Gemma was in Hannover (quite a while ago)

First of all, I apologize that this report is old news now. I’m going to try and use preparation for my trip to Japan as my excuse. However, considering that I packed the night before I left in a mad panic, it’s not a particularly good excuse…

If I’m honest with myself, it’s probably because it was really not a good performance from me at all. Generally I’ve found the most recent tournaments hard and I wish I could find a solid reason for that. Apart from lack of practice, ignoring the strategy in the books I read etc etc

Okay so we know why I’m rubbish. I guess I just need to tell you how rubbish I was… Well I spent most of the tournament skimming along the bottom of the table, only finally managing to crawl up to 23rd (total of 28 players).

I really, really want to say it was luck. It wasn’t. I was rubbish. I didn’t play well and I made bad choices. This, combined with the problem that all the people I played were really good, meant I lost a lot of points!

I’m going to try and blame nagare. (If you’re not sure what nagare is, you should check out the podcast archive.) I get into these phases which I find hard to break out of. If I’m losing, I just lose. If I’m winning, I just win. These phases go with hands as well. I keep a record of hands I get or nearly get to see what sort of patterns there are in my play. Some weeks all I seem to get are half flushes. Other weeks I just get three-colored-runs. I guess what I really need to do is find a way of breaking the run by…winning!

However, the issue I have is that the worse I’m losing, the more need for a massive hand to make it up. The bigger the hands I’m going for, the more risk. Soooo the more I lose… I need to break the nagare with some cheap wins. That’s going to be my strategy next time. I’ll apologize in advance to the people on my table when I try this.

Apart from me, the tournament went really well. Two home players took the first two places. First went to Richard Stöckemann. Second to Michael Zahradnik. Martin Rep at took third. What is remarkable about these three places is that there was around 50k points between each of those positions. That is a huge difference. I’ve often seen the top few places being very close. I don’t think I’ve seen them so far apart.

The organization was also excellent and the location was amazing. It was my first time at the mahjong pub – Kaiser. It was great to hang back after thr tournament, play some casual games and chat with players. They also do amazing currywurst so I recommend that.

Overall an excellent weekend. However, there is one thing that could make it better – More German riichi players! The German Mahjong League (DMJL) is trying to expand their player base. So if you’re in Germany and play mahjong, please contact them! Their website is: If you’re a player in Frankfurt, you can also contact me. I also need new friends to play with!

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