AN ORFORD Scrabble champion has claimed the top spot in a tournament to raise money for the NHS.

Wayne Kelly took part in the Tournament of Champions organised by Scopely, the mobile games company behind Scrabble GO and the Association of British Scrabble Players, in support of NHS Charities Together.

The Tournament of Champions pits eight elite UK Scrabble players in head-to-head Scrabble GO matches to show fans of the game how the pros strategise and spell their way to the top.

Every participant of the tournament earned a £1,000 donation to NHS Charities Together, with the top-three players earning significant donations in their name.

Wayne, who was the 2011 UK national champion, earned the grand prize donation of £10,000, defeating runner-up and reigning UK national champion Phil Robertshaw of Nailsea who earned £3,000.

The tournament matches featured analysis and commentary from experts Will Anderson, the 2017 North American Scrabble champion, and Cornelia Guest, a nationally ranked US player and tournament director.

Breaking down each players’ moves and the strategies behind them, the Tournament of Champions pulled back the curtain on the world of elite Scrabble, giving fans of the game a chance to learn from Britain’s best.

Mike Whiteoak, chair of the Association of British Scrabble Players, said: "The ABSP is proud to be participating in Scrabble GO's Tournament of Champions to benefit NHS Charities Together, a cause near and dear to all of our hearts.

"Especially now in this time of great need, we are thrilled to be able to play the game we love and give back to our communities across the UK."

Ellie Orton, chief executive, NHS Charities Together, added: "Thank you Scopely, Scrabble GO, and the Association of British Scrabble Players for bringing people together from afar over a beloved pastime to support NHS Charities Together.

"We have been so moved by the support we have received in response to our Covid-19 Urgent Appeal, and every donation helps us make a difference in supporting the NHS staff, volunteers and patients impacted by coronavirus."