessions, which is a bit more than one per month until the deadline of September 30, 2013. Seems like BIC 2013 is gonna be a tough tournament!