interplanetary knock-out

This is the System-wide competition in which teams from the various worlds and zones all try to out-fascinate their opponents in the view of the judges.

The object of the game, called Hits Interplanetary (HI), is to be as interesting as possible. 

Teams from all over the System parade around Ceres' Grand Stadium trying to look and sound interesting.  They can do this either by following updated versions of Edward de Bono's How to be Interesting, or by flaunting their physical attributes (length and flexibility of tentacle, or whatever), or by direct mental coercion of the judges.

The list of champions, month by month, is displayed in the Hall of Fame.

[For discussion of the first seven months' clashes, see the OSS Diary for 27th March 2017.  For the first twenty months, see the Diary for 26th April 2018.]

Note: a record score in the competition was achieved by the Ionian team in the first round of January 2018 - a score of 82 hits during the five days of 1-5 January.  (Previous record 52 hits, scored by the Venusians in the semi-finals of August 2017.) 

>> latest:


august 2018

first round, 1-5 august 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  39    vs.     no.17 seed:  Amalthea  31

no.9 seed:  Vulcan  25      vs.      no.25 seed:  Ariel  7  

no.5 seed:  Saturn  25      vs.     no.21 seed:  The Reefs of Space  21

no.13 seed:  Asteroid Progenitor  17     vs.     no. 29 seed:  Leda  14 

no.3 seed: Jupiter  34      vs.     no.19 seed:  Iapetus  16

no.11 seed:  The Moon  22     vs      no.27 seed:  Io  9  

no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  25     vs.     no.23 seed:  Callisto  13  

no.15 seed:  Pluto  19      vs.     no.31 seed:  Ceres  8   

no.2 seed:  Venus  38       vs.      no.18 seed:  Comets  13   

no.10 seed:  The Sun  34      vs       no.26 seed:  Oberon  8   

no.6 seed:  The Asteroids  27      vs.      no.22 seed:   Ganymede  9 

no.14 seed:  Neptune  23      vs.     no.30 seed:  Titania  8    

no. 4 seed:  Mercury  26     vs.      no.20 seed:  Triton  32

no.12 seed:  Earth  24      vs.     no.28 seed:  Umbriel  2 

no.8 seed:  Titan  17      vs.     no.24 seed:  Europa  14

no.16 seed:  Uranus  24      vs.     no.32 seed:  Styx  6

Last month's first-round shock was the Comets' victory over Venus; this time the Venusians - paired again with the Comets - had their revenge, while the role of 'shocked' went to the Mercurians, who lost to Triton.

second round, 6-10 august 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  34    vs.     no.9 seed:  Vulcan  14     

no.5 seed:  Saturn  26      vs.     no.13 seed:  Asteroid Progenitor  13    

no.3 seed: Jupiter  24      vs.     no.11 seed:  The Moon  12     

no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  19     vs.     no.15 seed:  Pluto  9      

no.2 seed:  Venus  22       vs.      no.10 seed:  The Sun  16       

no.6 seed:  The Asteroids  31      vs.      no.14 seed:  Neptune  14      

no.20 seed:  Triton  18      vs.     no.12 seed:  Earth  15     

no.8 seed:  Titan  17      vs.     no.16 seed:  Uranus  15     

quarter-finals, 11-15 august 2018; results out 16 aug:

no.1 seed:  Mars      vs.     no.5 seed:  Saturn 

no.3 seed: Jupiter        vs.     no.7 seed:  Pellucidar 

no.2 seed:  Venus       vs.      no.6 seed:  The Asteroids 

no.20 seed:  Triton        vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan     

Latest:

After the first day's play:

Mars  6    Saturn  2
Jupiter  6    Pellucidar  1
Venus  7    The Asteroids  1
Triton  0    Titan  3

After the second day's play:

Mars  9    Saturn  3
Jupiter  7    Pellucidar  2
Venus  9    The Asteroids  5
Triton  0    Titan  6

After the third day's play:

Mars  15    Saturn  5
Jupiter  8    Pellucidar  4
Venus  11    The Asteroids  9
Triton  3    Titan  7


july 2018

first round, 1-5 july 2018; results out 6 july:

no.1 seed:  Mars  39    vs.     no.17 seed:  Asteroid Progenitor Planet  13 

no.9 seed:  The Moon  11      vs.      no.25 seed:  Io  4

no.5 seed:  Saturn  19     vs.     no.21 seed:  Callisto  7

no.13 seed:  Iapetus  6     vs.     no. 29 seed:  Titania   4

no.3 seed: Titan  15     vs.     no.19 seed:  Amalthea  5

no.11 seed:  Earth  11     vs      no.27 seed:  Oberon  5

no.7 seed:  Mercury  11     vs.     no.23 seed:  Triton  9

no.15 seed:  The Reefs of Space  8     vs.     no.31 seed:  Cerberus  2

no.2 seed:  Jupiter  16      vs.      no.18 seed:  Uranus  12   

no.10 seed:  Pellucidar  12      vs       no.26 seed:  Ceres  1 

no.6 seed:  The Sun  9      vs.      no.22 seed:   Ganymede  8

no.14 seed:  Neptune  11     vs.     no.30 seed:  Ariel  4 

no. 4 seed:  Venus  10     vs.      no.20 seed:  Comets  12

no.12 seed:  Vulcan  10      vs.     no.28 seed:  Pallas  4 

no.8 seed:  The Asteroids  14      vs.     no.24 seed:  Europa  4

no.16 seed:  Pluto  17     vs.     no.32 seed:  Styx  3

Venus beaten by the Comets - whatever next!!  Meanwhile, the Martians surge early; maybe too early, unless they can keep it up (as last month shows, it's the late surger who wins).

second round, 6-10 july 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  22    vs.     no.9 seed:  The Moon   

no.5 seed:  Saturn  19     vs.     no.13 seed:  Iapetus  5

no.3 seed:  Titan  11     vs.     no.11 seed:  Earth  8   

no.7 seed:  Mercury  16     vs.     no.15 seed:  The Reefs of Space  5   

no.2 seed:  Jupiter  19      vs.      no.10 seed:  Pellucidar  8      

no.6 seed:  The Sun  7      vs.      no.14 seed:  Neptune  2 

no.20 seed:  Comets  8     vs.     no.12 seed:  Vulcan  8     

no.8 seed:  The Asteroids  15      vs.     no.16 seed:  Pluto  7    

Replay necessary between Comets and Vulcan.

SECOND-ROUND REPLAY, 11 JULY 2018:
no.20 seed:  Comets  1     vs.     no.12 seed:  Vulcan  5

quarter-finals, 11-15 july 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars      vs.     no.5 seed:  Saturn      

no.3 seed:  Titan       vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury      

no.2 seed:  Jupiter       vs.      no.6 seed:  The Sun 

no.12 seed:  Vulcan      vs.     no.8 seed:  The Asteroids 

After the first day's play:

Mars  6    Saturn  4
Titan  4    Mercury  4
Jupiter  5    The Sun  3
Vulcan  5    The Asteroids  0

After the second day's play:

Mars  8    Saturn  5
Titan  6    Mercury  10
Jupiter  9    The Sun  13
Vulcan  6    The Asteroids  1

After the third day's play:

Mars  20    Saturn  10
Titan  9    Mercury  15
Jupiter  15    The Sun  20
Vulcan  16    The Asteroids  8

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  34    Saturn  13
Titan  13    Mercury  23
Jupiter  20    The Sun  25
Vulcan  23    The Asteroids  13

RESULTS OF THE QUARTER-FINALS, JULY 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  39     vs.     no.5 seed:  Saturn  16   

no.3 seed:  Titan  16      vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury  26    

no.2 seed:  Jupiter  25      vs.      no.6 seed:  The Sun  27

no.12 seed:  Vulcan  26      vs.     no.8 seed:  The Asteroids  15

semi-finals, 16-20 july 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury      

no.6 seed:  The Sun     vs.     no.12 seed:  Vulcan 

After the first day's play:

Mars  3    Mercury  3
The Sun  5    Vulcan  2

After the second day's play:

Mars  9    Mercury  9
The Sun  11    Vulcan  5

After the third day's play:

Mars  14    Mercury  11
The Sun  14    Vulcan  8

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  20    Mercury  13
The Sun  16    Vulcan  10

After the fifth day's play:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, 20 JULY 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  29      vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury  19     

no.6 seed:  The Sun  21    vs.     no.12 seed:  Vulcan  17

So, we're in for a Mars - Sun final. 

This is the Solarians' third successive final - a distinction previously achieved only by the Mercurians during November 2016 - January 2017.  The first of those finals was won by Mercury and it remains to be seen whether the Sun can win this one... against a Martian team which appears to have re-discovered its old power.

the final, 21-25 july 2018; result out 26 july:

no.1 seed:  Mars        vs.     no.6 seed:  The Sun 

After the first day's play:
Mars  5    The Sun  3

After the second day's play:
Mars  15    The Sun  7

After the third day's play:
Mars  28    The Sun  10

After the fourth day's play:
Mars  37    The Sun  12

After the fifth and last day's play:

FINAL RESULT, 25 JULY 2018

no.1 seed:  Mars  43     vs.     no.6 seed:  The Sun  13

So the winner of the 23rd Interplanetary Knock-Out championship, July 2018, is

Mars

Tars Tarkas, guaranteed to impress the crowd in Ceres Stadium (he is fifteen feet tall, after all), strode forth to hold up the trophy.  Martians intermingled their cheers with mutters of "About time, too" - it is nine months since the team last won the championship, and there is a feeling that this long delay is against the natural order of things.  The people of the Red Planet feel about the IKO as the Brazilians feel about the soccer World Cup - i.e. that a smashing victory is the very least they ought to expect.  (This one was smashing enough; 43 is the highest score ever achieved in an IKO Final.)  In the Martian view, therefore, it was high time they won it again, and moreover they ought now to win it again and again without further delay, so as to surpass those interlopers the Venusians who by some strange means have won more championships than the Martians.

The tall of trophies now is as follows:  6 for Venus, 5 for Mars, 4 for Mercury, 2 each for the Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn, and 1 each for Vulcan and Titan.

The poor Solarians, like the Dutch in the soccer World Cup, must endure being defeated finalists three times, with no trophies as yet.


june 2018

first round, 1-5 june 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  16      vs.     no.17 seed:  Pluto  14 

no.9 seed:  Saturn  25      vs.      no.25 seed:  Umbriel  5 

no.5 seed:  Mercury  20     vs.     no.21 seed:  Ganymede  8

no.13 seed:  Neptune  15     vs.     no. 29 seed:  Pallas  7  

no.3 seed:  The Sun  17     vs.     no.19 seed:  Comets   8

no.11 seed:  The Moon  16     vs      no.27 seed:  Oberon  7

no.7 seed:  Vulcan  20    vs.     no.23 seed:  Callisto  16  

no.15 seed:  Asteroid Progenitor Planet  11     vs.     no.31 seed:  Ariel  7

no.2 seed:  Venus  15      vs.      no.18 seed:  Iapetus  18  

no.10 seed:  Earth  11     vs       no.26 seed:  Ceres  10 

no.6 seed:  Jupiter  19     vs.      no.22 seed:  Triton  9

no.14 seed:  Uranus  9     vs.     no.30 seed:  Titania  10  

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  16    vs.      no.20 seed:  The Reefs of Space  8

no.12 seed:  Pellucidar  15     vs.     no.28 seed:  Io  8 

no.8 seed:  Titan  18     vs.     no.24 seed:  Europa  8

no.16 seed:  Amalthea  10     vs.     no.32 seed:  Styx  9

second round, 6-10 june 2018:

no.1 seed:  Mars  17    vs.     no.9 seed:  Saturn  18   

no.5 seed:  Mercury  15     vs.     no.13 seed:  Neptune  9    

no.3 seed:  The Sun  15   vs.     no.11 seed:  The Moon  14 

no.7 seed:  Vulcan  10    vs.     no.15 seed:  Asteroid Progenitor Planet  9    

no.18 seed:  Iapetus  7     vs.     no.10 seed:  Earth  17

no.6 seed:  Jupiter  17      vs.      no.30 seed:  Titania  0

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  16     vs.      no.12 seed:  Pellucidar  13

no.8 seed:  Titan  11      vs.     no.16 seed:  Amalthea  3

After the sensational Round One defeat of mighty Venus by Iapetus, Round Two has seen the further surprise of those same Iapetans' robust defeat by the Blue Planet, Earth.

quarter-finals, 11-15 june 2018:

no.9 seed:  Saturn      vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury      

no.3 seed:  The Sun       vs.     no.7 seed:  Vulcan      

no.10 seed:  Earth      vs.      no.6 seed:  Jupiter       

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids       vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan      

After the first day's play:

Saturn  2    Mercury  3
The Sun  3    Vulcan  2
Earth  1    Jupiter  4
The Asteroids  1    Titan  2

After the second day's play:

Saturn  4    Mercury  5
The Sun  6    Vulcan  4
Earth  2    Jupiter  7
The Asteroids  4    Titan  7

After the third day's play:

Saturn  6    Mercury  6
The Sun  10    Vulcan  7
Earth  6    Jupiter  12
The Asteroids  7    Titan  11

After the fourth day's play:

Saturn  14    Mercury  13
The Sun  14    Vulcan  12
Earth  9    Jupiter  21
The Asteroids  12    Titan  17

After the fifth day's play:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, JUNE 2018:

no.9 seed:  Saturn  15     vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury  16    

no.3 seed:  The Sun  16     vs.     no.7 seed:  Vulcan   14   

no.10 seed:  Earth  11    vs.      no.6 seed:  Jupiter  22     

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  14     vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan  19    

That Saturn-Mercury match was a cliff-hanging epic, with two overtakings.  Since Mercury won, we're in for a Mercury-Sun semi-final match with the same contestants as last month's final.

And now, for the time time since last September, we have a semi-final line-up which includes two teams who have not yet won the championship.

semi-finals, 16-20 june 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mercury     vs.     no.3 seed:  The Sun 

no.6 seed:  Jupiter       vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan 

After the first day's play:

Mercury  3    The Sun  2
Jupiter  3    Titan  2

After the second day's play:

Mercury  6    The Sun  5
Jupiter  11    Titan  6

After the third day's play:

Mercury  10    The Sun  9
Jupiter  16    Titan  30

Shock Titanic Surge Stuns System.

After the fourth day's play:

Mercury  13    The Sun  16
Jupiter  25    Titan  38

Another overtaking, in this unprecedentedly dramatic semi-final.  It looks as though, for the first time since February 2017 (i.e. fourteen competitions ago), we may get a final in which both teams have not previously won a trophy.  In other words, a final which is bound to give us a new first-time champion.  We shall shortly see...

It's worth noting, though, that the Mercurians - even if they get knocked out this round - can take satisfaction in having achieved the longest run of victories (13 in a row) in the history of the tournament.  (Venus, after winning two consecutive trophies in December 2016 and January 2017, got knocked out in the Feb quarter-finals; thus their run was 12 victories in a row.)

After the fifth day's play -

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, JUNE 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mercury  14     vs.     no.3 seed:  The Sun  24  

no.6 seed:  Jupiter  28     vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan  46  

So it has happened.  This result has really set the System buzzing.  Now we're in for a final in which, whatever happens, we'll have a new first-time champ.

Just goes to show - anything can happen when you get surges...

the final, 21-25 june 2018; result out 26 june:

no.3 seed:  The Sun      vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan 

After the first day's play:
The Sun  0    Titan  1

After the second day's play:
The Sun  5    Titan  8 

After the third day's play:
The Sun  10    Titan  10

After the fourth day's play:
The Sun  10    Titan  13

After the fifth and last day's play -

no.3 seed:  The Sun  13    vs.     no.8 seed:  Titan  14 

So the winner of the 22nd Interplanetary Knock-Out championship, June 2018, is

Titan

All the methane monsters are bubbling like mad, and snowy ant-like creatures cavorting in unison with them, plus a crowd of other Titanics of all shapes and sizes as all the OSS versions of that Saturnian moon join in to celebrate their momentous win.  The inhabitants of other moons are happy too, for this is the long-awaited occasion - the first time a satellite has won the championship.  Some doubters thought it would never happen, but here we are at Ceres Stadium applauding the furry Harper of Titan as it waves the System Trophy aloft.

Sure, the win was narrow - but so was their loss, likewise by just one point, in their final against Mars exactly a year ago.

The tally of trophies is now as follows: 6 for Venus, 4 each for Mercury and Mars, 2 each for the Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn, and 1 each for Vulcan and Titan.


may 2018

first round, 1-5 may 2018:

no.1 seed:  Venus  23     vs.     no.17 seed:  Neptune  13

no.9 seed:  Earth  16     vs.      no.25 seed:  Oberon  4

no.5 seed:  Jupiter  12    vs.     no.21 seed:  Ganymede  3 

no.13 seed:  Uranus  12    vs.     no. 29 seed:  Umbriel  5 

no.3 seed:  Mercury  14     vs.     no.19 seed:  Callisto  6 

no.11 seed:  Iapetus  11     vs      no.27 seed:  Ceres  5 

no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  14    vs.     no.23 seed:  Europa  4 

no.15 seed:  Titan  12     vs.     no.31 seed:  Ariel  2 

no.2 seed:  Mars  16     vs.      no.18 seed:  Amalthea  9 

no.10 seed:  The Moon  12     vs       no.26 seed:  Titania  3 

no.6 seed:  The Asteroids  17     vs.      no.22 seed:  Triton  11 

no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  7     vs.     no.30 seed:  Leda  3 

no. 4 seed:  Saturn  15    vs.      no.20 seed:  Comets  9

no.12 seed:  Vulcan  14      vs.     no.28 seed:  Pallas  5 

no.8 seed:  The Sun  12     vs.     no.24 seed:  Io  4 

no.16 seed:  Pluto  10    vs.     no.32 seed:  Styx  4
 

second round, 6-10 may 2018:

no.1 seed:  Venus  34     vs.     no.9 seed:  Earth  21    

no.5 seed:  Jupiter  25    vs.     no.13 seed:  Uranus  18    

no.3 seed:  Mercury  18     vs.     no.11 seed:  Iapetus  13     

no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  23    vs.     no.15 seed:  Titan  23     

no.2 seed:  Mars  29     vs.      no.10 seed:  The Moon  25     

no.6 seed:  The Asteroids  30     no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  16     

no. 4 seed:  Saturn  19    vs.      no.12 seed:  Vulcan  20     

no.8 seed:  The Sun  18     vs.     no.16 seed:  Pluto  16    

Re-play needed between Pellucidar and Titan after their unusually high-scoring draw...

SECOND-ROUND REPLAY, 11 MAY 2018:

no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  3    vs.     no.15 seed:  Titan  2

quarter-finals, 11-15 may 2018:

no.1 seed:  Venus       vs.     no.5 seed:  Jupiter     

no.3 seed:  Mercury       vs.     no.7 seed:  Pellucidar     

no.2 seed:  Mars       vs.      no.6 seed:  The Asteroids 

no.12 seed:  Vulcan       vs.     no.8 seed:  The Sun 

After the first day's play:

Venus  3    Jupiter  0
Mercury  6    Pellucidar  3
Mars  2    Asteroids  2
Vulcan  4    Sun  4

After the second day's play:

Venus  7    Jupiter  3
Mercury  7    Pellucidar  6
Mars  3    Asteroids  3
Vulcan  7    Sun  5

After the third day's play:

Venus  11    Jupiter  3
Mercury  14    Pellucidar  7
Mars  4    Asteroids  5
Vulcan  10    Sun  8

After the fourth day's play:

Venus  19    Jupiter  11
Mercury  20    Pellucidar  11
Mars  24    Asteroids  14
Vulcan  14    Sun  17

Two dramatic overtakings - the Martian surge really one for the books.

After the fifth day's play:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, MAY 2018

no.1 seed:  Venus  22     vs.     no.5 seed:  Jupiter  18  

no.3 seed:  Mercury  24     vs.     no.7 seed:  Pellucidar  15   

no.2 seed:  Mars  34     vs.      no.6 seed:  The Asteroids  20

no.12 seed:  Vulcan  16    vs.     no.8 seed:  The Sun  23

semi-finals, 16-20 may 2018:

no.1 seed:  Venus       vs.     no.3 seed:  Mercury      

no.2 seed:  Mars         vs.      no.8 seed:  The Sun

After the first day's play:

Venus  2    Mercury  4
Mars  3    The Sun  1

After the second day's play:

Venus  3    Mercury  7
Mars  5    The Sun  4

After the third day's play:

Venus  5    Mercury  13
Mars  10    The Sun  6

After the fourth day's play:

Venus  5    Mercury  17
Mars  10    The Sun  6

After the fifth day's play:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, MAY 2018

no.1 seed:  Venus  6   vs.     no.3 seed:  Mercury  20

no.2 seed:  Mars 11    vs.      no.8 seed:  The Sun  21

The shock to end all shocks - the Solarian surge!  The odds against Arbol beating Malacandra were in the 1000's-to-1.  But it has happened.  It just goes to show, the timing of surges is crucial, and that anything can happen in a knock-out competition.

The reigning champions, the Mercurians, are also doing remarkably well this year, having reached their third final in 5 months, and being in reach of their third championship in that period; moreover, on their way up they've just beaten six-times-champions Venus.

The final is going to be furnace-hot.  The only possible hotter one would have been a Sun-Vulcan final...

the final, 21-25 may 2018:

no.3 seed:  Mercury      vs.      no.8 seed:  The Sun  

After the first day's play:
Mercury  4    The Sun  3

After the second day's play:
Mercury  6    The Sun  6

After the third day's play:
Mercury  8    The Sun  8

After the fourth day's play:
Mercury  12    The Sun  11

After the fifth and last day's play:

no.3 seed:  Mercury  17    vs.      no.8 seed:  The Sun  14 

So the winner of the 21st Interplanetary Knock-Out championship, May 2018, is

Mercury

Had the Sun won, there would have been an explosion of interest in the addition to the Hall of Fame.  Since victory went to the Mercurians, the focus now is on them, and this result is likewise interesting: a fourth championship for the little world that now equals mighty Mars in the number of trophies (4), must say something significant about.. er... something.  Like, perhaps, small worlds compensate by being crowded with closeness to the Infinite, which presses down upon their close horizons in the sense conveyed in Valeddom

Meanwhile, all eyes rest on the podium where James Baron - taking time off before his optimistic attempt to make a Brightside Crossing - lifts the trophy on behalf of all Mercury's explorers.

The System distribution of trophies is now: 6 for Venus, 4 each for Mercury and Mars, 2 each for the Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn, and 1 for Vulcan.


april 2018

first round, 1-5 april 2018

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  13     vs.     no.17 seed:  Pluto  8

no.9 seed:  Earth  16     vs.      no.25 seed:  Io  5

no.5 seed:  Iapetus   20     vs.     no.21 seed:  Europa  10 

no.13 seed:  Amalthea  14    vs.     no. 29 seed:  Styx  6 

no.3 seed:  Mars  14     vs.     no.19 seed:  The Reefs of Space  12

no.11 seed:  Pellucidar  19     vs      no.27 seed:  Titania  4 

no.7 seed:  Mercury  18     vs.     no.23 seed:  Ganymede  7 

no.15 seed:  Triton  8      vs.     no.31 seed:  Leda  5 

no.2 seed:  Venus  19      vs.      no.18 seed:  Neptune  8 

no.10 seed:  The Sun  17    vs       no.26 seed:  Oberon  5 

no.6 seed:  Saturn  13     vs.      no.22 seed:  Callisto11 

no.14 seed:  Uranus  13     vs.     no.30 seed:  Umbriel  4 

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  13    vs.      no.20 seed:  Comets  9

no.12 seed:  Vulcan  14       vs.     no.28 seed:  Cerberus  4 

no.8 seed:  The Moon  12      vs.     no.24 seed:  Ceres  5 

no.16 seed:  Titan 14      vs.     no.32 seed:  Ariel  5 

second round, 6-10 april 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  24     vs.     no.9 seed:  Earth  15

no.5 seed:  Iapetus  18     vs.     no.13 seed:  Amalthea  10

no.3 seed:  Mars  18     vs.     no.11 seed:  Pellucidar  15  

no.7 seed:  Mercury  15     vs.     no.15 seed:  Triton  12

no.2 seed:  Venus  15      vs.      no.10 seed:  The Sun  16

no.6 seed:  Saturn  20      vs.      no.14 seed:  Uranus  16

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  17    vs.      no.12 seed:  Vulcan  13

no.8 seed:  The Moon  15     vs.     no.16 seed:  Titan  9   

One fantastic upset - the champions Venus knocked out by the Solarians in a close-fought match. 

quarter-finals, 11-15 april 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter       vs.     no.5 seed:  Iapetus  

no.3 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury      

no.10 seed:  The Sun        vs.     no.6 seed:  Saturn 

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids         vs.      no.8 seed:  The Moon 

After the first day's play:

Jupiter  3    Iapetus  7
Mars  3    Mercury  3
The Sun  3    Saturn  5
The Asteroids  5    The Moon  2

After the second day's play:

Jupiter  14    Iapetus  14
Mars  8    Mercury  8
The Sun  8    Saturn  10
The Asteroids  7    The Moon  6

After the third day's play:

Jupiter  17    Iapetus  14
Mars  14    Mercury  16
The Sun  15    Saturn  13
The Asteroids  15    The Moon  11

After the fourth day's play:

Jupiter  20    Iapetus  15
Mars  18    Mercury  17
The Sun  16    Saturn  16
The Asteroids  16    The Moon  14

After the fifth day's play:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, APRIL 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  20     vs.     no.5 seed:  Iapetus  16

no.3 seed:  Mars  20      vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury  25    

no.10 seed:  The Sun  16      vs.     no.6 seed:  Saturn  17

no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  17       vs.      no.8 seed:  The Moon  15

This has been a superb semi-final, with its catch-ups and overtakes and close runs and a dramatic late surge by Mercury to beat the Martians.  And now, amazingly, we have a semi-final round in which all four contenders have won the trophy exactly twice before.

semi-finals, 16-20 april 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter      vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury     

no.6 seed:  Saturn       vs.      no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids 

After the first day's play:

Jupiter  7    Mercury  5
Saturn  5    The Asteroids  3

After the second day's play:

Jupiter  7    Mercury  8
Saturn  6    The Asteroids  7

After the third day's play:

Jupiter  9    Mercury  12
Saturn  12    The Asteroids  8

After the fourth day's play:

Jupiter  9    Mercury  15
Saturn  12    The Asteroids  10

After the fifth day's play:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, APRIL 2018

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  11   vs.     no.7 seed:  Mercury  16   

no.6 seed:  Saturn 14     vs.      no. 4 seed:  The Asteroids  12

the final, 21-25 april 2018:

no.7 seed:  Mercury       vs.      no.6 seed:  Saturn

After the first day's play:
Mercury  3    Saturn  1

After the second day's play:
Mercury  5    Saturn 

After the third day's play:
Mercury  9    Saturn  5

 
After the fourth day's play:
Mercury  10    Saturn  7

After the fifth and final day's play:

no.7 seed:  Mercury  16     vs.      no.6 seed:  Saturn  13

So the winner of the April 2018 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Mercury

Lonely crystal entities from Darkside, salamandrine lizards from Hotside and telemorphic humans from the Twilight Belt tinkle, creep and jostle to the front of the crowd at Ceres Stadium to watch Toach Mnuvax of Vutu hold aloft Mercury's third IKO trophy.

After twenty tournaments the score of championships is now:

6 trophies for Venus, 4 for Mars, 3 for Mercury, 2 each for the Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn, and 1 for Vulcan.


march 2018

first round, 1-5 march 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  26     vs.     no.17 seed:  The Reefs of Space  8 

no.9 seed:  The Sun  13     vs.      no.25 seed:  Ganymede  8 

no.5 seed:  Mars  19     vs.     no.21 seed:  Ceres  9 

no.13 seed:  Titan  8     vs.     no. 29 seed:  Styx  6 

no.3 seed:  Saturn  16     vs.     no.19 seed:  Amalthea  14 

no.11 seed:  Earth  15     vs      no.27 seed:  Oberon  5 

no.7 seed:  The Asteroids   20     vs.     no.23 seed:  Callisto  7 

no.15 seed:  Triton  15      vs.     no.31 seed:  Cerberus  5 

no.2 seed:  Iapetus  24      vs.      no.18 seed:  Comets  13 

no.10 seed:  The Moon  18     vs       no.26 seed:  Umbriel  6 

no.6 seed:  Venus  22      vs.      no.22 seed:  Europa  7 

no.14 seed:  Pluto  13     vs.     no.30 seed:  Ariel  6 

no. 4 seed:  Mercury  21    vs.      no.20 seed:  Pallas  8

no.12 seed:  Uranus  8     vs.     no.28 seed:  Titania  8 

no.8 seed:  Vulcan  13    vs.     no.24 seed:  Io  8 

no.16 seed:  Neptune  10     vs.     no.32 seed:  Leda  6 

The Uranians were unexpectedly held to a draw by the team from their planet's own moon Titania, so a replay will be necessary.

It's worth a note that the two highest scorers in this first round were the previous month's finalists, Jupiter and Iapetus.  It just goes to show, continuity can make itself felt, despite the chancy nature of a knock-out tournament.

REPLAY OF FIRST-ROUND MATCH, 6 MARCH 2018:

no.12 seed:  Uranus  8     vs.     no.28 seed:  Titania  2

second round, 6-10 march 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  32     vs.     no.9 seed:  The Sun  25     

no.5 seed:  Mars  22     vs.     no.13 seed:  Titan  14

no.3 seed:  Saturn  26     vs.     no.11 seed:  Earth  20 

no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  29     vs.     no.15 seed:  Triton  14 

no.2 seed:  Iapetus  24     vs.      no.10 seed:  The Moon  22

no.6 seed:  Venus  27      vs.      no.14 seed:  Pluto  17 

no. 4 seed:  Mercury  26    vs.      no.12 seed:  Uranus  22 

no.8 seed:  Vulcan  19    vs.     no.16 seed:  Neptune  15

quarter-finals, 11-15 march 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter       vs.     no.5 seed:  Mars  

no.3 seed:  Saturn       vs.     no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  

no.2 seed:  Iapetus        vs.      no.6 seed:  Venus  

no. 4 seed:  Mercury      vs.      no.8 seed:  Vulcan

After the first day's play:

Jupiter  4    Mars  6
Saturn  4    The Asteroids  2
Iapetus  5    Venus  3
Mercury  1    Vulcan  3

After the second day's play:

Jupiter  7    Mars  10
Saturn  7    The Asteroids  5
Iapetus  7    Venus  3
Mercury  3    Vulcan  5

After the third day's play:

Jupiter  7    Mars  15
Saturn  8    The Asteroids  5
Iapetus  9    Venus  3
Mercury  7    Vulcan  5

After the fourth day's play:

Jupiter  12    Mars  22
Saturn  16    The Asteroids  8
Iapetus  9    Venus  9
Mercury  14    Vulcan  6

After the fifth day's play:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, 15 MARCH 2018:

no.1 seed:  Jupiter  17      vs.     no.5 seed:  Mars  27

no.3 seed:  Saturn  20     vs.     no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  13

no.2 seed:  Iapetus  13      vs.      no.6 seed:  Venus  16 

no. 4 seed:  Mercury  19      vs.      no.8 seed:  Vulcan 11

An eye-brow-lifting round.  Most people had put their money on the Jovians, who were the big scorers in the first two rounds, but now a Martian resurgence has knocked out the champions, to give the Red Planet team their first semi-final place since four tournaments ago.  Meanwhile the Venusians, historically the mightiest team with five championships to their credit, came up from behind to beat last month's second-placed Iapetans.

semi-finals, 16-20 march 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mars       vs.      no.3 seed:  Saturn 

no.6 seed:  Venus       vs.      no. 4 seed:  Mercury 

After the first day's play:

Mars  1    Saturn  2
Venus  4    Mercury  2

After the second day's play:

Mars  7    Saturn  5
Venus  9    Mercury  5

After the third day's play:

Mars  13    Saturn  10
Venus  13    Mercury  7

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  17    Saturn  14
Venus  19    Mercury  11

After the fifth day's play:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, 20 MARCH 2018

no.5 seed:  Mars  21     vs.      no.3 seed:  Saturn  17

no.6 seed:  Venus  23     vs.      no. 4 seed:  Mercury  18

the final, 21-25 march 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mars       vs.      no.6 seed:  Venus 

So we have a final with the two big hitters, Mars and Venus, like we did last October (which Mars won) and last July (which Venus won).  This time, both planets seem equally on form; a case of the irresistible force versus the immovable object - whichever is which.

After the first day's play:
Mars  4    Venus  4

After the second day's play:
Mars  5    Venus  8

After the third day's play:
Mars  7    Venus  14

After the fourth day's play:
Mars  9    Venus  19

After the fifth and last day's play:

THE FINAL RESULT, 25 MARCH 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mars  12     vs.      no.6 seed:  Venus  23

So the winner of the March 2018 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Venus

Having won for the sixth time, the Venusians have truly established their dominance of the tournament - six tropies out of nineteen; almost a third of the total.

The beautiful princess Duare once more takes the trophy and holds it aloft to frantic cheers from a crowd of supporters from the Planet of Love.  Even the fish-men of Myposa flap their gills in appreciation.

The championship-count now stands as follows:  6 for Venus, 4 for Mars, 2 each for Mercury, the Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn, and 1 for Vulcan.

We are left with a puzzle: why have the results been weighted in this way?  How come Venus has done markedly better than its great rival Mars?  After a night of heated debate in the taverns of the System, among pundits hunched over their tankards of segir, no theory has yet become widely accepted - except on Venus, of course.



february 2018

first round, 1-5 february 2018:

no.1 seed:  Io  5     vs.     no.17 seed:  Pellucidar  9 

no.9 seed:  Mars  19      vs.      no.25 seed:  Ganymede  7 

no.5 seed:  Iapetus  18      vs.     no.21 seed:  Pallas  11 

no.13 seed:  The Moon  14     vs.     no. 29 seed:  Titania  4 

no.3 seed:  Mercury  16      vs.     no.19 seed:  Triton  8   

no.11 seed:  Uranus  19     vs      no.27 seed:  Ariel  2 

no.7 seed:  Titan  11     vs.     no.23 seed:  Europa  9 

no.15 seed:  Vulcan  13      vs.     no.31 seed:  Leda  2 

no.2 seed:  Neptune  13     vs.      no.18 seed:  The Reefs of Space  9

no.10 seed:  Earth  13     vs       no.26 seed:  Callisto  5 

no.6 seed:  Venus  12      vs.      no.22 seed:  Comets  10

no.14 seed:  The Sun  15     vs.     no.30 seed:  Umbriel  9 

no. 4 seed:  Jupiter  24    vs.      no.20 seed:  Pluto  18  

no.12 seed:  The Asteroids  15     vs.     no.28 seed:  Ceres  6 

no.8 seed:  Saturn  15    vs.     no.24 seed:  Oberon  4 

no.16 seed:  Amalthea  7     vs.     no.32 seed:  Cerberus  1 

second round, 6-10 february 2018:

no.17 seed:  Pellucidar  9       vs.      no.9 seed:  Mars  14

no.5 seed:  Iapetus  24           vs.     no.13 seed:  The Moon  17 

no.3 seed:  Mercury  22      vs.     no.11 seed:  Uranus  7

no.7 seed:  Titan  13     vs.     no.15 seed:  Vulcan  22

no.2 seed:  Neptune  7     vs.      no.10 seed:  Earth  12 

no.6 seed:  Venus  17      vs.      no.14 seed:  The Sun  16

no. 4 seed:  Jupiter  28    vs.      no.12 seed:  The Asteroids  11    

no.8 seed:  Saturn  25    vs.     no.16 seed:  Amalthea  10     

quarter-finals, 11-15 february 2018:

no.9 seed:  Mars        vs.       no.5 seed:  Iapetus            

no.3 seed:  Mercury        vs.       no.15 seed:  Vulcan  

no.10 seed:  Earth      vs.       no.6 seed:  Venus 

no. 4 seed:  Jupiter     vs.       no.8 seed:  Saturn       

After the first day's play:

Mars  2    Iapetus  6
Mercury  2    Vulcan  4
Earth  1    Venus  2
Jupiter  3    Saturn  2

After the second day's play:

Mars  7    Iapetus  7
Mercury  7    Vulcan  9
Earth  6    Venus  8
Jupiter  5    Saturn  2

After the third day's play:

Mars  9   Iapetus  7
Mercury  8    Vulcan  13
Earth  8    Venus  10
Jupiter  9    Saturn  3

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  15   Iapetus  11
Mercury  11    Vulcan  17
Earth  11    Venus  14
Jupiter  23    Saturn  8

After the fifth day's play the February 2018 quarter-final results are:

no.9 seed:  Mars  18      vs.       no.5 seed:  Iapetus  21          

no.3 seed:  Mercury  17      vs.       no.15 seed:  Vulcan  19

no.10 seed:  Earth  14      vs.       no.6 seed:  Venus  17

no. 4 seed:  Jupiter  27    vs.       no.8 seed:  Saturn  15      

semi-finals, 16-20 february 2018:

no.5 seed:  Iapetus        vs.       no.15 seed:  Vulcan  

no.6 seed:  Venus      vs.       no. 4 seed:  Jupiter        

After the first day's play: 

Iapetus  0    Vulcan  1
Venus  1    Jupiter  3

After the second day's play: 

Iapetus  1    Vulcan  2
Venus  2    Jupiter  5

After the third day's play: 

Iapetus  6    Vulcan  5
Venus  5    Jupiter  13

After the fourth day's play: 

Iapetus  9    Vulcan  7
Venus  9    Jupiter  16

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, 21 FEB 2018:

no.5 seed:  Iapetus  13      vs.       no.15 seed:  Vulcan  10 

no.6 seed:  Venus  12     vs.       no. 4 seed:  Jupiter  19      

So we're in for a Iapetus-Jupiter final.  And this is the first entirely Outer-Solar-System final ever!  (The nearest earlier approach to one was in last September, when we had an Asteroids-Saturn final, but the Asteroids aren't exactly "Outer", they're more "in between".)

the final, 21-25 february 2018:

no.5 seed:  Iapetus        vs.       no. 4 seed:  Jupiter 

After the first day's play:

Iapetus  8    Jupiter  11

After the second day's play:

Iapetus  11    Jupiter  14

After the third day's play:

Iapetus  17    Jupiter  19

After the fourth day's play:

Iapetus  20    Jupiter  22

After the fifth and last day's play:

no.5 seed:  Iapetus  22      vs.       no. 4 seed:  Jupiter  24 

So the winner of the February 2018 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Jupiter

So at last, in the 18th competition, the Giant Planet regains the trophy which it won in the very first Interplanetary Knock-Out, way back in September 2016.  And about time, grumble the Skeleton Men.  Vorion holds aloft the Orrery while a crowd of Morgors snap their jaws in triumph.  Other species of Jovian jostle in front of the cameras, demanding recognition - including stocky flipper-men and tank-shaped creatures... while newsmen take the opportunity to ask pointed questions about the whereabouts of John Carter.

Meanwhile the Iapetans, by common agreement, deserve a big round of applause as the runners-up.  A mere moon got within 3 points of the championship.  It's only a matter of time, pundits agree, before it happens.  Iapetus, or Titan, or Earth's Moon will surely get it eventually.  The pundits have been expressing such opinions for quite a while. 

Regarding the number of trophies won, the score now stands as follows:

5 for Venus; 4 for Mars; 2 each for Mercury, The Asteroids, Jupiter and Saturn; 1 for Vulcan.



january 2018

first round, 1-5 january 2018; results out 6 jan:

no.1 seed:  Io  82     vs.     no.17 seed:  Neptune  28 

no.9 seed:  Saturn  12    vs.     no.25 seed:  Europa  6 

no.5 seed:  Mercury  7    vs.     no.21 seed:  Comets  4 

no.13 seed:  Vulcan  7    vs.     no. 29 seed:  Ariel  4 

no.3 seed:  The Asteroids  6  vs.     no.19 seed:  Amalthea  12 

no.11 seed:  Jupiter  14    vs      no.27 seed:  Pallas  5 

no.7 seed:  The Moon  6    vs.     no.23 seed:  Oberon  6 

no.15 seed:  Uranus  8    vs.     no.31 seed:  Styx  2 

no.2 seed:  Venus  10    vs.      no.18 seed:  Triton  6 

no.10 seed:  Pellucidar    vs       no.26 seed:  Umbriel  3

no.6 seed:  Earth  7   vs.      no.22 seed:  Ganymede  2

no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  4    vs.     no.30 seed:  Titania  4 

no. 4 seed:  Mars  11    vs.      no.20 seed:  Pluto  5 

no.12 seed:  Titan  21    vs.     no.28 seed:  Ceres  3

no.8 seed:  The Sun  10    vs.     no.24 seed:  Callisto  3 

no.16 seed:  Iapetus  9     vs.     no.32 seed:  Cerberus  3 

That the team from Io, until now one of the duds of the competition (the Ionians had only ever won 2 games before this) should now smash the record for highest score, which used to be 52 and is now 82...  well, it has set the System's sports commentariat into spasms of hyperbolic superlatives.  It just goes to show: anything can happen.  Anything.

For instance, former champions the Asteroids being beaten by Amalthea...

On another note: we'll have to have replays of the drawn clashes, namely The Moon vs Oberon and The Reefs of Space vs Titania.

6 JANUARY 2018 REPLAYS OF DRAWN FIRST-ROUND MATCHES:

no.7 seed:  The Moon  1    vs.     no.23 seed:  Oberon  1

no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  1   vs.     no.30 seed:  Titania  1

These teams seem determined to draw with each other!  Another try must therefore be scheduled for the next day.

7 JANUARY 2018 REPLAYS OF DRAWN FIRST-ROUND MATCHES:

no.7 seed:  The Moon  3    vs.     no.23 seed:  Oberon  1

no.14 seed: The Reefs of Space  3   vs.     no.30 seed:  Titania  1

Again, somewhat improbably symmetrical scores, but this time giving a decision - to general relief.

second round, 6-10 january 2018:

no.1 seed:  Io  31     vs.     no.9 seed:  Saturn  14 

no.5 seed:  Mercury  16     vs.     no.13 seed:  Vulcan  7   

no.19 seed:  Amalthea   5      vs.      no.11 seed:  Jupiter  14 

no.7 seed:  The Moon  7      vs.     no.15 seed:  Uranus  7 

no.2 seed:  Venus  13    vs.      no.10 seed:  Pellucidar  4 

no.6 seed:  Earth   9     vs.      no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  9

no. 4 seed:  Mars  8      vs.      no.12 seed:  Titan  14 

no.8 seed:  The Sun  7  vs.     no.16 seed: Iapetus  18 

So, replays are needed for Moon vs Uranus, and Earth vs the Reefs.  Quirky coincidence that the Moon and the Reefs once again drew with their opponents, as they did in the previous round.

The victory of the Titanics over the Martians has injected some extra excitement into the tournament, as has the unprecedented advance of the Ionians into the quarter-finals, where they will confront the Mercurians.  Both are examples of smaller bodies defeating larger (especially so in the case of Io beating Saturn).  Could it be that the future lies with the smaller bodies, as the public gets jaded with the major planets?  On the other hand, the public is always changing too, new page-hitters arriving on the scene continually, and these aren't going to be jaded for a long time yet...

 11 JANUARY 2018 REPLAYS OF DRAWN SECOND-ROUND MATCHES:

no.7 seed:  The Moon  2      vs.     no.15 seed:  Uranus  1

no.6 seed:  Earth  2     vs.      no.14 seed:  The Reefs of Space  1

...again that symmetry - this time two 2-1's.

quarter-finals, 11-15 january 2018:

no.1 seed:  Io       vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury     

no.11 seed:  Jupiter        vs.      no.7 seed:  The Moon 

no.2 seed:  Venus       vs.      no.6 seed:  Earth  

no.12 seed:  Titan        vs.     no.16 seed:  Iapetus  

After the first day's play:

Io  0    Mercury  3
Jupiter  3    The Moon  2
Venus  2    Earth  2
Titan  4    Iapetus  5

The Ionian Surge appears to have fizzled...  while the Saturnian system is now the highest-scoring scene (but without Saturn itself).  The politicos are scratching their heads...

After the second day's play:

Io  0    Mercury  10
Jupiter  4    The Moon  4
Venus  7    Earth  4
Titan  6    Iapetus  6

After the third day's play:

Io  2    Mercury  19
Jupiter  13    The Moon  7
Venus  10    Earth  5
Titan  12    Iapetus  9

After the fourth day's play:

Io  2    Mercury  22
Jupiter  15    The Moon  7
Venus  11    Earth  6
Titan  15    Iapetus  18

AFTER FIVE DAYS' PLAY:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, JAN 2018:

no.1 seed:  Io  3    vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury  23    

no.11 seed:  Jupiter  17      vs.      no.7 seed:  The Moon  8  

no.2 seed:  Venus  12      vs.      no.6 seed:  Earth  6

no.12 seed:  Titan  16      vs.     no.16 seed:  Iapetus  20 

SEMI-FINALS, 16-20 JANUARY 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mercury      vs.      no.11 seed:  Jupiter   

no.2 seed:  Venus        vs.     no.16 seed:  Iapetus 

After the first day's play:

Mercury  0    Jupiter  1
Venus  1    Iapetus  0

After the second day's play:

Mercury  6    Jupiter  7
Venus  3    Iapetus  1

After the third day's play:

Mercury  16    Jupiter  12
Venus  8    Iapetus  8

AFTER FIVE DAYS' PLAY:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, JAN 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mercury  25    vs.      no.11 seed:  Jupiter  19 

no.2 seed:  Venus  16      vs.     no.16 seed:  Iapetus  15

Harlei:  Oh no not another Mercury-Venus final...  Stid:  What does it matter?  Zendexor:  Be positive, both of you! - it must mean something worth knowing.  We're in a period of Inner Solar System predominance, looks like...  Harlei:  But let's hope we don't get a Venusian walk-over like the previous final.  Zendexor:  No reason why it should be, with the Mercurians the highest scorers in both the quarter- and semi-finals.  This could be "Mercury's hour".

the final, 21-25 january 2018:

no.5 seed:  Mercury      vs.      no.2 seed:  Venus  

After the first day's play:
Mercury  4    Venus  3

After the second day's play:
Mercury  7    Venus  5

After the third day's play:
Mercury  11    Venus  6

After the fourth day's play:

Mercury  16    Venus  11

After the fifth and last day's play:

no.5 seed:  Mercury  19  vs.      no.2 seed:  Venus  15

So the winner of the January 2018 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Mercury

Since their last championship win, fourteen competitions ago, the Mercurians have suffered disappointment after disappointment, but now at last they have reclaimed the trophy.  The Inner Planet's Twilight Belt glows with runnels of molten lead imported from Hotside to trace out the curlicues in the Noleddern script that proclaim, "We did it!"  Toach Mnuvax of Vutu - captain of the team - receives the OSS Orrery at the hands of Archon Zendexor at Ceres stadium, and holds it aloft while crystalline beings from Coldside (who are most comfortable in Cerian conditions) wave their appendages from the stadium's periphery...

The trophy-win totals, world by world, are now as follows:

5 for Venus; 4 for Mars; 2 each for Mercury, the Asteroids and Saturn; 1 each for Vulcan and Jupiter.



december 2017

first round, 1-5 december 2017:

no.1 seed:  Venus  16    vs.     no.17 seed:  Triton  4

no.9 seed:  Jupiter  10    vs.     no.25 seed:  Ceres  2

no.5 seed: Titan  10    vs.     no.21 seed:  Comets  6

no.13 seed:  Uranus  11   vs.     no. 29 seed:  Styx  2

no.3 seed:  The Asteroids  16   vs.     no.19 seed:  Neptune  9

no.11 seed:  The Moon  12    vs      no.27 seed:  Pallas  2

no.7 seed:  Earth  12     vs.     no.23 seed:  Europa  2

no.15 seed:  Amalthea  7     vs.     no.31 seed:  Io  0

no.2 seed:  Mars  13    vs.      no.18 seed:  Pluto  3

no.10 seed:  Saturn  11    vs       no.26 seed:  Titania  2

no.6 seed:  Mercury  13    vs.      no.22 seed:  Ganymede  4

no.14 seed:  The Sun  14     vs.     no.30 seed:  Ariel  2

no.4 seed:  Pellucidar  12     vs.     no.20 seed:  Oberon  3

no.12 seed:  Iapetus    vs.     no.28 seed:  Umbriel  5

no.8 seed:  Vulcan  13    vs.     no.24 seed:  Callisto  3 

no.16 seed:  The Reefs of Space  11     vs.     no.32 seed:  Cerberus  0


second round, 6-10 december 2017:

no.1 seed:  Venus  21    vs.     no.9 seed:  Jupiter  11  

no.5 seed: Titan  12    vs.     no.13 seed:  Uranus  8 

no.3 seed:  The Asteroids  20    vs.     no.11 seed:  The Moon  13 

no.7 seed:  Earth  10     vs.     no.15 seed:  Amalthea  6 

no.2 seed:  Mars  14  vs.      no.10 seed:  Saturn  15

no.6 seed:  Mercury  14    vs.      no.14 seed:  The Sun  10 

no.4 seed:  Pellucidar  11    vs.     no.12 seed:  Iapetus  10

no.8 seed:  Vulcan  12    vs.     no.16 seed:  The Reefs of Space  10

Some close results here, and an unexpected knockout of the mighty Martians by the redoubtable Saturnians.


quarter-finals, 11-15 december:

no.1 seed:  Venus      vs.     no.5 seed: Titan   

no.3 seed:  The Asteroids      vs.     no.7 seed:  Earth 

no.10 seed:  Saturn      vs.     no.6 seed:  Mercury 

no.4 seed:  Pellucidar       vs.     no.8 seed:  Vulcan 

After the first day's play:

Venus  1    Titan  1
The Asteroids  1    Earth  1
Saturn  1    Mercury  4
Pellucidar  2    Vulcan  0

After the second day's play:

Venus  7    Titan  2
The Asteroids  9    Earth  6
Saturn  7    Mercury  10
Pellucidar  8    Vulcan  4

After the third day's play:

Venus  18    Titan  5
The Asteroids  17    Earth  13
Saturn  10    Mercury  20
Pellucidar  15    Vulcan  13

After the fourth day's play:

Venus  20    Titan  7
The Asteroids  19    Earth  16
Saturn  11    Mercury  24
Pellucidar  18    Vulcan  17

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, DEC 2017, AFTER FIVE DAYS' PLAY:

no.1 seed:  Venus  25      vs.     no.5 seed: Titan  10 

no.3 seed:  The Asteroids  23     vs.     no.7 seed:  Earth  20 

no.10 seed:  Saturn  16     vs.     no.6 seed:  Mercury  25 

no.4 seed:  Pellucidar  21     vs.     no.8 seed:  Vulcan  21

The dogged Vulcanians having finally caught up to finish the five days neck and neck with the Pellucidarians,  extra time will have to be taken to determine the semi-final line-up.

If the Vulcanians win the play-off, we'll then get, like in October, an all-champions semi-final, i.e. all four teams being previous winners of the trophy.

Meanwhile we're certain to have a Venus-Asteroids semi-final, which looks to be an exceptionally high-scoring, close-fought contest, both teams being currently at the top of their form.

QUARTER-FINAL REPLAY, 16 DEC 2017:

no.4 seed:  Pellucidar  4     vs.     no.8 seed:  Vulcan  1



SEMI-FINALS, 16-20 DECEMBER 2017:

no.1 seed:  Venus        vs.       no.3 seed:  The Asteroids     

no.6 seed:  Mercury      vs.      no.4 seed:  Pellucidar 

After the first day's play:

Venus  5    The Asteroids  2
Mercury  5    Pellucidar  4

After the second day's play:

Venus  12    The Asteroids  5
Mercury  9    Pellucidar  7

After the third day's play:

Venus  17    The Asteroids  9
Mercury  13    Pellucidar  11

After the fourth day's play:

Venus  17    The Asteroids  11
Mercury  13    Pellucidar  11

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, DECEMBER 2017:

no.1 seed:  Venus  24      vs.       no.3 seed:  The Asteroids  15   

no.6 seed:  Mercury  15    vs.      no.4 seed:  Pellucidar  14 

So the Mercurians won their match with the same score that the Asteroids lost theirs; a slight irony of the sort common to knock-outs.

Now it turns out that we are in for a December Mercury-Venus final, which, by a startling coincidence, is the same line-up as we had in December last year.

On that occasion, December 2016, the Mercurians were the reigning champions and the favourites, yet they went on to lose to the Venusians, who at that date had not yet won a trophy.  This time, December 2017, the Venusians are the favourites...


the final, 21-25 december 2017:

no.1 seed:  Venus        vs.       no.6 seed:  Mercury 

After the first day's play:
Venus  3    Mercury  1

After the second day's play:
Venus  4    Mercury  2

After the third day's play:
Venus  6    Mercury  2

After the fourth day's play:
Venus  7    Mercury  2

After the fifth and last day's  play:

no.1 seed:  Venus  12     vs.       no.6 seed:  Mercury  8

So the winner of the December 2017 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Venus

A rather low-scoring final, due doubtless to the strain of the previous rounds during the run-up to Christmas.  The exhausted Venusian team staggered onto the dais to receive the trophy - the fifth they have won - and then their captain, Pricess Duare, held it aloft to ragged cheers from the equally exhausted fans. 

The Mercurians meanwhile, though missing the prize, felt a bit better from having rallied somewhat during the fifth and last day of play.

The score of trophies, after this 16th competition, is as follows: Venus 5, Mars 4, the Asteroids and Saturn 2 each, Vulcan, Mercury and Jupiter 1 each.



November 2017

first round, 1-5 november 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  17     vs.     no.17 seed:  Neptune  2

no.9 seed:  Vulcan  12    vs.     no.25 seed:  Umbriel  2 

no.5 seed: Mercury  9    vs.     no.21 seed:  Titania  3 

no.13 seed:  Iapetus  6   vs.     no. 29 seed:  Io  2 

no.3 seed:  Venus  16     vs.     no.19 seed:  Amalthea  5

no.11 seed:  Earth  11    vs      no.27 seed:  Europa  6

no.7 seed:  Jupiter  12    vs.     no.23 seed:  Pallas  1

no.15 seed:  The Reefs of Space  5     vs.     no.31 seed:  Ariel  2

no.2 seed:  The Sun  9     vs.      no.18 seed:  Comets  4

no.10 seed:  Titan  13     vs       no.26 seed:  Ceres  1 

no.6 seed:  The Moon  9     vs.      no.22 seed:  Callisto  3

no.14 seed:  Uranus  5     vs.     no.30 seed:  Styx  0

no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  8     vs.     no.20 seed:  Pluto  6

no.12 seed:  Pellucidar  7     vs.     no.28 seed:  Ganymede  4

no.8 seed:  Saturn  7    vs.     no.24 seed:  Oberon  6

no.16 seed:  Triton  3   vs.     no.32 seed:  Leda  1

No upsets (though Saturn only just managed to beat Oberon!), and once again all the top 16 seeds won.  But apart from the few at the top it was generally a low-scoring round; perhaps the OSS teams are in need of an interstellar holiday...

second round, 6-10 november 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  18     vs.     no.9 seed:  Vulcan  3      

no.5 seed:  Mercury  15     vs.     no.13 seed:  Iapetus  10    

no.3 seed:  Venus  20     vs.     no.11 seed:  Earth  7

no.7 seed:  Jupiter  13     vs.     no.15 seed:  The Reefs of Space  5

no.2 seed:  The Sun  10      vs.      no.10 seed:  Titan  12 

no.6 seed:  The Moon  5     vs.      no.14 seed:  Uranus  3  

no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  16      vs.     no.12 seed:  Pellucidar  9

no.8 seed:  Saturn  8    vs.     no.16 seed:  Triton  6

quarter-finals, 11-15 november 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury          

no.3 seed:  Venus       vs.     no.7 seed:  Jupiter      

no.10 seed:  Titan        vs.     no.6 seed:  The Moon    

no.4 seed:  The Asteroids        vs.     no.8 seed:  Saturn     

After the first day's play:

Mars  3    Mercury  1
Venus  3    Jupiter  2
Titan  2    The Moon  2
The Asteroids  2    Saturn  1

After the second day's play:

Mars  4    Mercury  3
Venus  5    Jupiter  3
Titan  3    The Moon  3
The Asteroids  4    Saturn  2

After the third day's play:

Mars  5    Mercury  3
Venus  9    Jupiter  4
Titan  7    The Moon  3
The Asteroids  7    Saturn  2

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  10    Mercury  8
Venus  14    Jupiter  7
Titan  9    The Moon  7
The Asteroids  15    Saturn  9

After the fifth and last day's play:

QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS, NOVEMBER 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  12     vs.     no.5 seed:  Mercury  11        

no.3 seed:  Venus  16     vs.     no.7 seed:  Jupiter  7    

no.10 seed:  Titan  9     vs.     no.6 seed:  The Moon  8 

no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  17      vs.     no.8 seed:  Saturn  10    

semi-finals, 16-20 november 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.3 seed:  Venus      

no.10 seed:  Titan       vs.     no.4 seed:  The Asteroids 

After the first day's play:

Mars  0    Venus  2
Titan  4    The Asteroids  1

After the second day's play:

Mars  7    Venus  6
Titan  7    The Asteroids  8

After the third day's play:

Mars  11    Venus  8
Titan  10    The Asteroids  12

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  11    Venus  8
Titan  13    The Asteroids  13

After the fifth and last day's play:

SEMI-FINAL RESULTS, NOVEMBER 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  19      vs.     no.3 seed:  Venus  13    

no.10 seed:  Titan  14      vs.     no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  17

So for the second time, we have a final between the Asteroids and Mars.  On the previous occasion, in February, the Martians won.  The Asteroids have been in two other finals since then: once in March, when they lost to the Saturnians, and again in September, when they beat the Saturnians to gain their first trophy.

THE FINAL, 21-25 NOVEMBER 2017; RESULT OUT 26 NOV:

no.1 seed:  Mars        vs.     no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  

After the first day's play:

Mars  5    The Asteroids  4

After the second day's play:

Mars  6    The Asteroids  7

After the third day's play:

Mars  6    The Asteroids  8

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  8    The Asteroids  9

After the fifth and last day's play:

no.1 seed:  Mars  8     vs.     no.4 seed:  The Asteroids  9

So the winner of the November 2017 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

The Asteroids

As it did two months ago, the Belt erupts in a frenzy of delirious coruscations.

The Asteroids now have their revenge for their defeats by Mars, in the February final and in last month's semi-final.

The Belters have now won twice, while the Martians have won four times.

And although this time the Asteroids won by only one point, the Martians likewise won two of their trophies - of April (against Jupiter) and June (against Titan) - by just one point on each occasion.

Now, who's coming to pick up the trophy?  A golden shimmer...  all the spectators shrink back in awe...  it is the Master of Asteroid Phocea...



october 2017

first round, 1-5 october 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  21     vs.     no.17 seed:  Neptune  6 

no.9 seed:  The Sun  14    vs.     no.25 seed:  Europa  4 

no.5 seed:  Jupiter  13    vs.     no.21 seed:  Triton  9 

no.13 seed:  Pluto  6    vs.     no. 29 seed:  Styx  4 

no.3 seed:  Vulcan  16     vs.     no.19 seed:  Comets  7

no.11 seed:  Iapetus  16    vs      no.27 seed:  Io  5

no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  12     vs.     no.23 seed:  Pallas  6

no.15 seed:  Amalthea  7    vs.     no.31 seed:  Leda  3

no.2 seed:  Venus  16     vs.      no.18 seed:  The Reefs of Space  9

no.10 seed:  Titan  13     vs       no.26 seed:  Ganymede  6

no.6 seed:  Saturn  15     vs.      no.22 seed:  Titania  8

no.14 seed:  Pellucidar  12     vs.     no.30 seed:  Umbriel  6

no.4 seed:  Mercury  9     vs.     no.20 seed:  Callisto  7

no.12 seed:  Earth  12     vs.     no.28 seed:  Ceres  4

no.8 seed:  The Moon  11    vs.     no.24 seed:  Oberon  9

no.16 seed:  Uranus  13    vs.     no.32 seed:  Ariel  5

One of those rounds in which the judgement of the Seeding Committee has been thoroughly borne out.

second round, 6-10 october 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  29     vs.     no.9 seed:  The Sun  16 

no.5 seed:  Jupiter  19    vs.     no.13 seed:  Pluto  8

no.3 seed:  Vulcan  16    vs.      no.11 seed:  Iapetus  13

no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  19     vs.      no.15 seed:  Amalthea  9

no.2 seed:  Venus  14     vs.      no.10 seed:  Titan  13

no.6 seed:  Saturn  18     vs.      no.14 seed:  Pellucidar  12

no.4 seed:  Mercury  18     vs.     no.12 seed:  Earth  14

no.8 seed:  The Moon  14    vs.      no.16 seed:  Uranus  14

Rank mostly prevailed: in each game the upper seed won, except for the draw between the Moon and Uranus, which makes a replay necessary.

REPLAY, 11TH OCTOBER 2017:

no.8 seed:  The Moon  5      vs.      no.16 seed:  Uranus  0

QUARTER-FINALS, 11-15 OCTOBER 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.5 seed:  Jupiter 

no.3 seed:  Vulcan      vs.      no.7 seed:  The Asteroids 

no.2 seed:  Venus       vs.      no.6 seed:  Saturn 

no.4 seed:  Mercury      vs.     no.8 seed:  The Moon 

It's a sign of how much history has been accumulated by the competition, which is now in its fourteenth month: that of these eight quarter-finalists, seven are previous winners of the trophy.  Only the Moon has yet to win it.

After the first day's play:

Mars  5    Jupiter  0
Vulcan  2    The Asteroids  1
Venus  3    Saturn  1
Mercury  1    The Moon  5

After the second day's play:

Mars  5    Jupiter  0
Vulcan  2    The Asteroids  1
Venus  5    Saturn  2
Mercury  1    The Moon  6

After the third day's play:

Mars  7    Jupiter  1
Vulcan  4    The Asteroids  6
Venus  8    Saturn  3
Mercury  3    The Moon  8

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  10    Jupiter  7
Vulcan  8    The Asteroids  8
Venus  11    Saturn  6
Mercury  9    The Moon  11

After the fifth day's play the October 2017 quarter-final results are as follows:

no.1 seed:  Mars  11     vs.     no.5 seed:  Jupiter  10

no.3 seed:  Vulcan  9     vs.      no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  12

no.2 seed:  Venus  13     vs.      no.6 seed:  Saturn  7

no.4 seed:  Mercury  13    vs.     no.8 seed:  The Moon  13

A Mercury-Moon replay is necessary, as the Mercurians, showing some of their old fire, came up from behind in quite dramatic fashion to draw with the Selenites.  The Jovians meanwhile almost did the same to their old rivals the Martians, in a late surge which, however, wasn't quite good enough for them to catch up with the Red Planet.  Bandolian the skeletal Morgor, clashing his dentures, vows his team will do better next time - or else.

QUARTER-FINAL REPLAY, 16TH OCTOBER 2017:

no.4 seed:  Mercury  4    vs.     no.8 seed:  The Moon  3

A dramatic comeback by the Inner Planet.

semi-finals, 16-20 october 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.7 seed:  The Asteroids 

no.2 seed:  Venus       vs.      no.4 seed:  Mercury 

After the first day's play: 

Mars  4    Asteroids  4
Venus  5    Mercury  4

After the second day's play: 

Mars  10    Asteroids  8
Venus  9    Mercury  6

After the third day's play: 

Mars  15    Asteroids  8
Venus  11    Mercury  10

After the fourth day's play: 

Mars  20    Asteroids  13
Venus  16    Mercury  12

After the fifth and last day's play of the semi-finals, October 2017: 

no.1 seed:  Mars  27     vs.     no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  18

no.2 seed:  Venus  22     vs.      no.4 seed:  Mercury  17

So for the second time in history we shall have a Mars-Venus final.  In July, the Venusians (seeded no.3) narrowly defeated the Martians (seeded no.2).  This time the Martians are no.1. seed and the Venusians no.2.  The Martians, favourites to win, are in top scoring form, yet the Venusians are not far behind, and the wisest pundits are hedging their bets.  If the Martians do win this one, they will equal Venus' record of four trophies.

the final, 21-25 october 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars       vs.     no.2 seed:  Venus 

After the first day's play:

Mars  1    Venus  1

After the second day's play:

Mars  6    Venus  2

After the third day's play:

Mars  11    Venus  6

After the fourth day's play:

Mars  14    Venus  8

After the last day's play:  

no.1 seed:  Mars  20     vs.     no.2 seed:  Venus  14  

So the winner of the October 2017 Interplanetary Knock-Out is

Mars

"From the organizers' point of view (and the bookies') this is the most perfect result ever: number 1 seed beats number 2 seed in the final.  Oddly, it has never happened before.  The closest to it was the December 2016 final, the only other one where number 1 faced number 2 - but on that occasion the number 2 (Venus) beat the number 1 (Mercury). 

Anyhow, the Martians have now caught up with the Venusians in number of trophies won.  After fourteen competitions the trophy-totals are:  Mars and Venus 4 each, Saturn 2, and Jupiter, Mercury, Vulcan and the Asteroids 1 each.  As to aggregate scores - "

"Thank you, Statistician Glubglop; I must interrupt you as we get back to the stadium on Ceres where the Archon Zendexor is about to hand over the System trophy to...  who's this?  Ah, a red-tinted figure in harness...  the Unknown Panthan approaches the Archon's box, takes the Orrery and holds it aloft to wild cheers and Kaors from the red, black, white, yellow and green Barsoomians, plus willowy sorns, insectoid pfiffltriggi, furry hrossa, birdlike Tweel...  Never heard such cacophonous pandemonium...  while simultaneously the silent Gallun Martians are flashing their torches and winking their mirrors..."



september 2017

first round, 1-5 september 2017:

no.1 seed:  Mars  16     vs.   no.17 seed:  The Reefs of Space  5 

no.9 seed:  Mercury  11    vs.   no.25 seed:  Oberon  6 

no.5 seed:  Jupiter  10    vs.   no.21 seed:  Comets  11 

no.13 seed:  Pellucidar  7    vs.   no. 29 seed:  Ariel  3 

no.3 seed:  Vulcan  12    vs.   no.19 seed:  Titania  9

no.11 seed:  Titan  14    vs.   no.27 seed:  Leda  4

no.7 seed:  The Asteroids  10    vs.   no.23 seed:  Europa  2

no.15 seed:  Neptune  4     vs.   no.31 seed:  Umbriel  3

no.2 seed:  Venus  11    vs.   no.18 seed:  Pluto  10

no.10 seed:  Iapetus  11   vs.   no.26 seed:  Io  2

no.6 seed:  Saturn  10    vs.   no.22 seed:  Pallas  6 

no.14 seed:  Uranus  3    vs.    no.30 seed:  Styx  7

no.4 seed:  The Sun  12    vs.   no.20 seed:  Callisto  10

no.12 seed:  Earth  11    vs.   no.28 seed:  Ceres  7 

no.8 seed:  The Moon  14    vs.   no.24 seed:  Ganymede  5

no.16 seed:  Triton  7    vs.   no.32 seed:  Cerberus  5 </