News - May 31, 2011

Meurs came in tenth at World Cup debut

Coming in tenth was the best that Pim Meurs could achieve at the World Checkers Championship which ended last weekend. 'I should have done better against the weaker players.'

Pim Meurs during the tournament in Urk.
For three weeks, Pim Meurs was confined to Emmeloord and Urk, the cities where the World Checkers Championship took place. He ate and slept in a hotel in Emmeloord and played 19 matches over 22 days. Each match lasted about five hours. The rest of the day was spent in a leisurely manner. A bit of football with fellow contestants, and even some swimming. Every day, he went hiking for two hours with the coach and other members of the Dutch team as relaxation. 'We tried not to talk about checkers then.'
Meurs won two matches; the rest ended in draws. 'I would have liked to win more', says Meurs. 'The best checkers players are from Russia and the Netherlands. I should have done better against the weaker players. Those matches would have made the difference.'
Meurs is not quite satisfied with coming in tenth out of twenty contestants. 'This was my first world championship, and my first 3-week long tournament. I wouldn't forget the feeling of excitement, the preparations and the bouncing back in between. But I would have loved to end up among the top eight; that would have given me a better status at NOC*NSF. I will get another chance in July in a world cup tournament in Russia.'
Girl friend
There wasn't any homeground advantage, says this Wageningen student of Food Technology. 'It wouldn't have mattered much where the tournament took place.' However, his family and girlfriend could go to watch him frequently. 'But not every day, mind you. They had to work and attend school as usual.'