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Ron King
Asa Long

Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts

The summer of 2003 presented the Bajan King with another challenge to his GAYP World Title. Before the event took place, both checkers masters appeared extremely confident about individual checkerboard skills, however, King commented that "Jack will never be a world champion" in the middle of his title match against Francis. Confident or perhaps a little too confident of playing techniques?!

Jack Francis, then 42, had finished ninth in the 2002 3-Move Checkers Draughts Nationals and third in the 2001 GAYP Nationals, whereas Ron King, 47, had won various International and National checkers draughts tournaments and had previously held both the World 3-Move and GAYP titles concurrently. In fact, the Bajan King is the only person to have held both titles at the same time, and this could well be the reason for the champion’s arrogance toward his compatriot and worthy opponent.

Dunnottar Castle, Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire

Dunnottar Castle, Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire
World GAYP Title in Bridgetown, Barbados

Ronald "Suki" King defended his World GAYP Title against checkers challenger and fellow Barbadian, Jack Francis, by a score of 1-0-22, though Ron has been known to tell sources that he won the match with a score of two wins, no losses, and twenty-one draws. The match took place in Barbados and was in some ways a historical even on the checkers stage because it marked the first time that two players from Barbados competed against one another for a World Championship. King has successfully defended his GAYP title ever since obtaining it in 1991, but will his good fortune stand or will he some day meet his ‘checkers match’, so to speak?

A couple of months later, the checkers GM from Barbados was to face another challenger across the world championship checkerboard. This time Ron King would be defending his 3-Move Checkers Draughts World Title against GM Alex Moiseyev from Dublin, Ohio. Ron King's 2003 3-Move World Title Match against Alex Moiseyev was his eleventh such match, which was a record that exceeded the achievements of any other player in the history of the checkers game.

When negotiations for the match had just begun, there was a consideration for part of the competition to be played in Northern Ireland and the other half in Barbados. Of course, at that time, this was just speculation. The final decision was to host this prestigious event in Cookstown, County Tyrone in Northern Ireland, as part of the Irish International Festival of Checkers Draughts from October 13-31, 2003. The Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts festival consisted of several events but the World Championship Match was undoubtedly the most momentous Checkers Draughts event of the year for the local community.

Getting Ready To Play Checkers Draughts

Checkers players traveled from various parts of the world including USA, New Zealand, Barbados, and Turkmenistan. Apart from notable players like Ron King, Alex Moiseyev, and Hugh Devlin, the Durdyev family from Turkmenistan also held court as being very strong checkers contenders. They presented themselves as a very talented family of Checkers Draughts players where the youngest, Bashim, was only 13 and his sister Amungul was 15, the Olympic Junior Champion, was already considered as a serious challenger for the Women’s 3-Move title. Their older brother Mustafa was the British and Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts freestyle or GAYP champion and could also be seen as a serious future contender for the World Title in either 3-Move or GAYP. Perhaps even the other brothers might develop into strong Grandmasters ready to challenge the World Title holder at any time.

Carlough Harbour, near Cookstown
Carlough Harbor, near Cookstown
County Tyrone, Northern Ireland
County Tyrone, Northern Ireland
Surrounding Tyrone County Northern Ireland
Surrounding Tyrone County Northern Ireland
Surrounding Tyrone County 2
Surrounding Tyrone County Northern Ireland
Surrounding Tyrone County 3
Surrounding Tyrone County Northern Ireland

Ron King was the first checkers Challenger for the World 3-Move Title to get the right to face the then World Champion by winning a qualifying tournament held by the WCDF. At that time, Ron won the title, and had held it since 1991. Now Alex and Ron competed for this undisputed World Championship Checkers Draughts Title at the festival in 2003, and it was the third World Championship Match played between the two checkers Grandmaster players. This time, however, the Fates were on Moiseyev’s side of the checkerboard as he won the coveted World Checkers title from King. The checkers competition proved to offer an exciting match with a high caliber of checkers play. Alex’s final score over Ron was eight wins, two losses, and twenty-five draws.

The former World 3-Move checkers champion did not let the loss of this match affect his cross board techniques in the masters division of the Ireland Open Draughts Tournament that followed immediately after his games with Moiseyev. Ron proceeded to show the local spectators around the checkers stage his mastery of this mind sport by winning the championship over his compatriot, Jack Francis, and becoming the Ireland Open Checkers Draughts Champion for 2003. King’s final score was 29 points, Jack Francis placed second with 27 points, and Mustafa Durdyev finished in third with 25 points.

Ireland Checkers Winners

Irish Open Tournament Winners
Bashim Durdyev (Intermediate), Ron King (Masters), and Mick O`Shaughnessey (Senior)

The Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts Open had attracted 88 top-level entrants who were divided into four checkers divisions: 21 in Masters, 22 in Seniors, 37 in Intermediates, and 8 in Novice. This was a definite statement that the mind sport was not a ‘dead’ game.
Another important event that took place during the Irish Festival of Checkers and Draughts was the World Conference to create the World Checkers & Draughts Federation for American Checkers Federations and Associations.

George Checkers and Jim

Pictured from left to right: (Back Row) George Miller (England), Jim Summers (Ireland), Erskine Baine (Barbados), John Morgan (Wales), and Hugh Devlin (Ireland);
(Front Row) Ian Caws (England), Graham Young (Scotland), Lisle Cormier (USA), Charles Walker (USA), Alan Millhone (USA), and Ron King (Barbados).

On October 26, 2003, a World Checkers and Draughts Conference was held at the Greenvale Hotel in Cookstown, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. The meeting was represented by organizations and individuals from countries wherein the American style of checkers, 164 square checkerboard, was played. Selected members or players from Barbados, England, the Netherlands, Ireland, New Zealand, Turkmenistan, USA, Scotland, and Wales were present. The purpose of the conference was to bring together representatives from various countries to discuss the formation of a new World governing body for the Anglo-American style of checkers and draughts.
Hugh Devlin of Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts chaired the meeting and the discussion focused on the need to find a progressive way to unite draughts/checkers throughout the world. The meeting was attended by Pieter Hildering (FMJD), John Reade (FMJD), Alan Millhone (ACF), Erskine Bayne (BDA), Ian Caws (EDA), Ron King (BDCF), Charles Walker (ICHF), B. Murray (IDA), Francis McNally (NFD), Graham Young (SDA), Hoja Durdevey (Turkmenistan), Jan Mortimer (New Zealand), and George Miller (EDA). Delegates were also present from the IDA, NFD, NWDF, and the SDA. It was felt that it was imperative to bring unity to both Federations and Associations that promoted checkers and draughts if progress was to be made in the 21st century. In order to accomplish this task, all members agreed to form a new world governing body that would be made up of representatives of Draughts and Checkers organizations rather than of individual countries.

A second part to the conference was held on October 28, 2003, to further the specific rules and by-laws that would represent this new organization. The conference members voted to change the name to the World Checkers and Draughts Federation (WCDF), and an election of officers was held as follows:


Charles Walker


United States

First Vice President

Erskine Bayne



Second Vice President

Ron King


Barbados Official


Ian Caws




George Miller


England Official

First PRO

Alan Millhone


United States Official

Second PRO

Jan Mortimer


New Zealand

A revised set of statutes was accepted by all present and would become effective immediately upon conclusion of the checkers draughts conference assemblage.

Checkers Game in the West Indies The Bajan Checkers Team Northern Ireland Checkers Draughts 2006 Checkers At Stonehaven Ron King
Checkers Champion Ricardo Pierre Haiti Checkers Champion John (Jack) Francis Barbados Draughts and Checkers World Checkers Champion Alex Moiseyev Alan
Checkers Champion Shang Wong Louiceus Checkers Champion Ronald “Suki” King Checkers Game World Title Match Irish Checkers Champion In Action
Checkers Champion Dickson Maughn Checkers Game 3 Move Title Checkers Champion 3 Move Tournament Checkers Champion Kondlo

DeerLake Online Store Items

Wonder Mugs Play checkers online, and enjoy drinking from this cool wonder mug.
When adding hot liquid, the colors of the mug will change, checkers cool.

Checkers is a two-player game, where one player is assigned white-chip checkers and the other red. The aim is to play checkers online, capture all of the other player's checkers or make them impossible to move.

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