Now is the best time to work on your game


Friday 10 July

1, Richard Gray - Wendy Gray

2, Edward Betteto - William Pollett

3, Lynanne Bolton - Peter Donnellan

Saturday 11 July

1, Carol Eastham - Veronica Boyce

2, Richard Hall - Tim Mardon

3, Claude Guay - Sharon Shanahan

Monday 13 July

1, Patricia Siddle - Gill Gray

2, Inger Mesna - John Rayner

3, Gertrude Barker - Jane Smith

Tuesday 14 July


1, Jean Schilling - Tim Mardon

2, M Louise Payne - Katyna Rabain

3, Mark Stevens - Malcolm Moseley

Wednesday 15 July

1, John Rayner - Charles Hall

2, Gertrude Barker - Jane Smith

3, Sue Hodge - John Hodge

Thursday 16 July

1, Lynanne Bolton - Peter Donnellan

2, David Sykes - Edward Betteto

3, Judith Bussell - Charles Hall

Covid-19 has had a devastating effect on the world in which we live with families, communities and businesses facing challenges that most of us could never even imagine. Normality seems so far away and long ago, and it is hard to say when it will ever return and what it will look like when it does. One thing we do know, however, is that we really don’t know what the future holds and stressing about it doesn’t make it any better. What we can do is to use this lockdown and post-lockdown period to try and improve ourselves — emotionally, physically, in seeking further education and learning, and where possible learning new skills to adapt to what the world is going to look like post-Covid.

And yes, learning new skills can extend to hobbies and that should include enhancing your bridge skills. There is no shortage of chances to play given the ton of hard work put in by locals Peter Donnellan, Bill Pollett and others with online games available via the club many times a week and other games available on websites such as Bridge Base Online, Fun Bridge and others- so get on board!

Case in point is the crazily successful online Teams competition recently initiated by the club ­— a healthy 18 teams (77 players) took part in 45 matches played over five weeks with a good number of our very newest members trying out the teams game as well as a strong turnout from more established players.

Emerging from the smoke as winners after this robust schedule were:

Division 1 — Alan Douglas, Ed Betteto, David Cordon, Fabian Hupe, Jack Rhind and David Sykes

Division 2 — Lorna Anderson, Patricia Colmet, Annabelle Mann and Heather Woolf

Division 3 — Louise Foden-Pattinson, Gill Butterfield, Marion and Duncan Silver.

Well done to all these players, and if your name is not one of the 12 above make it a goal to get there; practice, practice, practice, post-mortem, post-mortem, post-mortem! You can’t just turn up each week and hope to get better during a competition — just doesn’t happen that way.

So, if you want to play the same bridge in 2020 that you played in 2019 just show up each week, but if you want to improve you have to study your mistakes after the game and learn from them.

Elsewhere, a number of locals took part in the Caribbean CAC BBO Championship pairs and when I last looked after two rounds we had three Bermuda pairs in the top ten! Bill Pollett and Charles Hall were in second, a whisker behind the leaders and David Sykes and Ed Betteto are in sixth with Diana Diel and Elizabeth McKee in seventh, also saw Delmont and Marilyn Simmons in the top 20. Well done to all these pairs, and I will bring you the final results when the event is completed.

This week’s hand is a low-level part-score hand, but this is where the points are won at Duplicate pairs and where a plus score brings great rewards. Once again, the theme is trump management and using the trumps in the hand with fewer trumps to do what trumps should do — ruff. See figure 1.

Dealer East E/W Vulnerable

The Bidding was over quickly — East passed, South opened one Club, West passed and North bid two Clubs which became the final contract. Notice that at pairs the final pass by West is not good — she should make a balancing double and partner can bid two Spades which will make or at the very least force North-South to three Clubs.

West led the Ace — King of Diamonds and then switched to a Spade and the play went predictably after that. South won the Ace and rushed to do what players love to do — draw trumps, as soon as possible — especially if it entails taking a finesse!

The Club finesse loses to the King and East, an experienced player, fired back a Club and declarer now began to shift in his seat! Declarer won and tried a Spade, but East won and played the last Club and the hand was over — declarer lost two Spades, a Heart, two Diamonds and a Club for down one!

Declarer went wrong after winning the Spade — he must plan to ruff one of the losing spades in hand and so must immediately exit with a spade after winning the Ace — now the defence cannot stop declarer from winning one Spade, two Hearts, four Clubs and the Spade ruff for eight tricks — contract made!

This is similar to a hand here of two weeks ago, but I make no apology for that. Bad trump management is perhaps the single most common fault by early stage bridge players and most of this comes from being afraid that the opponents can ruff something — that is rarely the case unless the bidding or opening lead suggest otherwise, and declarers should plan their play calmly without stressing over potential ruffs.

Postscript — More sad news as we learnt of the passing of Garfield Karpiak at the young age of 66 — Garfield was a free spirit who played at the club in the mid-Nineties mainly with Gerry Van Der Meer and they were both hooked on the game. Garfield met his wife Laura at the club and they have been living happily in North Carolina for some years. Our thoughts are with Laura and his family and friends.

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Published Jul 18, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Jul 18, 2020 at 7:23 am)

Now is the best time to work on your game

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