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In pictures: The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge





The English Tiddlywinks Association’s National Pairs competition was held at Downing College at the weekend – very fitting, it turns out, as Cambridge played a key role in developing the ‘grown-up’ version of the game.

The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham

Sarah Knight, publicity officer at the English Tiddlywinks Association (ETwA) – and a Cambridge graduate herself – explained: “Most people are familiar with tiddlywinks as the children’s game, where you’re trying to just flick little plastic counters into a pot. What we play is the sort of grown-up version of the game, which was invented in 1955 in Cambridge.

The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham

“There were a group of undergraduates who basically wanted to invent a sport that they could beat Oxford at, and they thought this could be the way to do it.

“So they developed a set of really quite complex rules – so I guess one of the most major differences with the children’s game is you can capture your opponents counters, or ‘winks’ as we call them.”

The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham
The National Tiddlywinks Pairs competition at Downing College, Cambridge. Picture: Richard Marsham

The National Pairs competition has been taking place since 1972. This year’s winners were Patrick Driscoll and Andy Purvis.

For more on the ETwA, visit etwa.org.



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