All decisions of the Tournament Director (TD) on disputes or clarification of rules are final.
STARTING THE GAME
1.1 It is the responsibility of both players to determine that there are 100 correct tiles before commencing play. If an incorrect number or incorrect distribution is discovered later, the game has to go on till the end.
1.2 Drawing tiles: for each game, player with the letter closest to the start of the alphabet goes first. A blank is considered to come before an "A". Player who is to go second returns the tiles to the bag.
1.3 When the first player has taken seven tiles out of the bag, the time clock may be started.
2.1 The time allotted is 25 minutes each player. 1 hour for each game. Overtime penalty: 10 points will be deducted for each minute or part thereof if player exceeded the allotted 25 minutes. A digital clock (timer) is overtime if -0.01 is shown.
2.2 If a player is not there on time, the Tournament Director starts that person's clock running until the player arrives.
3.1 Each player must keep score by writing down both players' scores for their moves and both players' cumulative scores, before making his/her next move.If player continues to not record scores and totals, player is to complete the required record of scores with his/her clock running. This may occur during or at the end of the game.
3.2 An error in the score for a move or cumulative score may be corrected at any time until the result sheet/s has been signed by both players.
3.3 Players must neutralise the clock while resolving a discrepancy.
4.1 Hold the tile bag at eye level so that no tiles in the bag can be seen. Remove tiles in full view of your opponent.
4.2 Draw tiles one by one. All drawn tiles must be placed face down on the table before putting on your rack.
4.3 (Drawing too many tiles) If you discover that you have too many tiles, you must place all the newly drawn tiles face down on the table and invite your opponent to remove the excess tile(s).
If it is your opponent who discovers that you have too many tiles, you must display your rack while they choose the excess tile(s) to be removed.
In each case, both players must see the tile(s) before they are returned to the bag.
4.4 (Drawing too few tiles) If you have too few tiles, you must draw the rest from whatever tiles are in the bag at that stage, even if your opponent has drawn tiles already.
MAKING YOUR MOVE
5.1 You must, in this order:
a. place the tiles on the board.
b. announce the score for the move.
c. press the time clock.
d. write down the score for the move.
e. Opponent should challenge or announce 'hold' within 20 sec of the clock being pressed. Opponent cannot challenge once he has written down the move score
f. draw replacement tiles.
Your turn is over when you have pressed the clock. Your turn is also over if after placing your word on the board and announcing the score for the move you start drawing tiles from the bag, regardless of whether the clock has been pressed or not.
5.2 No allowance can be made for mistakes due to poorly aligned tiles discovered after a move has been accepted, as signaled by the opponent writing down the score for the move.
5.3 In your turn only, you may:
· straighten letters on the board
· ask your opponent to confirm the cumulative score.
6.1 You may change tiles as many times as you wish during a game, as long as there are at least seven tiles in the bag.
6.2 Tiles can only be changed during your move.
6.3 To change tiles you must
a. check that there are at least seven tiles in the bag.
b. announce that you are changing tiles.
c. state how many tiles you are changing.
d. place the stated number of tiles face down on the table.
e. press the time clock.
f. record the change on the score sheet.
g. transfer the required number from the bag to your rack.
h. return the unwanted tiles to the bag.
7. You may pass (i.e. miss a turn without changing tiles) during a game. A pass scores zero.
8.1 You may challenge a word or words, word placement, or the legality of an exchange.
8.2 To challenge a word or words
a. wait until your opponent has finished their turn. b. warn your opponent not to draw tiles if you are considering a challenge/call 'hold' to stop opponent from drawing tiles. c say challenge. d neutralize the clock. e refrain from writing down the score for the move (refer Rule 5.1) f write down the word(s) and table number on a challenge slip and show your opponent that it has been written accurately. g hold up the challenge slip or call “challenge” or take the slip for adjudication.
8.3 If you are challenging word placement or the legality of an exchange, call the TD.
8.4 When a word is challenged both players must cover their tiles until the challenge slip is returned.
8.5 If your opponent has drawn tiles before you have written down the score for their move, you may still challenge. In this case if the move is adjudicated as invalid, you should treat the tiles drawn as excess tiles, and remove them as in Rule 4.3, and your opponent then puts the tiles they had played back on their rack.
8.6 Once the clock has been neutralized, the challenge may be neither conceded nor retracted.
8.7 When the challenge slip is returned, both players must see it. Either player may query the decision and ask that the slip be returned for re-adjudication. You must not leave your table to argue the case.
8.8 If the word is disallowed, the player takes back the tiles played and misses their turn.
8.9 If the move is allowed, play continues with no penalty to the challenger.
8.10 You may challenge only once in a turn, but that challenge may include one or more words, as you wish. Words challenged together receive a single decision: if all words challenged are acceptable, the move is allowed; if at least one word challenged is not acceptable, the move is disallowed.
8.11 If any word on the challenge slip does not correspond to words made on the board for that turn, the challenge slip may be resubmitted with the correctly recorded words.
ENDING THE GAME
9.1 If you have used all your tiles in an accepted move and the bag is empty, the value of the tiles on your opponent’s rack is doubled and added to your total score. Neutralise the time clock on completion of the final move.
9.2 The game ends automatically if six successive scores of zero occur, obtained from passes, successful challenges or tile exchanges. The value of the tiles on each person’s rack is subtracted from their total score.
9.3a If the end of time for play is announced, you may complete your move only if you have started to put tiles on the board by the end of the announcement. If your rack is not full and there are tiles in the bag, you must replenish your rack as usual. Then the value of tiles on each person’s rack is subtracted from their total score.
9.3b If you go over time, you will be penalised 10 points per minute or part thereof. This penalty is deducted from your total score but not added to your opponent’s score. A digital clock is not in overtime until –0:01 is shown.
9.4. If a tile is discovered outside the bag (e.g. on the floor, under the board) at any time during the game and before the result sheet/s have been signed, the procedure is as follows:
Both players see the tile, and it is placed in the bag.
Any tiles which players had removed from their racks, thinking play was over, are replaced on the racks. Then proceed in this way:
a. If both players have 7 tiles on their racks, play resumes.
b. If only one player has fewer than 7 tiles on the rack, that player then draws from the bag and play resumes.
c. If both players have fewer than 7 tiles on their racks, players determine (while the time clocks are neutralised) which one should have drawn replacement tiles earliest; that player then draws from the bag and play resumes. However,
d. If after the appropriate player has drawn from the bag, only one player now has tiles on the rack, the game is over and the result is recalculated as necessary.
9.5 The onus is on both players to verify that the bag is empty. If tiles are discovered in the bag (which players had thought to be empty) before the results sheet has been signed, the procedure is as follows:
a. If one player has seen the tile/s, it is shown to the other player.
b. Any unplayed tiles which players have removed from their racks, thinking play was over, are replaced on the racks.
c. Players determine (while time clocks are neutralised) who should have drawn replacement tiles first. This player then adds the tile/s to their rack.
d. If both players still have tiles, play resumes. If only one player now has tiles on their rack, the game is over and the result is recalculated.
9.6 The game is finished when both players have signed the result slip to show that they have agreed on the final total scores. Before this, the tiles may not be moved. No changes can be made if unused tiles are discovered after the result slip have been signed by both players.
9.7 After the result slip have been signed, you should check that both players’ names have been written clearly. The winner must submit the result slip to the official scorers promptly. The loser must arrange the tiles in a 10x10 square.
PLAYERS’ RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
1 No dictionaries, word lists, or similar may be consulted by players during the game. The official reference for adjudication at tournaments is as approved .
2 Personalised score sheets are allowed. However, all papers brought to the table, including separate tile-tracking sheets, may be examined by the opponent before the game.
3 The onus is on each player to be familiar with the rules and to know when adjudication is required. If players are unsure of the rule which applies to a particular situation, they should consult the TD immediately for clarification. A player who suspects that an opponent has violated a rule should consult the TD immediately. The TD will attempt to determine if a deliberate act to violate the rules has occurred, or if it was a mistake. The TD may impose an appropriate ruling or suitable penalty.
4 Players must be courteous, and not distract opponents or other players in any way. Players must avoid unduly obstructing opponents' view of the board. Observers may watch discreetly, subject to acceptance of the players. They may not distract, interfere with, or influence other players. Clocks may be neutralised while observers are dispersed. The TD may declare a game forfeit. This may occur when a player has abandoned a game, committed a flagrant breach of rules, or arrived too late to play the game