THE Poms put one over their Aussie counterparts in lockdown, at least on the virtual backgammon board.

A team of four North-East players, representing Newcastle, beat a quartet from the city’s namesake in New South Wales, in a 10,000-mile Ashes-style clash.

Over the last four weeks they have faced each other in a round-robin online version of the game, traditionally played with 15 checkers per player and two dice, on a distinctive square board

The Newcastle upon Tyne team, of Martin Barkwill, Tim Cross, Polidoros Lapidakis and Gary Bratton, lifted the inaugural “urn”, with a 10-6 victory.

Skipper Mr Barkwill said team-mate Mr Cross proved the match-winner, remaining unbeaten in his four games.

“Tim is ranked number two in the UK so we had a pretty formidable team.

“I don’t think they realised that at the outset, but I’m sure they’ll be aware when there’s a re-match. They’ll want revenge no doubt.”

The tournament gave players a chance to play competitively at a time social distancing prevents face-to-face matches.