Ramki Krishnan scores a hat trick at National Crossword contest
Patna: Ramki Krishnan of Chennai on Sunday scored a hat-trick at the grand finale of the Indian Crossword League (IXL)’ 2016, and won the coveted National Champion Crossword trophy in Bengaluru. Vinoo Sanjay of Mumbai came second.
In an online-offline format, top-of-the-board contestants after online weekly rounds battled it out at an offline Grand Finale at a hotel near old Airport Road in the IT capital of India, Bengaluru.
The winners of two offshore offline rounds in Toronto and New Jersey, Ritesh Prasad and Mohit Mittal respectively, who had earlier earned direct entry to the Grand Finale, could not make it due to prior engagements. The grand finale comprised a written preliminary round. The top six contestants them competed in the on stage final in the PowerPoint format.
Besides Ramki Krishnan and Vinoo Sanjay, the other finalists were Srividya Krishnaswamy (Singapore), Arvind Ramaswamy (Pune), Abhay Phadnis (Chennai) and Jose Abreu (Mumbai).
Ochintya Sharma, former India head of Samsung’s mobile phone division and an avid quizzer, was the Cross Master, who conducted the on-stage round. As many as 16 qualifiers from the online preliminary rounds reached the venue in time to make a bid for the trophy.
“The IXL has brought about a renaissance of crosswords in the country and created a unique fraternity. It not only provided a quality pastime to people of all ages and occupations but also honed lateral thinking, knowledge acquisition and vocabulary building,” Vivek Kumar Singh, senior IAS officer of Bihar and Chief Mentor, IXL 2016, said.
Addressing the audience and the participants chief guest and Karnataka Police chief Om Prakash said, “IXL is a brilliant initiative to create a knowledge society and also to showcase India’s intellectual capital before the world”. Mr Rajendra Kataria (IAS), MD, KSRTC, was the Guest of Honour.
The winner of the inaugural IXL edition in 2013 was Col (retd) Deepak Gopinath who later became the Chief Arbiter of the contest in subsequent years. Chennai-based Ramki Krishnan won the IXL 2014 and the IXL 2015 editions held in Mumbai and Kolkata respectively.