The New Masters for 2023

How the Masters event is run is governed by the Australian Masters committee (you can see who they are here)

Australian Masters 2023

The Masters Committee were set the task of increasing national interest in the Masters as an event. The Masters exists at all due to the prior work of Ken Ferris and the new committee are looking to build upon his good work to make an inclusive event that anybody can strive to participate in.

With that in mind, the Committee felt that something could be added to the event to bring another layer of interest. Something else to compete for other than just being the Master. Therefore we are bringing you a fairly significant shake up to the event and we hope you like it. Depending on success there is nothing stopping the Committee making further adjustments in future years. This format was given unanimous approval by the Committee.

The Australian Masters 2023 will introduce TEAMS.  Whilst some of the detail is still to be worked out, here are the existing details.

This years event will be:

  • TWO days, 5 games
  • 16 players – Teams of 3 with teams from NSW, QLD, ACT, VIC and “The Rest”. “The Rest” team is made up of the top ranked from the other states/territories not mentioned who currently have with smaller scenes.
  • The previous Master will make the 16th player and stands apart as a bastion of gaming strength
  • There will be a side event for those wanting to come with their team or play from the local area
  • It will be held in Canberra giving the options of both driving or flying for the majority of the group
  • The event will not only decide the Master, but the best state, the best hobby state and more!
  • Games will still be based on individual pairings. You will avoid your own team for at least one round.
  • The 2023 “Season” will end 14th October 2023, with Masters aiming to take place the 11th and 12th November, 2023. This has been brought forward further than previous years to bring it further away from the holiday season.
How do you qualify for your team?
  • It is still decided on based on the rankings
  • The top 3 ranked players from each state qualify for the team
  • A player that has won an auto-qualifier automatically occupies a spot on that team (pending them having attended 3 tournaments)
  • If one of the top 3 players passes on the opportunity then the next ranked player is selected. If this happens more than twice, then from the third occasion onwards the team gets to decide the remaining player who will be a “Mercenary” and may be selected from any State (dependent on having attended 3 tournaments)


Why the move to including teams?

The committee felt that this was a way to increase the “fun” side of the event without detracting form the high-level play. We hope that introducing team aspects will help the Masters to be seen more favourably by the wider community. It is important to remember the games are not run as teams but still individual pairings.

Why two days?

Numerous players mentioned to the Committee that they preferred a two day tournament to justify the effort of travel and cost.

If an auto-qualifier occupies a spot, is that fair?

This has always been the way so we decided to leave it as is. Analysis of previous years shows that most auto-qualifiers would have qualified on rankings anyway.

Why 5 games and 16 players?

Again, feedback was that the smaller number of players made it less desirable and a more intimidating competition. By increasing the player numbers we are hoping to not only increase interest but create a wider pool of players being exposed to high-level gameplay. 

5 games allows 3 on day one giving plenty of time to complete it and not having time-frames too short but still allows earlier leaving for those travelling on Day 2. 

Depending on the scoring system 5 games will also potentially even out some more uneven results 

5 games also gives us the opportunity to grow to up 32 players if the scene were to grow without changing the format and would still get us a clear winner on games.

So each player in a team must have attended 3 tournaments?

Yes. The only Masters player exempt from this is the previous Master.