Spade Yateley & Hawley BC Club
Bridge Diary of an Addict
18th March 2018

National Pairs - Regional Final:

Playing with a regular partner in the National Pairs Regional Final (Richmond).

Not our finest session - both played poorly at times and it was a strong field so each error cost.

Just the Highlights today from where it did work.....!

The Highs and Lows:

Session 1:

Hand 2:     Partner played well and Ops didn't defend as well they could, if the duck a  it works out much better for them

Hand 5:     I got everything right here and had room to take every chance (all paying off)

Hand 23:   We have a slam here but nobody bid it and we were not going beyond game, 1100 was a good score

Hand 24:   Something odd here, I counted my hand and had 9 HCPs but the record says I had 14 - I passed and it was passed out, good for us!  Odd though

Session 2:

Hand 6:      A little lucky here, a  lead and then another gets South on lead to lead a  through, it is all over then

Hand 9:     We defended well here, great Q switch partner

Hand 15:   We took the first 4 tricks here and it was a good lead.  Ops under pressure now and so we took another 2 tricks

Hand 18:   Ops need to play a trump here, I cannot really  make 11 tricks - I got the  right too to set-up an entry in dummy

Hand 23:   Ops defended poorly here, I was given this score

Playing at CBC tomorrow (if the weather is ok to open the club)

17th March 2018

Games and Friends:

A relaxed morning then off to see our house and found out about the bath, heating, shed and the chain  - all are fine!

Then on to Dorothy's for coffee and a chat and also sorting out our remaining league matches.  A plea for help from John too and so off to his to solve his PC problems and then home to chill for a bit.

Games and Take-Away at friends in the evening (like we used to!)

We played team games, just lost on Trivial Pursuit but won the 2 games of Movies and TV trivia - nice to catch up with our friends again.

Playing tomorrow in the  National Pairs Heat tomorrow (we are not playing in the Final though, even if we qualify)

16th March 2018


Playing with an new partner in the Final of the Beryl Doughty Cup (we are not in it though)

Well done Derek & Martin for winning the Beryl Doughty in a close finish with Pamela & John!

Really enjoyed tonight and we did well until the last 2 rounds overall (so a green thumbs up despite the overall score!)

Only 5 Tables again though, we HAVE to get more players to break even financially and to get meaningful scores, come and play.......!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:    I was in the best contract making the max tricks but others did better, not fair!

Hand 2:    Ops landed in the right contract here

Hand 4:    I opened 2 and should have opened 2, when partner jumped to game in s I had a feeling and so went to 6

Hand 7:    Ops can make this on a compete cross-ruff I think

Hand 10:  Ops did what they should but others didn't

Hand 11:  I mis-played the  here, sorry partner

Hand 12:  Partner played brilliantly here!  Ops helped by ducking the first

Hand 13:  Partner could have insisted on s here (we both felt this)

Hand 14:  I mis-played this badly, sorry partner

Hand 16:   I played this well but Ops didn't take their s

Hand 17:  I thought a rescue was needed here but it would have been better left in 1NT, sorry partner

Hand 21:  Double is not important, they bid a slam so I knew it was top or bottom - we actually would have saved a little by not doubling as another pair made all 13!

Hand 22:  Ops bid and made what they should, perhaps I should have gone to 3 and they may have gone up?

Hand 24:  Ops too ambitious here, careful defending needed but we got it right

Going to our new house tomorrow to measure up and meet the Vendors.  Then "Old School" games with our friends in the evening

16th March 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with an irregular partner in a regular session

Nice to see him out of the house too, a lovely man who brightened the bridge room today and played really well too.

One mis-understanding today (my fault) but otherwise, all felt comfortable and right (despite some tricky cards).

My certificate arrived today for being a prize winner in the Annual Masterpoints lists (Regional Master category), £20 too.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:    Ops were a little ambitious here and we scored well by taking game off

Hand 6:    Very hard to bid this though I considered 6 but backed out - nobody bid the slam though

Hand 8:    We have game points but game is not there.  I was lucky Ops discarded a  so the Q dropped and I made it

Hand 9:    I mis-understood partners  bid after the double but did say I am not sure (and we have a card!) - Ops were in the wrong contract but can make game in either major and didn't need to lose the

Hand 12:  Ops had an opening hand but best not to open I think, we quietly defended well and got a good score

Hand 16:  I opened this 3 (as is my style) but partner jumped to game, perhaps we were both wrong here but more my fault than his for opening, sorry partner

Hand 17:  I defended badly here missing my second  but fortunately it was enough to double

Hand 23:  We are in the right contract and played perfectly by partner to make the maximum tricks available

Playing again after dinner

15th March 2018


Playing with my life partner in a regular session

Vee asked for a game as hadn't played in a while and my partner cancelled for tonight so we agreed to play.

We had a good start tonight but a disastrous last round dropped us from 57 to 49%

Shame, really enjoyed tonight and Vee and I had fun.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:    Partner didn't take the finesse

Hand 4:    Ops didn't draw the trumps so we cross ruffed as Ops took AK before the trumps

Hand 6:    A friendly lead and I took every finesse as not pressured, all worked

Hand 7:    Ops went for the wrong slam, they were not alone but good score for us

Hand 10:  I bid twice on my own, my fault, sorry partner

Hand 11:  Ops pushed too far and I doubled

Hand 12:  I didn't take my K (second player plays low!), sorry partner

Hand 13:  Ops didn't find the  ruff so I made 9 tricks

Hand 14:  Ops found the slam, not many did

Hand 15:  Not the round to arrow switch!!!  One of the top pairs and 2 tricky hands, this one I bid weakly and partner jumped to game, not this time partner

Hand 16:  There is an argument not to pre-empt unless your suit is very good before partner has bid, this hand is a good example.  I don't blame partner but against this pair with best defence, this was not good.

Hand 21:  Ops didn't find game and we defended well to hold it to 10 tricks

Playing twice again tomorrow

14th March 2018


Playing with a regular partner in final of the YHBC Teams Series.

Vee hosted the Improvers but 1 short to make 3 tables - still, Vee hosted the sit-out pair and went through the bidding and discussed the hands so was a useful teaching session for them.

We only had 8 tables in the Teams and 4 teams challenged tonight.  We were 3rd but it was close!  Enjoyed tonight and we did reasonably well.

There was an issue with the memory stick tonight and so the results will be uploaded tomorrow (Thursday 15th Mar18) - I will update the diary then

Playing with Vee at CBC tomorrow

13th March 2018


Played really well tonight, first 4 games back to back and won all 4 though all were close and the last one we were 11 down and won 23-21, love playing with Kerry!

Lost 2 narrow games and stayed until the end and still played well on the last game, stamina is getting there now!

Teams at YHBC tomorrow night as Vee hosts the Improvers.

12th March 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular session

Good to see partner again as she has been away for a few weeks (swapping Snow for Sun!!!)

We played well though both could have done slightly better, both tired though.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 4:    Ops cannot make this (though it is a reasonable contract), we got a good score just by defending properly.  If partner plays the KS on first 2 tricks they can make game (must have happened on other tables but partner was on the ball).

Hand 9:    Ops were too ambitious here and also let partner make an extra

Hand 10:  Ops bid and made the right contract

Hand 11:  Ops paused and nearly bid on then passed, lucky for us

Hand 13:  Ops made 12 tricks here as they should

Hand 17:  Poor double, sorry partner

Hand 19:  I made an extra trick here, I did well to catch the Q and then set-up 2s to throw s away

Hand 20:  Ops bid their hand twice here (1NT and then 2) with no bidding from partner....

Hand 21:  I made an extra trick here (as a few others did too), it helped when East played a low  and I guessed right

Hand 22:  Ops bid and made the right contract

Playing Badminton tomorrow

11th March 2018

Hants GP Swiss Teams:

Playing with a regular partner and friends from Camberley in the Hants & IOW Green Pointed Swiss Teams.

Colin drove me and David and Jill met us there.  We all made good time again and settled in.

We had a few wobbles to start and a little despondent at lunch as we lost the first 2 matches and drew the next.

After lunch we managed another draw (should have been a win) but then won the last 3 (finishing on a big high!).  We went from 2nd from bottom to 7th and won the Ascenders Prize!!!

We both did well on our X-Imps too so the NGS should be ok and we got 1.26 Greens for the day (2.26 for Jill and I for the weekend).

I thought this would make me a National Master but mis-counted, I needed 1 to get to 70 and need 75, so still just over 3 points to go.....

The Highs and Lows:

Match 1, Lost 6-14:

Hand 2:   We talked Ops out of 3NT here and defeated their part score but not sure 3NT is really there but our team mates made it!

Hand 3:    I let the slam through that cannot make.  The s was a frozen suit and I opened it, drat

Hand 6:    We defeated 3NT (as we should), team mates made theirs plus 2!!!

Hand 7:   Team mates went for the slam that wasn't there

Match 2, Lost 3-17:

Hand 12:   I was too ambitious with my big hand here, sorry partner

Match 3, Draw:

Hand 17:   We didn't bid game but made 10 tricks, Ops defeated game at their table

Match 4, Draw:

Hand 23:   We bid game, team mates defended a part score and held it to 9 too

Match 5, Win 16-4:

Hand 31:   We defended well here taking every trick at the right time.  Ops let me back in with the Q trick 2 and I then took a  before crossing to partners s then A

Hand 35:   Ops tried to be clever but chose the wrong hand to do it on.  We doubled and defended well

Match 6, Win 14-6:

Hand 39:   Ops missed game and team mate bid theirs

Hand 40:   Team mates in the wrong contract here and game made against us

Hand 42:   We both defeated Ops contract here for a double plus

Match 7, Win 20-0:

Hand 44:   Amazing here!!!  Partner played brilliantly to make this.  If they had taken the A early we would have bid one off for a flat board as team mates had +200

Hand 45:   Ops missed game here and team mates bid it.

Hand 46:   We defended this well, Ops got the  wrong and allowed us back in to take the last s

Hand 47:   We have a slam on here and Ops got in the way, I gave partner the choice to leave the double or bid a major and she chose to pass (close call), fortunately, nobody bid the slam so we have a big score!

Playing at CBC tomorrow and my regular partner is back from holiday too, will be good to see her!

10th March 2018

Hants GP Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in the Hants & IOW Green Pointed Swiss Pairs.

We drove separately to this and both had a clear easy run there arriving early.  Just after us was Trevor & Barbara and Linda & Sylvia - a local event!!!

We all started reasonably well and we carried on a steady performance but had 2 bad matches and a narrow loss to a strong local pair (who finished 2nd overall).

Looking at the results, we finished higher but so pleased to see Linda & Sylvia winning 5 out of 7 matches (more green points than us!!!) - well done girls, stunning!!!!

Extra news, we had our offer accepted on the house in Mytchett!!!  We can afford this one and all looks good, fingers crossed we are done now!!!  House link HERE

The Highs and Lows:

Match 1, Win 16-4:

Hand 2:   I made an extra trick here by running the s and squeezing the Ops

Match 2, Win 15-5:

Hand 11:   I managed to make an extra trick here by getting the s right and Ops didn't take their Ace

Match 3, Lost 8-12:

Hand 18:   My fault here, terrible to overcall with this hand, sorry partner

Hand 19:   Ops pushed too far here

Hand 20:   Partner could have made one more trick here to save a bit of the score

Hand 21:   Ops tried for a slam missing 2 Aces, we did nothing here but happy to take the score

Match 4, Win 20-0:

Hand 22:   Partner got this just right, perfect play on the s and Ops never switched to the until the last trick

Hand 24:   Partner played brilliantly here to make an extra trick (which was needed to make the contract!)

Hand 25:   I did well to make this and Ops didn't make the switch so I got my losers away on the s

Hand 27:   We pushed Ops too far here and then doubled

Match 5, Lost 0-20:

Hand 31:   I chose the wrong contract here, 4 or 3N is good, sorry partner

Hand 33:   Ops bid and made what they should, others made a trick more in defence though

Hand 34:   Sorry partner, bad double by me here

Match 6, Win 13-7:

Hand 37:   I squeezed an extra trick here, Ops started the s for me

Hand 41:   I can make this by running the , I chose to use the s to throw my s - sorry partner

Match 7, Lost 4-16:

Hand 43:   Ops bid a cold slam, not everyone did!

Hand 44:   Ops have game on, I made an extra trick through good play but........... This was not a good sacrifice!

Hand 46:   Ops bid game, it is cold but not many bid it

Hand 47:   I made a passive lead and we waited for the tricks to come to us.

Hand 49:   We bid s and partner bid up to 4 and Ops missed the optimum  contract

Playing in the  Hampshire Congress  again tomorrow (Teams)

9th March 2018


Playing with a new partner in a regular session

Marion's partner is away for a month so looking for partners, mine is also away so we agreed to team up.

We had no mis-understandings, some luck too (but not always good!).  Really enjoyed the session and would like to play again if we both free.

I warned her that I am prone to over-bid and ironically, I under-bid more than over!!!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 7:     This should have been a good save against 5 but nobody made it!  Partner could have saved 1 trick too but wouldn't have changed the score

Hand 8:     Phantom sacrifice here, sorry partner

Hand 12:   Partner played this perfectly!  Took a risk playing the 4th but they broke nicely, well done!

Hand 17:   Ops played the wrong card and so we took 2 more s - we were on for holding it to 10 anyway which would have still been a good score for us.

Hand 18:   I couldn't see how to make this so played all the s and watched for discards, then played Q and let it run and all of a sudden, 10 tricks!

Hand 19:   Ops have a slam in s but nobody found it.  I gave a trick away which would have saved the score slightly

Hand 22:   We got the defence just right here - says 12 tricks can be made but nobody did

Playing in the  Hampshire Congress  this weekend

9th March 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular session

We did well today an both declared well (other than me on one hand!) - I cannot seem to get partner to play Attitude on my Ace leads though, GRRRRR

Good to see Colin & Angela above 50% and another solid performance from Geoff & Frances, well done all!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:    Partner played out of her skin to make this, superb play partner!  A low level contract but shows that they all count!

Hand 4:    I did well to make this, Ops didn't count the s to ruff, phew!

Hand 6:    I thought this would be a good sacrifice for Ops as our 3 makes, it seems other tables didn't push as hard and allowed to make NT or 2

Hand 7:    I had an in-between hand here, with 10HCP I can open this 1 or 2.  I decided it had very little merit to it so opened 2 and this worked out well as a sacrifice

Hand 9:    Ops bid s and with 3, I think they should support (despite te 7 s!!!), shame I didn't start with a  for partner to ruff straight away though

Hand 10:   We missed the  slam here (I am not good at bidding minor slams) but made the right choice over s or NTs

Hand 16:   We missed the slam here but not all made it, I played this one sensibly

Hand 19:  I could not have got this more wrong!!!!  Sorry partner, terrible play by me

Hand 23:  Ops could have doubled my 1NT and then found a better contract, we defended well here too.

Hand 24:  Ops played well here right until the end when they didn't capture partner's K

Margaret goes away for a couple of weeks tomorrow, have a great holiday!  Next week a group go for another Bridge holiday too!

Playing again after dinner and in the  Hampshire Congress  this weekend

8th March 2018


Playing with a regular partner in third of the CBC Thursday Championships

We have had 2 mid 50 scores so far, consistent but not electric so far.  Unfortunately, tonight was not good!

Both of us rate our declarer play as an asset, but not tonight.

Margaret and Margaret did well tonight though, well done both!

One plus for the day is that we loved the house we viewed and made an offer, early days as yet but hoping we get it!  Link HERE

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:     I figured the lead was a singleton, so lost 2 s to then end play East for 10 tricks

Hand 6:     Ops didn't finesse the

Hand 7:     I fell for the J and then lost to the 10, drat - we should be in 6 though....

Hand 8:     I should have been 1 off here but finessed the doubleton Q!

Hand 12:   Partner lost a here when they drop and didn't play J on the lead

Hand 14:   Partner didn't finesse the  twice and most made 11 tricks (12 is there too)

Hand 15:   Partner felt I should have doubled here rather than just bidding 1 - we missed 4 - should I bid twice or stronger?

Hand 20:   We got the bidding wrong here and should be in s

Hand 21:   A helpful lead here, then under leading the A helped me to make 12 tricks.  Odd matrix though, how often do you see so few makable contracts!

Hand 22:   Ops bid s so we never found the  tricks, drat

Hand 24:   With the Ops ending up in 2 of a major, I balance with a double and one off is a great result.

Playing twice tomorrow.

7th March 2018


Playing with a regular partner and Team mates in the BBL (Home match)

After Fish & Chips, I drove us to Dorothy's and we set-up ready for the match.

We were leading before tonight but now joint 2nd with 2 matches to go, all very tight!

We were 10 Imps up at half time but lost 49-0 in the second half!!!!

Shuffle and deal so no han file etc but.......

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:     Team mates double their Ops in an ambitious contract and gain 500!

Hand 3:     Team mates didn't bid the slam

Hand 4:     I made 3NT (very tricky), team mates took 2NT off 2!

Hand 12:   We bid game here, team mates Ops in a part score

Hand 13:   We bid a sensible 3 but I felt that if we can make 9 tricks in a minor, why not 3NT.  4 off is why not!

Hand 15:    We pushed to game here but only 9 tricks on, I think we are right to bid slim games but didn't work this time

Hand 22:    Partner forgot Puppet Stayman here and we ended up in the wrong game (doubled) - we had -500 and team mates -430, ouch!

Hand 23:    Both sides in 3NT but cannot be made, team mates let it through unfortunately.  I think here we should have stayed in 2 but wouldn't have saved much of the score this time

Vee hosted the Improvers tonight, only 2 tables but good to see Chris & Carole on top again.  I don't think Rosalie and Marianne can be caught now and I think they have just about made the move to the main group too, keep up the good work all!

Nick and the team had a great win tonight in the Sylvia Rose Finals too, now only 3.5 behind the leaders!!!

Playing in round 3 of the CBC Thursday Championships tomorrow

7th March 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner at Woking as a practice session before the  Hampshire Congress  this weekend.

I offered to drive today so picked Margaret up at 12:20 (she is playing at Woking with another partner).

We didn't do much wrong but not much that was brilliant either, still, a few things came up and that was the idea (ready for the weekend).

Margaret did well today (good sign for tonight) and Geoff & Frances did exceptionally well - well done all!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:     I should have made this (even though it says 9 is all that is there), if I end play North rather than playing the  myself

Hand 4:     We got the defence right here, took courage for me to duck the  when South played low to dummy but it took the contract off by doing so

Hand 12:   I feel I did well here to make 7 tricks in s when Ops can make 7 tricks in s!

Hand 18:  Neither of us felt we could bid game here, I bid 2s but didn't think I was worth any more, sorry.

Hand 19:  We got this right too, good lead partner and I found the J entry for the rest of the s

Hand 20:  Ops got the right here, better if I give up on the s and play a as it turns out

Hand 23:  Ops bid their hand twice here and partner doubled.

Playing in a BBL match tonight after Fish & Chips with Margaret!

6th March 2018


A day off today as had a few things going on:

  1. Vee home!!!!!  Picked him up from the station at 08:30, he had a great but hectic time (rained most of the time even in the East!)
  2. Houses to see (8 of them!!!) - we also had an email about another which we have arranged a viewing on for Thursday 8th March.

If interested, here is our schedule for today (not bad considering Vee has been up for over 24 hours and a full day today!):

10am Mytchett 12 Noon F'Boro

12:40pm Ash

Needs a lot of work and not quite right for us We loved this one!  A real winner but needs extending at the back and we cannot afford it Needs new heating but in very good order.  However, bedrooms too small

1.15pm Ash Vale

2pm F'Boro(2)

2.40pm F'Boro(3)

A few kitchen handles and door fronts need replacing but nothing else wrong, our current favourite! Lovely but would need to extend, would consider it but there are houses "ready to go" NO!

4pm Aldershot

4.10pm Aldershot(2)

5pm (Thurs 8th Mar) Mytchett

Tiny kitchen, no parking other than driveway and over-populated estate Similar to previous house but the Agent couldn't open the door so didn't' see it! This looks lovely and is a possible favourite, will see on the 8th!


We had a drink and a chat with Dorothy after the Mytchett house which was nice and also about time we said thanks to all who have offered so much support with the house hunting:

Margaret B, Chris P, Jill C, Val F, Dorothy H, Alan B and our lodgers!

Home and dinner then change and on to badminton (link at the top to our club site, link HERE to the league site and then click Adults, Mens 4s, Division 3, Eagles and the match vs Nomads - I cannot direct link I'm afraid)

The match results have not yet been posted but we lost - great experience though and I had good scores until the end when I was utterly drained!!!

Worth a mention as well, Woking Results tonight.........  Well done Margaret!!!!!

Playing at Woking (afternoon) and a BBL match tomorrow

5th March 2018


Packed a lot into work today as off now until Friday!  House hunting all day tomorrow after collecting Vee from the station.

Played online Bridge tonight with Mark (he couldn't make it to the club), played 4 Tourney's (12 hands each).  Saved a screenshot in link above (though it is just our section results, not overall)

We won the first

13th in second

4th in third

2nd in fourth

A good performance overall, pleased (75% in the last one too!)

11 tables at CBC tonight, phenomenal win by our BBL Captain, well done!!!!

Houses and Badminton match tomorrow (my first in 8 or 9 years!) - not got a strong team but will be good to play competitively again!

4th March 2018


Not much today, done the chores (washing etc) and keeping house in order.  Shopping done too.

Played Poker a lot and another Bridge Tourney online (BBO), came 4th out of 110!

CBC is open tomorrow night but my partner is away and my substitute partner can't make it.  We have agreed to play online tomorrow instead.

3rd March 2018

Snow (Last of!!!):

Relaxing day today watching the snow melt away (almost all gone now!).  One lodger drove to Cornwall today and has arrived safely.  I drove the other too town for work and then home for pizza and online cards (Poker and Bridge!).

Had an email from our chairman at YHBC and he has been ill in Tenerife but on the mend now which is a relief.  Weather not been great there either as storms have hit the islands too.

We now have a week of rain but, hopefully, that won't prevent us playing bridge as normal this week!

From the houses we want to see on Tuesday, 3 have now been sold (my top 3 too!!!) - hope we get this sorted soon as starting to get me down now.

2nd March 2018


Working at home today, again.  More snow and only left the house to get lunch (lodger drove!).

Kept websites up to date today too and just TV and a bit of online Poker.

Not much to write really!!!

1st March 2018


Working at home today, again.  Amber and Red weather warnings today and Bath University has now closed (which means the Congress has been cancelled).

We assumed it would be and so prepared for it yesterday.  We have lost no money at least (mostly thanks to Jill).

Hoping to re-arrange my Lady Rose match for 12th March but will know later today or tomorrow.

CBC, YHBC and Farnham all remain closed this week.

No plans for tonight, may play online games (cannot watch too much TV!!!).

28th February 2018


Working at home today (and the rest of the week) - I am lucky enough to be able to do this.  Especially today as have had a lot of Bridge admin to deal with (sorting out matches, the Bath congress weekend and cancelling Bridge sessions at both local clubs and advertising BBL AGM and EoS Pairs).

It is looking likely that the Congress in Bath will be cancelled (or we will pull out) but waiting to find out on Friday (a bit late notice really as we travel down Saturday morning all being well!!!).

So, for a bridge addict, no bridge this week now and maybe none at the weekend!!!  I may play on BBO instead.........

27th February 2018


Everyone left work early today and I have come home to work from here.  The minute we left work, the snow stopped!

Still, better safe than sorry.  Can't imagine many will go to Badminton tonight so am staying home to catch up on TV in the warm.

Lady Rose match tomorrow (weather permitting) vs a tough team (F Hinden and co) in Surbiton.

Update on earlier post

Decided to play badminton tonight in the end, I am so close to the club and a few others said they were going.  I also had a call to play in a match (my first for 9 years!!!) next Tuesday so thought I should keep my game going.

Am sure it is a song but, "Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone!" (Joni Mitchell)

With Vee away, I am doing more than usual, shopping, cooking (for me and lodgers), feeding cats twice a day (6am and 6pm), emptying bins and putting them out, washing laundry (Sunday night and tonight after badminton), playing bridge, working, cleaning, washing up, bridge admin (including learning about excluding players from NGS and how we do it via the EBU and Scorebridge), looking out for weather warnings (will find out about YHBC this week then email the members tomorrow morning), sorting out teams and availability for matches and writing this!!!  Still, what else would I do?  Come home soon Vee.....

Badminton was really good tonight, icy walk there and back and only 11 players but I played non-stop and won most games, playing well.  Tired now though!

Have sent off e-mails for 8 more houses to view next week when Vee is back (we are taking next Tuesday off to go and see them all).  Hopefully we will love one of these:


Fleet Road Farnborough    Nursery Cl Fleet    Wey Close Ash    Old Pasture Rd Camberley



Ambleside Cl Mytchett    Malvern Rd Fboro    Fairfax Rd Fboro    Cypress Grove Ash Vale

26th February 2018


Playing with an irregular partner in the second round of the Club Championships (we are not part of it though)

Had a bad day today and in a poor mood.  Found out that if we had appealed our ruling at the weekend, we would have succeeded (but it is too late now).  Bad news about the house too and I am on my own.

Still, nice to see Mark again and have a game with him (tonight and next Monday while Jo is away).

I was far from at my best and so amazingly poor choices made, sorry partner.  We rescued the score with some good bits though and my declarer play was on form at least!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:    No lead so no s made (all goes on the long s)

Hand 9:    Daft double, sorry partner, no excuses

Hand 10:  I played this calmly and concentrated, Ops didn't take both s and I got the right

Hand 13:   Sorry partner, I thought game was on but everything is wrong here, too ambitious

Hand 14:   Sorry partner, I didn't know what the 4 was but agree, I am daft passing it!

Hand 16:  Ops got a bit ambitious here and I was mean and doubled

Hand 17:  A tiny contract and a big score!  Well done partner and played brilliantly here (still stunned Ops didn't bid again though)

Hand 18:  I bid stayman over 2NT and partner bid 3, I then bid s and partner raised - I squeezed an extra trick as the s came in and no switch

Hand 19:  No switch so 12 tricks here

Hand 20:  Ops over bid here

Hand 21:   Sorry partner, I am best off passing here rather than doubling - even then, I should leave you in 2

Hand 23: Partner is right here but I maintain my  switch rather than returning the  was right here and the  was my entry - still, apologies partner

Playing badminton tomorrow.

25th February 2018

National Masters Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in a the EBU National Masters Pairs

A lovely breakfast (we both enjoyed it) and then a little time to relax before we start (11am).  2 sessions of 2 matches today (all 11 boards).

Just one win today but 3 close matches (worth noting, the win was against the winning pair who only lost 1 match!)

Session 3

Hand 9  We defended this well, partner wasn't hopeful with his lead but it worked well!  Ops didn't get the s right and we played well

Hand 12  We need to bid 5 here to push them up or have a good sacrifice - unfortunately, partner hesitated and so I couldn't bid it.

Hand 20  We were cautious here but it paid off!  Only game despite the huge West hand, well stopped partner

We are off the bottom now and beaten the leaders too!

Session 4

Hand 13  We are the only pair to find game (the only pair playing EW!!!) it was tight but I made it

Not many big swings here and we did just about everything down the middle, just slightly off-centre overall though but happy with how we played


A much better day today but unfortunate that only one win, still, all good matches and nice Ops

A great run home and most of the chores done by 7pm, just something to eat and relax and will then update today and yesterdays entries here with a bit more detail.

24th February 2018

National Masters Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in a the EBU National Masters Pairs

I am just beneath National Master (though I am there on paper when the points are added to my account), partner is a Premier National Master so I have to play in his group.

We had a great run down and got to the hotel without issue and were nice and relaxed, checked in straight away and rooms are lovely.

We start the event and we have 9 rounds of 11 board matches, we won our first 2 matches then lost the2 of the next 3 (horribly!!!) so went from 3rd to 2nd from bottom going in tomorrow!

Links below to the sessions and also links to the individual hands (click the "Hand x"

Session 1

Hand 19  Ops look for the slam and partners doubles for a H lead which defeats the slam, they had no choice but to bid it in the end though and we quietly take it off.

Hand 30  I open light and so we end up playing the hand the wrong way and get the worse lead for us - sorry partner, I cannot make it on a  lead

Hand 33  Ops open a light 1NT and I double, they escape but I double that too for a nice score

3rd after the first 3 matches and only just behind 2nd.  A good start!

Session 2

Hand 4  I am so unhappy about this.  Ops open 1NT and I bid 2 (showing s and a minor).  Ops double and partner re-doubles.  Ops ask and I say "we are in a good contract".  This was my understanding.  Ops pass then I pass and Ops bid 2 then 2NT and all pass.  2NT makes and then Ops call the director saying they have been damaged by our mis-info.  The Ops claiming this already said "I think it is a rescue", still, director rules against us and adjusts the score to 2XX going off 4, heartbreaking and we cannot recover this.

Hand 13  I was pushed to 5 and cannot make it.  Should have doubled 5 but it still wouldn't be great (though better!)

We are now last (largely thanks to the director ruling)

Breakfast early then start again at 11 for 4 more matches (2 sets of 2)

23rd February 2018


Playing with a regular monthly partner in a regular club session

Another low turn out tonight, it is cold though but we need to get some more players here....

Partner has been really unwell for a while so this our first session since last year!  So nice to have him back, he is great company.

Partner started off brilliantly whilst I made blunders, then we swapped as he got tired and lost concentration - a really fun session though, thanks partner

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   A nasty trump split here, if I don't take the doomed finesse, I save a trick and it is much better, sorry partner

Hand 2:   I should have been 1 off but played the at the end instead of the winning , drat!

Hand 8:   I squeezed an extra trick here getting the trumps and right - lead was K though not A it shows

Hand 9:   Unlucky Ops, declarer revoked and gave a 2 trick penalty

Hand 10:   Only us in the slam - our bidding was 1, 1, 3, 6.....

Hand 12:   All as it should be here but 3 others made an extra trick so good for us

Hand 16:   Partner passed in 3rd seat here and it didn't work out this time

Hand 17:   I took the  finesse even though it didn't look like it was needed, it was and it worked well!

Hand 20:   I am not keen on Ace leads without the K, as I held the K, I think I should have played it under the Ace, then if partner carries on I get a ruff and we take this off

Hand 21:   Partner needs to bid his s here but we started at a high level and lost confidence

Off to Daventry for the National Masters Pairs for the weekend in the morning.

23rd February 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

Worked at home again today, much better but still low on energy.  Vee now on his way to Malaysia (unfortunate timing as I tried to do our Tesco delivery this morning and the account is locked and needs his email to reset!!!)  He has stopped off at Dubai and text me the email password so we can eat next week now!!!

Loaded last nights hands for CBC and all back on track.

We were up and down but the Ups were much better than the Downs!!!  Enjoyed the session and partner was in good spirits too (as was I, very jovial!!!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 4:   A hairy contract here but played well and a nice finish to the session

Hand 5:   I played well here (our first hand of the session!) and just got home in my pre-empt getting the s right

Hand 6:   I got the right here finessing the 10 on trick 2 so was able to set-up the hand, a switch and my entry back is gone, lucky really

Hand 8:   Well bid partner, I had a big hand and bid to 3NT, partner felt more was there and didn't ask, just bid to 6!!!

Hand 9:   Partner opened light here but it worked out well, great sacrifice

Hand 10:   Ops played really well here, we were simply out-played

Hand 11:   Whoops!

Hand 12:   I got the right and the for the 12th trick

Hand 13:   Unlucky Ops, need to ruff the s and not let me back in, it all unravelled a bit for them here

Hand 17:   I open 1 and partner raises to 5!!!  I think 5 of a minor is a rarely a good score so bid up to the slam which was cold, phew!

Hand 20:   I had a big hand but not too big so stayed low but really, I must double for the second time then partner bids her s, sorry partner

Hand 23:   I was lucky not to have a  played here

Hand 24:   Well played partner!  Says 10 is always there but needed careful play and you concentrated well here

Playing again after dinner at YHBC

22nd February 2018

Alex Horne:

Worked at home today and also got some bridge admin done ready for the next 2 weekends.

Have upgraded CBC ad YHBC to the latest versions of Bridgewebs and made a few tweaks to the settings on both sites - much more flexibility within admin now!

Went for a quick meal in Camberley tonight before going to Camberley Theatre to see Alex Horne and the Horne Section (comedy and music)

My Boss was there with his wife too and we had a chat at the start and interval - the show was fantastic and we laughed almost constantly, just what we needed!

The humour was at my level (so not for everyone!!!)

I noticed the hands were missing from the results so have asked them to be sent and I will load ASAP for Camberley.

Playing twice tomorrow and also saying goodbye to Vee who goes away again for 2 weeks (as the temperature drops here he goes to Malaysia and India!!!)

21st February 2018


My cold is getting better but no energy tonight so stayed home and Vee took the Improvers.

I have updated the Master Points lists as 2017 came out today, pleased to see Margaret 8th in her category in Surrey (National and Premier National Masters).

I was 10th overall in Surrey, top in my category (Regional / Premier Regional Masters) and top at Camberley, so not a bad year!

A slight indulgence, but links for me since I started:

2017     Top of Level 3 (Surrey though, 3rd Nationally)

2016     Just outside the top 10 in Level 3

2015     Top in Level 4

2014     Top in Level 5

2013     3rd in Level 6

Vee had 3 full tables with him playing (exactly 50%!).  Well done Colin & Angela, great score!

Nice to see Marianne & Rosalie do well in the main group too, just outside the points.

Good to see Simon back tonight (and 3rd too), welcome back Simon.

Have loaded the hands for the main group, loaded the Improvers results and submitted both groups to the EBU, nice and easy tonight.

Planning to work at home tomorrow in comfort then off to see Alex Horne and the Horne Section in Camberley Theatre tomorrow night with Vee

20th February 2018


Took the afternoon off today as not feeling too bright but rested for the afternoon and went to Badminton to sweat out my cold!

Between my friend and myself, the Badminton website now has the correct names and email contacts and all working again - a simple site but it only needs to be a place where others can see us and contact us

I lost more than I won tonight but played well (at the start) and all games were above 16-21 so nice and hard games and I am shattered now, hope it will make me feel better tomorrow!

Hosting the Improvers tomorrow with Vee (though it may be one or the other of us depending how we feel)

19th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

My team played an away match tonight too in the BBL - but unfortunately lost 7-13, bad luck team but still, only lost 3 matches all season

Although I have marked the session red, we still got master points and we declared well - we had some good Ops that made the right call against us though and couldn't do much about it (including a psych against us which is allowed but leaves a bad taste)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 4:   I made an extra trick here by ducking the first  and then Q played trick 2 set-up an extra for me - taking the finesse near the end to just 2 s overall

Hand 6:   Well played partner, a helpful lead and careful play here

Hand 9:   Well bid Ops, NT beats s

Hand 12: I should have lead my own suit here and then we take the contract off, sorry partner

Hand 15: Ops looked for a slam and backed off (rightly so) but now too high and we got the defence right

Hand 16: Not the easiest contract but I got the right (though the deeper finesse would have got me 11 tricks

Hand 17: Ops made a good lead but didn't follow it up, I then had time to set up my tricks

Hand 21: Well bid Ops, we couldn't do much more here but we needed to take the trump out to make another but still not a great score then

Hand 23: Ops discarded 2 s as I played s so I made an extra trick with my own s

Playing badminton tomorrow

18th February 2018

Surrey Mens Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in the Surrey Mens Pairs event

I remembered to take the boards with me today, have taken the home too to return tomorrow night.

We had a good start but a bad patch, not the best score but a few boards could easily have been better and it wouldn't have taken much to move up to the top 3, close - sorry for my silly errors partner

Good to see our other local pair, Colin & David, doing well (4th), well done both

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:     I should have bid 6 here, it says it doesn't make but we are never getting a lead so they go on the AK

Hand 3:     Hard to reach game here but partner did very well to make 11 tricks and caught the singleton K too!

Hand 4:     Massive blunder here, we competed too far, I should double and let them go down in 3

Hand 5:     We didn't get this right, need to attack the s but not easy to see how....

Hand 9:     Unlucky to get doubled here

Hand 10:   Completing the bad round here - I should pass 2, sorry partner

Hand 13:   Ops didn't take the trumps out so we both ruffed

Hand 18:   Odd double here but I think they expected us to bid 3NT - I felt they would escape if I re-doubled but one lucky pair did - not bad though

Hand 19:   Well played partner, setting up the s and Ops not taking A and 9 tricks made!

Hand 22:   So lucky not to get a  switch

Hand 25:   As I had one point, I felt this would be a good sacrifice and it was close, but not quite - sorry partner

Playing at CBC tomorrow and the team I play for in the BBL has an away match (fingers crossed)

17th February 2018


Watched some of the Winter Olympics today (was great seeing a Gold and Bronze in the Womens' Skeleton for team GB!!!!)

The family buying our house came over for a few hours this afternoon and Vee made Samosas for us all - they were a lovely family!

Friends round tonight for Poker and Take Away, we play 2 tournaments and I won both, makes a change but nice!!!  Vee was 3rd both times too

Surrey Men's Pairs tomorrow

16th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session (Also a Beryl Doughty Round but we are not part of it)

My best session of the week, thanks Partner!!!  Had I not made a mess of 2 of the last 4 hands we would have won too, but still, a good score.

Really good to see 8 tables tonight, just what we asked for!!! A pair from the Improvers and 3 Farnham pairs gave us a boost, thanks all!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:    I would have done better to double 5 here but couldn't be sure and I felt game was on, sorry partner

Hand 7:    Partner played brilliantly here to make an un-makable contract!

Hand 9:    We pushed as far as we could and also got the defence right here

Hand 12:  We got this right too (although we can make 3NT for a better score but it didn't look on from the bidding.  Partner made a great  switch for me to eliminate dummy's trumps and allow us to make the other

Hand 13:  We pushed as far as we could here and then defended well, nice to make my small trump here, good lead partner!

Hand 15:  I bid blackwood here looking for a slam and partner didn't like it and passed.  I think it is always there but needed careful play and not all made it

Hand 16:  The s were friendly here so got my s away

Our Buyers coming tomorrow then Poker with friends in the evening

16th February 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

Some odd errors today and some work needed on our defence overall.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Ops must bid on after my overcall or partners raise to 2, we are lucky here

Hand 7:   I need to switch to a trick 2 here to hold Ops to 11 tricks

Hand 8:   Well bid Ops!

Hand 9:   Partner played well here to make this!

Hand 10: This could have been a bit better if the finesse was taken but perhaps my suits were not good enough to bid a 2 suiter

Hand 14: We missed the slam here but so did most and I didn't get a  lead so made all 13 tricks

Hand 15: Well bid Ops!

Hand 16: I should leave Ops in 3 here, sorry partner

Hand 18: Well done partner, no  ruffs helped make this but played well

Hand 20: Well bid Ops, we needed a  switch to hold them to 8 tricks but even that would have been a good score or them

Hand 24: We defended this one well and held it to 11 tricks

Playing again after dinner at YHBC

15th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

After last night, I really needed a solid performance tonight and I was still below par really but we were in the points (just) and some good things!

I also noticed the scores were left as Teams at the end and was able to change it quickly so people could still see the actual results before they left, helped with Margaret and Jane at the end so Val wasn't left on her own.

We were either top or bottom on most hands tonight......!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:  We pushed Ops too far and then got the defence right to enable partner to make both her s

Hand 4: We were set to take this 2 off but I forgot to play the A, sorry partner

Hand 6: We need a lead here.....

Hand 7:  No lead or switch so 8 tricks are there

Hand 9: Ops bid and made what they should and get a good score for it!

Hand 11:  Ops sacrificed here and I was mean and doubled, sorry Ops

Hand 13:  Ops missed the slam here

Hand 14:  We had a misunderstanding here that got us into the correct contract (I then made an overtrick as no lead) - partner bid Gerber and I jumped to 6 (I don't use Gerber!!!), after 6, I bid 6NT

Hand 15:  I made an extra trick here by getting the  right (playing up to the Q)

Hand 16: I need to lead a here, the  let them throw a to make 10 tricks, sorry partner

Hand 17:  We missed the slam here but very hard to find unless pushed I think - not all made 12 though and some let Ops sacrifice (or make!!!) in 4

Hand 18: We couldn't win here, Ops bid to 3 which is their contract, though it would have been a little better to leave them there!

Hand 19: I opened strong here but we went for the wrong slam - sorry partner, my fault here

Hand 21:  Partner opened 1NT and I had a terrible hand so used stayman, Ops competed and we end up in 2 - partner played perfectly to make 10 tricks and a joint top

Playing twice again tomorrow

14th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

It's Valentines Day today so both Vee and I naturally choose to come to Bridge!!!

Val & Vee hosted the Improvers and results are HERE  Well done Chris & Carole, another great score!!!

Our session was not at our best........sad

We opened a bottle of bubbly when home to have a small Valentines celebration (I am not a big fan of commercial days but I am a fan of Vee!)

The Highs and Lows:

Not tonight!!!!  Both miserable and even tried to make fun of it but my mood wasn't good enough, will be better next time and we both will forget all about tonight, love will be restored Friday partner...!!!

Playing at CBC tomorrow

13h February 2018


Another hectic day at work today and pressure on regarding new forecasts, late night last night tidying up the Teams scores (not just me, a lot of work goes into the running of our clubs.....)

Taking on the Badminton website too now so our friend comes over to hand it over (Vee was delighted to find out I am taking on more work!!!)

Badminton was good again but my arm started hurting again but pushed through it - Martin (my friend with the web skills) played well considering he hasn't played for 7 years and really enjoyed it though will suffer tomorrow!

Vee was an IT guru tonight too and helped Margaret get her laptop working again, well done Vee!

Valentines day tomorrow and I have mine lined up, see you tomorrow Margaret!!!

12th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in the Florence Lewis Crockery Cup (Teams) - also a qualifier for the Committee Cup (Berks Final) for those who have not tried to qualify before.

We had a solid evening and our Team Mates did too (both had a few wobbles) and a good score but 4th.

Well done to Margaret, David, Margaret & Tricia for winning the club cup!!!  Congratulations to the 3 valid teams qualifying for the Final too (I have e-mailed them all and the organiser of the event to establish if any wish to enter the Final).

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 11:  We are in a reasonable contract as a sacrifice to 4, team mates had 4 bid and made against them (not sure it should make but it is tough defence)

Hand 15:  I open this 4, turns out to be ok as most are in a part score

Hand 16:  Ops stay in a part score, it is teams and our team mates go to game but 1 off, I think they should be in game in teams to be honest

Hand 18:  Ops go to the wrong game and I double, team mates make 3NT

Hand 19:  This was a tight double but we defended well and our team mates defeat the Ops game too

Hand 26:  We missed the slam here.  I jumped straight to game (which is kind of a shut out) but I am only showing a 7 loser hand.  I think we should go on here but perhaps it is better if I bid 3

Hand 29:  I open strong here and start to get carried away but back out just in time and make game - team mates hold a part score to 9 tricks

Badminton tomorrow night.

11th February 2018

Richmond Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in Richmond's Blue Pointed Swiss Pairs

Vee said he would do the shopping this morning so I could have a soak in the bath and relax before Bridge, he's amazing really!

Colin & David did well finishing in the top 20, well done both!

As we only won 2 matches and both played below par today (sorry for my errors partner), will just give some of highlights rather than all the tops and bottoms!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 5:    A simple 1, 2 from me here and we did well by simply bidding right and playing solidly. 

Hand 6:     Ops missed the optimum slams and we took our tricks before they got going with the s

Hand 27:   Ambitious Ops here, slam missing 2 Aces and we took them at the start to be safe

Hand 37:   I made a weak jump overcall in s and Ops bid 2 and they stopped there, they have a slam on so we did well, if they double or cue they will get somewhere higher

Hand 39:   Standard bidding and play again was good enough to earn a good score here

Playing in a one off Teams event at CBC tomorrow (for a Club Cup and doubling up as a qualifier for a Berks Final)

10th February 2018

House & Party:

Saw the house together today and stayed for 1.5 hours!!!  Still really liked it and had a good chat with the vendor and swapped numbers too.

Pasta for lunch then Vee had a power nap!  I created a new YHBC page under competitions to show a summary of all live competitions.

Picked a friend up and then went to Basingstoke in the evening to a friends house for his birthday - lots of people and drinks and nibbles (as well as a weird chat about ninja squirrels with gene mutations to help cull dear in Richmond Park - how many times have we had that conversation!!!!)

Swiss Pairs in Richmond tomorrow

9th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

It has been a hectic week this week and 2 sessions today was pushing it, not feeling it at all to start tonight (and I set up most of the chairs and tables too).

Only 5.5 tables tonight, we have got to get more players coming to get more meaningful results - it is such a good session, am sure people would enjoy it once they get there, come on, give it a go!

After a slow start though, we picked up a bit and played the hands in order so you can see from our card what I mean!

We have now moved up to 3rd in the Friday Ladder (again, after a slow and bumpy start), very tight too - see HERE

I added a hotspot on my phone tonight to load the results from the club (P2P too), never done it before but it is surprisingly simple, thanks John for showing me!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 9:   Ops open strong, partner bids (for the lead only really) - I felt a sacrifice was ok here but not so - that being said, partner could have trapped the West trumps but not all of them, I think it was possible to get away for 500 though but it was tight and my error really.

Hand 10:   Partner, having no controls, passed my blackwood bid - I was actually aiming for 6, good judgement partner and well played too - fortunate Ops didn't find the switch

Hand 14:   A wild hand here, I raised partner to game and Ops doubled (not unreasonable to be honest but unlucky all the cards are right for us).  Partner gave a away in the end but actually, could have made 12 here.....!

Hand 15:   Well played partner, lucky not to be forced in s or s though, Ops kept pushing Ss when they got in, a lead and follow up and a switch and partner is in real trouble

Hand 24:   Unlucky Ops, good lead from partner did no damage and singleton K wins (as I feel it should really)

We have been invited to see the house tomorrow (as the vendor knew we hadn't seen it together) - birthday drinks for another friend in the evening

9th February 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

We had a terrible start and nothing went our way but it picked up and finished on an average score.

Being in the Master Points now puts partner 2nd on the Master Point race this year too - see HERE

So pleased to see Val and Michael top today, so well deserved and I know Val has been feeling low recently about her game and seeing her top today (with a great score too) has made my day, well done both!

We enjoyed the session in the end but I had the feeling that partner wasn't playing the same game as me sometimes, have promised to be kind here though so will no more (other than, support my s and bid 2 when the system dictates it....!!!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Partner commented that I played this very well, actually, I should have left the A in dummy and put East in for 1 more trick!!!

Hand 5:   Superb defending here, we timed this perfectly so I could take the last trump out and cross to partner's now winning s

Hand 8:   I seem to over-value my hands a lot at present, here it is again, sorry partner - I should pass 4

Hand 10:   I think I played this one well, when East didn't ruff the 3rd , I know where the K is

Hand 12:   Partner needs to keep playing the s and then lose a to gain entry

Hand 16:   I should bid 2 here, 2NT (again!!!!) over-valued my hand and doesn't show 5 s, sorry partner

Hand 18:   A lousy suit but 6 of them, I think I should bid here as very little defensive values

Hand 20:   Ops didn't attack s until too late, I am a lucky player at times!

Hand 24:   Well played partner!!!  Singleton K was allowed to win for the 10th trick but played well to make 9 too anyway

Playing again after dinner at YHBC.....

8th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in second of the CBC Thursday Championships

Slight delay in posting as I picked up the Improvers travellers from YHBC and scored and posted results as soon as home from CBC tonight.  I was also Scorer at CBC so left a little late and needed to get Milk on my way home!

More pairs tonight (they turn out for the Championships and we also had 4 Ascot pairs - some are members at CBC too and one is another partner of mine, he won tonight, well done Chris*2!!!)

I was not thinking clearly at all tonight, lots of errors and getting bids the wrong way round, really odd tonight and apologies to partner and Ops (as some worked in our favour!)

An above average score in the end (though not as good as we need as a pair) but consistent and we running 4th after 2 events with 7% between top 5.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   I opened a weak 2 here with no honours, not a good move, sorry partner.  I actually played it well but still a low score!

Hand 5:    Ops could have ducked the first 2 s to save the contract but it was a great lead and I unblocked for partner too

Hand 6:     Partner made a brilliant lead but then thought I wanted a , we need to switch to a !

Hand 15:    I raised to LTC here and partner played brilliantly to hold it to one off, good sacrifice against Ops 5s

Hand 19:   I jumped here to show weakness but partner (correctly) thought I was strong, I kept making the wrong bid tonight.  Partner doubled as assumed we had the balance of the points, sorry partner

Hand 20:    Only 3 NS pairs playing here, amazing!  If only Ops had bid again and we find the slam!

Hand 23:    Only 3 slams bid here, partner was the only player to make it too.  Great play dropping the Q.  After partner opens and jumps in s (we play 5 card majors), I am interested and so look and get the right answer - not an easy play though but partner was great here!

Hand 24:    Huge apologies all round here.  Partner bid 1NT on his 2nd bid and for some reason, I thought he was showing me an opening hand - crazy, don't know what was wrong with me tonight.  I then raise to game and it's an impossible contract.  Lucky that his Q wasn't covered and so all the s roll in, brilliant play partner, sorry for my idiocy.

Playing twice tomorrow.

7th February 2018

Sylvia Rose Teams (Farnham):

Day off today (though I ended up working all morning!!!!  Lots of chores to do too so went to Alan Browns, got my car cleaned, went to the Vets, got new Badminton shoes and shorts and T-Shirts and dealt with washing and cleaning at home as well as dealing with the Solicitors for our house sale!

I have also been emailing our Improvers group at YHBC and seems the low attendance is almost entirely due to ill health, almost all are better now am glad to report so attendance should be on the up now!  We also need to increase numbers for the YHBC Friday sessions, some don't or can't come out at night now and I wonder if we can encourage lift shares to help this?  Friday night is a lovely session, competitive but friendly, would be improved with 8-10 tables though......

Bridge is the best game and best way to spend your time (in my opinion) but it needs Bridge players to help, organise, improve and attend to continue.......

Playing with a regular partner in the first round of the Sylvia Rose Teams Final series at Farnham.  The results are hand scored so the info is a table - direct link in purple above (from Farnham's results page) - hands are within the results file and can be downloaded or viewed there too.

We are top of our section going into the Finals going into the Finals but now 2nd.........

We won the first half by 8 Imps but lost the second by 20 to lose by 12 (7-13 in VPs).

Key Hands:

Hand 1:     Our team mates bid the slam, our Ops didn't (+11)

Hand 4:     Ops defend well against me and I go off in game, Ops make game in a part score against team mates (-7)

Hand 6:     I go off in a slim game, team mates go off in a part score (-6)

Hand 10:   Partner makes the slam I put him, team mates hold Ops to game! (+13)

Hand 12:   Ops defend well against me again and team mates have game make against them

Hand 15:   I push too far and go off in 5, Ops against team mates stay in 4 making (-6)

Hand 16:   I make 5x and team mates go off 200 (+8)

Hand 18:   Partner goes off in 3NT, they make it against team mates - partner needs to play a H to make, unlucky (-13)

Val hosted the Improvers whilst I was at Farnham and Vee has to stay in Slough this week (is there a worse fate?!!!!!)  I scored and loaded results HERE on Thursday night and e-mailed all who played to advise.

Playing in the second round of the CBC Thursday Championship tomorrow.

6th February 2018


A calmer day at work after a busy morning and working at home tomorrow too as have other bits and pieces to sort out as well as paid work

A few YHBC e-mails and CBC committee work as well as organising the May Swiss Pairs event (book in if you haven't already, online entry HERE)

While at Badminton, Vee asks a big favour as he has to be in Slough the rest of the week - this means we need cover for the Improvers so I e-mail out a plea and answered immediately, thanks so much Val, Marjie and Alan!!!

It also means I have to cook for myself and our 2 lodgers for the rest of the week!!!!

Badminton was really good tonight, my friend Dave won 10/10 games and I won 7/9 (lost twice to Dave!!!) - we had a few comments too and I have a killer smash near the net that I jump for and it thunders, did this 4 times tonight and there was a match on the other 2 courts and they stopped play the first time I did it, felt so embarrassed!!!

Sylvia Rose match at Farnham tomorrow

5th February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A busy day at work today but home on time and a relaxed couple of hours before Bridge.  Not much else today other then a few solicitor e-mails but just a waiting game now.

I helped Val get the Newsletter put together and loaded it to the site too - hope people read it as it is Val's first one (well done Val!)

We had a steady night tonight but still a few things slipped us by and I made a few wrong assumptions.  More right than wrong though and a good defending night.

Writing this as I munch on home made Scones (thanks Margaret!!!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:     I turned a good score into a bad score here, trick 2 I took the  finesse and lost to the Q, my plan was to throw a  on the 3rd if it works, drat

Hand 5:     Ops missed the fit and gave us a we didn't have to take

Hand 7:     I made a non-offending lead here and everything else just seemed to go wrong for declarer as made 2 s, 2s and a

Hand 10:    We pushed Ops here (it is 20-20 and we are both competitive pairs) - I made a risky double but it was right

Hand 13:    Solid defending here holds declarer to 7 tricks which turns out to be good for us

Hand 15:    Partner got the s wrong with no real clues, unlucky

Hand 16:    I thought I was making a good sacrifice here but went off 1 too many, sorry partner

Hand 19:    I got the s right here and one of the s goes away for the extra trick - I also got the right by playing the Q and watching East, with no reaction at all play for the drop, it works!

Hand 21:    I scraped through here and got the s right under pressure from losing the first 5 tricks

Hand 22:   Ops made the right bid (I think) but unlucky that it doesn't make.

Hand 24:   We defended well here putting pressure on declarer with the s and my 4 s didn't help them either

Hand 25:   I feel my double made declarer place me with the K and so didn't drop partners singleton K - I think it is right to finesse it anyway though but was please with our defence, again, adding pressure with the s to shorten declarers trumps

Badminton tomorrow night.

4th February 2018

Home time:

Another late breakfast but a light bite.  Then check out and have coffee in the bar as we wait for the others.

On to "Honest Burger" for brunch, lovely chips!!!  Then back to Kings Cross and on to Waterloo, amazed that our friends don't know where to go and how to use the Tube, they just follow us!!!

We miss the train by a few minutes but not in a rush so wonder around Waterloo for a bit and our friends buy a few bits then a 50 minute train home where our lodger meets us and takes us home, cats very pleased to see us and Nemo is draped on my legs as I write this!!!

Shopping online today to be picked up tomorrow night - washing is all on so just relaxing for the rest of today/tonight.

Playing at CBC tomorrow.

3rd February 2018

Birthday Celebrations:


Link to Escape Room


Link to Be At One


Link to Evening Meal


A late breakfast this morning then relax until lunch time when our friends arrive and a few drinks at the hotel then off for pizza for lunch

The Escape Room is near Kings Cross so not far to go and we split into 2 teams (boys Vs girls)

We have an hour to escape and save the world !!!!  It’s the hardest level too but we get going and make steady progress and get into the second part fairly quickly then stumble a little and we think we hear the girls celebrating - oh no!!!!

We carry on and between the 5 of us we work well as a team and we manage to save the world with 1 minute 13 seconds to spare!

As we get out the guy tells us only 20% make it and we had little help too so we feel better, then we see no sign of the girls!!!   We beat them by 3 minutes and they had more help too!!!!

The birthday boy was very pleased (his wife was on the girls team!!!)

Off to "Be at One" next for lots of cocktails - 2 for 1 deal so I had 2 "Killing Monicas" then 2 Buenot's - yum!

Inamo for the evening meal after getting changed at hotel and it was a great dining experience, the table was interactive so you could play games against each other and draw on the table (using a pointer not actually drawing on the table!!!) - was really good.  The waiter was an iPad too, so anything we wanted, anytime we wanted it we just chose and clicked!  Very modern!!!

Then a terrible bar after, 1 drink and we left quickly and went to O'Neils until 1am drinking Guinness (for me!).  Feeling our age by the end and ready for bed!

2nd February 2018

Night Out:

Our friends are all starting to catch us up in turning 40 !  We are in London this weekend for 2 of them and staying near Kings Cross 

Vee and I decide to come down the night before and have a lovely meal in Soho and a few drinks (partly our own celebrations!!!)

Tomorrow the rest will join us and we have lunch and dinner and an Escape Room planned!

My NGS has caught up now, going to bed a Queen and will wake up a King!!!

2nd February 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Our increased offer on the Ash Vale house (view HERE) has been accepted and the other interested buyer is disappointed but has not increased their offer!!!  It is a stretch and above £500k is a higher cost for the additional £15k due to Stamp Duty charges but, we can do it and are now pleased (again!!!).

We are so relieved now this has been agreed and now the joy of paperwork and dealing with Lawyers.

Bridge was better today too and a few issues but generally good!  With the result to come in from Wednesday and today, I should wake up as a King on the NGS again (not been a King since 27th Jan 2017!!!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:     This seemed fairly straight forward to make but I now see the s were the issue - bit lucky perhaps.

Hand 2:     I messed up here, could take the deep finesse or get the  right to make this, sorry partner

Hand 3:     Good double partner!  We found the right defence too with the  through to get the ruffing going

Hand 4:    10 tricks is not easy here but is the optimum and partner found the right play, well done!  The  finesse was the only way but still had to do it!

Hand 6:     I was bold with my raise but maintain that game is here with a complete cross ruff (matrix agrees with me) - 9 s and a or a

Hand 10:   I played this one well I think.....!

Hand 11:   Partner played this one very well too!

Hand 12:   This one too, sorry Ops, lead needed to defeat it

Hand 13:   Unlucky Ops, nobody else doubled, perfectly reasonable contract

Hand 15:   We should be in 3NT here, I bid 3 to fish for s from partner but I was raised to 4s!!!  No alternative now but to bid 4 but actually, 4 makes, drat again!

Hand 19:   We are in the right contract here making what I should (cross ruffed the lot)

Hand 22:   If I had only played the 7 on the first round......!  I am never taking that line in reality though, matrix says North can make it but I cannot, sorry partner - reasonable bid (though that is not what I said at the time!!!!)

Off to London tonight and back Sunday, so brief entries over the weekend (if any!) - 2 friends 40th Birthday's....

1st February 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Back to work today and loads caught up on but now up to date (helps to do work when I am supposed to be on leave!).

Mortgage applied for tonight and Vee and our lodgers saw the house we have offered on (would have been awful if they didn't like it now the offer is in!!!!)

They all loved it but unfortunately were told while they were there that the 1 other viewing they had offered £10k more than us (annoying as they had a budget of £750k and were seeing 2 others at that price!).  We have increased our offer to £515k but that is our limit, if they raise again we have lost out.  I (we) are so disappointed but will see in the morning.

I played poorly tonight too, partner asked if the house was getting to me, perhaps it was (is), sorry partner.

We had some good scores and hand 8 tonight needs a look......!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:     We defended well and Ops didn't like NT after my  bid (a cheeky bid really but you know me by now!)

Hand 6:     I opened 2NT here with a singleton Ace (it is on our system card) and it worked well here though Ops crashed there A and K as waited for the second round to play the A after the K was played, lucky.

Hand 8:     Well, not a dark green or red but what a hand (and it was my hand)!!!  Ops open 1 and passed to me, I bid 6.  My bid is 4NT (purely Ace asking but I asked partner and she said she wouldn't be sure what it was).  Not something many have an agreement on really but 4NT works perfectly here to find the cold 7NT - nobody did but one pair found 7!

Hand 9:     Ops stopped in the right spot, GRRRRRRR, at least it was Val and I don't mind giving a top to her if I have to

Hand 11:    I raised immediately to game but Ops bid 5 - partner could have doubled but bid 5 over 5 instead (actually not unreasonable but didn't work here)

Hand 12:    Ops bid my suit, I tried to push them up but got doubled for penalties, I should actually have made on the play we had though as I lost count of the trumps and just had to take the last one out, drat!

Hand 14:   Ops bid too high after I push and I was mean and doubled - we took an extra trick with ruffling too

Hand 17:   I upgraded my hand here when partner showed good shape - it worked but if Ops play a early partner has a lot of problems as she needs to take them at the end (as she did!)

Hand 20:   Defending well here, though Ops didn't have to let partner win her 3rd

Hand 22:   I should only have bid 3 here, sorry partner

Hand 24:   Ops made a bad lead (in my opinion) that worked for them, any other lead and partner makes 12 or 13 tricks!

Playing at CBC tomorrow then off to London for the weekend (2 friends 40th Birthdays!)

31st January 2018

Benzimra (Pairs):

A day off today to view houses with the kind offer of help and company from Margaret (thanks Margaret!).

We had a nice day today and was so much better to have company and a second opinion on the viewings, we both agreed on each house too!

A tough schedule of viewings:


Time Link to Property Comments
10:00 Yateley Lovely house and ideal but sold this morning just after I left!
11:00 Aldershot (1) This is a BIG NO!!!
11:45 Aldershot (2) Hard to imagine how anyone can show their house in this condition, dirty, smelly and the layout didn't work for us either
13:00 Sandhurst (1) Drive wasn't great for my driving skills and rooms a little small
13:20 Sandhurst (2) Much better than the first but sloping floors and no downstairs cloakroom though the garage could be converted
13:40 Sandhurst (3) Lovely house here, really really liked it and no work to be done, practially perfect
14:00 Sandhurst (4) Nice but not right for us, can't see why we need 2 kitchens in the main house
15:00 Ash Vale Stunning, loved it from yesterday when I put the viewing request in and this IS our house!


When home I asked Vee to phone Margaret for her view as I wanted to offer, he said yes and was convinced (though I have arranged for him to view tomorrow on his way home from work!) - I offered and 5 minutes later she had cancelled 5 of the viewings lined up and accepted our offer (though one is still coming tomorrow to view) - formal confirmation tomorrow but we think we have now bought a house in Ash Vale!!!

Bridge now.........:

Vee hosted the Improvers, only 2.5 tables and some freaky scores!!!

This is a one of event at Farnham for the club championship.

Despite the last round where we both fell apart (one after the other!), our performance overall was just good enough to win the title!  Nick played out of skin tonight (generally!) and I was steady too, enjoyed it.

Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Partners opens 2 and then shows 8 playing tricks in s, I leap to 4NT and 6 found and made - not that many found it.  At our table, they queried if this could be opened 2 and the answer I think is actually no (need 5 controls and only 4 here) but it is a clasic example of a hand that doesn't fit with the new rules, this IS a strong hand!

Hand 3:   It is the last round and partner had a meltdown here

Hand 4:   Anything you can do partner!!!! This was my turn to go wrong!!!

Hand 8:   Partner didn't lead the long here - if he had, 11 tricks is made, we held it to 10!

Hand 9:   So lucky here, we bid up to 5 and Ops then bid 6 which I doubled.  Not a good double but it worked and us left in 5 could be tricky too!

Hand 14:   Slight over bidding by Ops here and we got the defence right with partner making the vital  switch

Hand 18:   Unlucky Ops, bidding 1NT with 2 doubletons didn't pay off here, those that opened 1 find the better contract.  We didn't take 2 tricks but.....

Hand 23:   Great play partner, got the away for the 11th trick!

Hand 25:   Poor play by me again here, I got the wrong

I have a lot of House paperwork to do and a fair amount of CBC admin but it may have to wait until tomorrow as I have a headache and am tired now, a long day but worthwhile!

The P2P has not yet been submitted for tonight but I will also be back to a King on the NGS tomorrow if it is submitted tonight!

Playing at CBC tomorrow.

30th January 2018

Surrey League:

Our second match of the season against a Farnham based team.

A busy day off (with work laptop on too!) - Camberley admin, data protection rules to prepare for (starts in May) and house hunting (all I talk about now, more than Bridge even!!!)

Saw a house in Mytchett this afternoon and went for a coffee with Dorothy beforehand, Vee met me there too then we headed off - it was not nice though (the House, not Dorothy, she was a delight!).   Long drive but narrow and 4th bedroom should have been the lounge, nothing felt right about it at all!

Home then and Vee made mac n cheese in 30 minutes so I could eat before the match!

I meet the team at Alan's house at 6:30pm (just, traffic was terrible!!!) and drive us all to Farnham.  A lovely house and lovely people, I have a lot of time for them (especially Erica).

First Half:

Hand 5:    We defended this well and partner played back the  for my ruff to take 4 off, our team mates made their game:  +12

Hand 6:   Partner made a good bad but got ahead of herself and played a low  to ruff but before winning the 2nd !!!  Bad luck, team mates also went off in their contract:  -10

Hand 7:   I took a chance here, Ops open 1 and I have an opening hand with 5 s to the A and 6 s to AKJ - I bid straight to 4 and partner shows up with 5 points but 4 s, I am so lucky!!!  I make my game and team mates sacrifice of 300 pays off:  +8

Hand 9:   Superb defending here takes 2 off 1, team mates bring back 300 too!!!:  +8

Hand 10: Ops had 9 trumps and finessed the Q which my doubleton won, team mates played for the drop and so made the slam:  +17

We find ourselves 38 Imps up at half time but both teams scored and it could still swing back.  They put on a magnificent spread (quiches, sausage rolls, cake and chocolates with Tea or Coffee)

Second Half:

Hand 13:  Ops missed game, team mates bid theirs:  +10

Hand 14:  I open 1NT (11 with 5s) and Ops overcall a natural 2.  Partner bids 4NT (I thought this was quantitative, it wasn't!!!) - I think for ages about what my hand is now worth and then bid 6NT, it is a lay down.  Team mates didn't have a 1NT open and bid freely in s which Ops then outbid to make 11 tricks in s:  +11

Hand 19: Partner has a nice hand and jumps in a 2nd suit, I don't have much in those but I have an opening hand too so bid 3NT making 10 tricks, team mates Ops didn't bid game:  +10

Hand 20: Ops didn't find game with my double, team mates bid game:  +10

Hand 21: We defend well again beating Ops game, team mates make game:  +12

Hand 23: Partner opens 1NT and Ops overcall 2, I double and partner passes!!!!  I am not pleased but we take it off 1, team mates bring home 200 too!!!:  +9

65-0 in the second half, this equates to +103 Imps converting to 20-0 - we all felt a little embarrassed to win by such a margin against such a nice team.

Playing at Farnham in the club champions one off event tomorrow night after viewing 8 more houses!!!!  Margaret has kindly offered to come with me tomorrow for company, support and advice as I have so many to see, thanks partner!

29th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A busy morning today and then everything went mad with calls and e-mails etc so took the afternoon off to get everything sorted (off tomorrow and Wednesday to view houses too so an extra hour or 2 won't hurt).

We had a good night tonight but both made a few slips, partner was very hard on herself but honestly, she is too critical and I think she played and bid exceptionally well with just a couple of slips (same as me).  Then again, I am very hard on myself too!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:    I made a mess of this against tough defence - I tried o set-up the s but better setting up my own hand

Hand 4:    Ops didn't bid game but not an easy hand here when they are void in each others suits

Hand 8:    Ops transferred but it was passed, unfortunate but good luck for us - it raised a good point about the laws though, Ops didn't inform us of the error before we lead and they are obliged to do so.  It didn't damage us here though.

Hand 9:    Ops bid s so I had to keep quiet.  I cannot stay quiet when they are signing off at the 2 level though so I bid 2 and partner supports me, 2 off was a good score though

Hand 11:  Partner was cross with me for not supporting the first suit - I have an aversion to being in a minor but this was actually 6!!!  Fortunately, nobody bid the slam and s beats s

Hand 12:  Ops sacrificed at a low level but I am feeling mean tonight and double, we only have a part score on so this works

Hand 15:  After a competitive auction, Ops bid 5 over 5 - I don't like to compete there so double for a good score

Hand 18:  I had a huge hand but Ops open light in front of me, I bid strongly and pushed but ended up doubling the Ops for a good score (4 doesn't seem to make fortunately)

Hand 21:    Odd here, we defended well and held the Ops to 9 tricks when they can make 10 (dropping the singleton K) yet most only made 8 tricks, not fair!

Hand 23:  Some were too ambitious here, we stayed at the right level and scored well for doing it (though I did miss a trick as started the  the wrong way)

House hunting again tomorrow then a league match (Surrey) in Farnham in the evening.

28th January 2018

Surrey Mixed Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in Surrey's Mixed Pairs

A few issues for some with flu and health issues and so some pairs dropped out and some arrived without booking!  All worked in the end though and we started only a few minutes late (One of my friends got the time wrong though and so apologised and went home again).

We had a good start and most things just worked, we finish at the break in 2nd place and after the next round in the second half we are top!!!

Unfortunately, it all went wrong after that until the last 2 tables - dropped down to 47% but picked back up to 52% in the end, still a fair score in this company and we enjoyed (well, enjoyed the first half!!!).

We met Vee at Nando's after the Bridge event and Margaret had her first experience there, thought it was a bit "young"!!!!  Enjoyed though!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   We were pushed too far, even doubling them in 4 would not have been a good score (though better!!!)

Hand 3:   We gave a trick away here by not taking the trumps out

Hand 7:   I messed up here, should have opened 1 and then got carried away and bid too high - compounded by messing up the play too, disaster!

Hand 14:   A cheeky overcall by partner here and she played it beautifully!!!

Hand 15:   Not many of us in game and I was lucky enough to not get a low  lead!

Hand 16:   Ops doubled for takeout and it was left in (thoughtfully) - a lead is called for and without it, partnered played solidly to make this!

Hand 17:   We missed the grand (relying on a finesse that worked!) but did bid the right small slam.

Hand 18:   Ops didn't finesse my KJ

Hand 19:   Ops didn't try the  finesse the 2nd time, lucky us!

Hand 21:   We bid here (I doubled 1) and so they couldn't play in their ideal contract of 1NT

Hand 22:   Hard to find game but Ops did, well done Ops!

Hand 24:   We were both squeezed and Ops played well (very well)

Hand 25:  Ops didn't try the  finesse as too risky, cannot blame them as if it was wrong they are 4 off!

Hand 27:   Good bidding by Ops, We make our 3NT, then the 5 but they bid on and I couldn't be sure about 5NT, well done Ops

Hand 29:   I was too pushy again here and ended up playing in a contract the Ops can make!!!

Hand 30:   We should be in 4 here, partner had 3 card support for me......

Hand 33:   Ops missed game here with our interference

Hand 35:   3NT is a better contract but Ops defended well, others have mad 4

Hand 39:   We missed a trick here but not everyone found game - well done Ops

Scoring and playing tomorrow at CBC

27th January 2018

Barn Dance:

Saw the houses below and both over budget but could offer £515k on either, our preference was the Camberley house below but I am still not sure we want to spend ALL of our money.


Link to Camberley House


Link to Frimley House


Saw our friend John this afternoon too and dropped off the latest EBU magazine and had a chat (and sorted out laptop issues for him too!)

Barn Dance at 8pm and we really got involved, missed 2 dances but did the rest and won a raffle prize too - very energetic and both needed a shower when we got home!

Was great to see all my old friends and they all remembered my Dad too (he used to be the league chairman and started the barn dance with my Mum and me!) - lovely evening, Vee was the woman throughout but he didn't mind!

Playing in the Surrey Mixed Pairs tomorrow with a meal after

26th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

My normal monthly partner is not well tonight and have wished him well and hope he gets better soon.  He didn't sound well at all so am sending out positive thoughts.

It was a tight finish but 2 major blunders (1 each) cost us tonight, still 60% is a good score and makes 2 second place for me today.  The stats are interesting, my declarer play got us 43% and the rest above 70%, though some of my poor scores were our bidding!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:    Partner pulled out the wrong bid and we ended up in the wrong contract, we would have been in 4 (assume plus 1) for a 2nd top

Hand 2:   This was actually 3 (not 3) but score the same and good defending here but declarer could have played AK to be only 1 off.

Hand 7:   Superb play partner!

Hand 8:   We are the only pair in game, goof time to upgrade your hand here partner!

Hand 9:    Ops didn't bid game and I had to restrain myself from bidding and pushing them there

Hand 11:  Great play again here partner though a trump lead makes it very difficult

Hand 14:  Aggghhhhhhhhhhh!!!!  I got greedy here and didn't think there would be only 1 in West, I should have simply played for my 10 tricks here!  Partner paused in the bidding too and worked out correctly that my bid was not forcing, sorry sad

Hand 15:  We defended this very well here and made the most of our trumps.

Hand 20:  Poor bid by me here compounded by terrible play, I should simply cross ruff the hand!

Hand 21:  Ops sacrificed here but we actually don't make our 5

Hand 22:  Good defending again here

Hand 24:  Ops in the right contract though I feel we should have bid 2 to push them up  

House hunting again tomorrow then a barn dance in the evening with my Badminton league.

26th January 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A poor start today and I started getting cross with partner and she had to tell me to stop (which I did!!!), sorry partner.

A lot more on the house today too (becoming a life take-over now!!!) - we have done all the legal stuff and so have our buyers, just need to find a house now!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Sometimes it is good to open light, sometimes not - guess which this was is!

Hand 2:    Ops set up my s for me here giving an extra trick

Hand 8:    I played well here to set-up a ruffing finesse with the s but even without that, 10 tricks is cold - I cannot see how to only make 9 here as some did

Hand 11:   Unlucky Ops, they mis-counted the trumps so I got a ruff in

Hand 13:   We are in the right contract here, my hand was not good enough to defend so showed both majors and let partner pick her best and play, she played well!

Hand 14:   Ops bid bravely after our 4 but I felt it would be a top or bottom regardless so doubled.  A lucky double and partner watched my 5 then 4 in s so I go the ruff

Hand 15:   I hadn't sorted my hand properly here and opened 1NT in error, I made a squeal and Alan offered me the chance to change the bid if it was a mechanical error.  It wasn't mechanical, just an error so I had to leave it and it played well, sorry Ops

Hand 19:  Ops got the defence right here - others made theirs, not fair!

Hand 20:  I wanted to pass partner's 2, wish I had!

Hand 24:   I played well here after the previous hand - losing a early on was the key to setting up the hand

Playing again tonight after dinner!

25th January 2018


Worked at home today to get work, bridge and house stuff done (2 laptops and my phone on the go non-stop!).

We had a viewing cancelled for Saturday as they have now sold and no news from the offer we have put in either as they were at a funeral today, should hear tomorrow.  Have lined up 2 more houses to see on Saturday in Frimley and Camberley though (both over our budget but think we can do a deal).


Link to Camberley House


Link to Frimley House


I was tired going into tonight and I offered to drive too, hadn't realised that half our team were the opposite direction to the match from me!!!).  Still, we all played well tonight (other than a couple of wobbles) and came through 17-3 in the end which puts us back on top for now.

Vee played at CBC tonight and loved playing with Val (loved everything about it apart from the bridge!) - he stayed to help at the end too with most of the committee with me in our match!

We have now booked the hall for the May bank holiday event and have sent off emails internally to CBC and YHBC to start advertising.

Unfortunately, our main rival team didn't play tonight as one of their members had to go to hospital, hope she is ok and sent my thoughts and wishes to them.

Brief Summary of Swings:

Hand 4:   We made a part score and team mates took Ops down 2 (+7)

Hand 7:   Our Ops missed game and team mates made 3NT (+10)

Hand 10:  We took 3 off 2 and team mates made a part score (+7)

Hand 13:  We went off 3 in a good sacrifice (not doubled), team mates got the defence wrong and let 5x through (-15)

Hand 16:  We made 1NT+2 and team mates made a part score (+6)

Hand 21:  We made game and team mates defeated theirs (+7)

Hand 22:  We made a part score and team mates made a part score too ! (+7)

Hand 23:  We defeated a game with excellent defence, team mates made theirs +1 with amazing play (seriously well done Alan!!!!)  (+7)

Playing twice again tomorrow

24th January 2018


Our offer on the Aldershot House was rejected this afternoon, have increased a little to a full and final offer - if it is not accepted tomorrow, it wasn't meant to be!

Joyce (from CBC and YHBC) kindly forwarded details of her friend's house last night and we have arranged a viewing for Saturday morning.  The house looks amazing though the bedrooms are a little smaller than we would want (on paper) but will have a look and see.

Vee hosted the Improvers tonight and 3 tables, well done to Chris and Carole (back to back wins and launching a late challenge for the title now!)

Great to see Trevor and Barbara win in the main group at YHBC too, well done!

Also I notice Geoff and Frances top EW at Woking this afternoon, well done to you too!

For us, a match at home:

Unfortunately, a loss tonight but narrowly (11-9) but does drop us to 2nd overall (1 point below the leaders - my friend and occasional partner and his team!)

We were 17 Imps up at half time but a few errors cost us in the 2nd half.

Brief Summary of Swings:

Hand 3:   I made my 3NT and team mates defeated theirs (+12)

Hand 5:   We took 2NT off and team mates made 1NT +2 (+6)

Hand 6:   Partner couldn't make her 3NT but team mates let theirs through, defence was not easy though (-12)

Hand 8:   We took 3NT off 3 and team mates again made 1NT +2 (+7)

Hand 13:  We go off in a slam and team mates go off doubled (-12)

Hand 14:  I make my 3NT and team mates defeat theirs (+6)

Hand 18:  I make my 4 and team mates take theirs 2 off (+8)

Hand 19:  Ops miss the slam and team mates bid theirs (+13)

Hand 22:  Ops make a part score and team mates go off 3 (-10)

Hand 23:  Ops make 12 tricks but in game, team mates in a part score (-10)

Hand 24:  Ops bid a slim 3NT and team mates take a part score off (-7)

Another BBL match tomorrow (Away)

23rd January 2018


I had a lot of work and house legal work to do today, manic and non-stop!

Managed to leave 10 minutes early to get my hair cut though then took 40 minutes to get home from Camberley at 17:40!!!

Dinner and then out to badminton - lost 2 close games and won the rest - I am getting back to my old self on court (though more of me now!).

Really enjoyed tonight too, fun games and completive although I lost all energy towards the end!

BBL match tomorrow (home match).

22nd January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in the first of the CBC Monday Championships

Oh dear!!!  Not our night, didn't felt as if we did much wrong (other than 2 bids from me, more later) but it just didn't work, still 9 more tries to get 6 good scores and I have had such a hard day with work and the House (and most pairs tonight asking about the house, it's really nice but also a distraction!).

On the plus side (personally), we had our Mortgage offer in principal tonight and it was more than we were expecting, means we have a lot more flexibility now.  Should hear tomorrow if our offer on the Aldershot house is accepted.

Also, nice home made scones given me tonight (thank you Margaret!), eating one as I type this (yum!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:    After partner jumped in s, I woke up and looked for the slam.  Fortunate not to get a  lead and so 13 tricks made and only 3 others bid this

Hand 4:    I supported the too early so partner assumed I had 4 - we missed 6 here

Hand 10:  Ops have 7 or 6/ on here so our 1100 was a great sacrifice - unfortunately, nobody bid any of the slams so a zero!

Hand 11:  I should have re-bid 2NT (not 3NT) here and partner could have taken the A - 1 off would have been an above average score, my fault for the bidding here

Hand 15: Partner had a nice lead but played it brilliantly making more tricks than anyone else

Hand 18:  I should have just transferred to here, we cannot avoid being at the 3 level but stayman was never going to work here, sorry partner

Hand 19:  I set up the Ops winner to discard a , I need to push a through instead, drat!

Badminton tomorrow

21st January 2018


Other than shipping (in the snow!) and house chores, we have done nothing today !!!

Slightly disappointed in the number of votes for yesterday’s house choice but I guess people generally read this after a Bridge session!  The vote is still open below.....

Vote seems to be for Aldershot overall so far though

Monday Championship tomorrow at CBC

20th January 2018


House viewing day - 5 of them!!!

10am in Farnborough to see a nice house 5 minutes from where we are now but the bedrooms too small.

11:15 in Blackwater but every room was wrong here and it just didn't suit us

12 Noon in Aldershot and we were there early and waited in the car.  Vee looked at me and said "You are not keen are you?"  - I made a sad face and said no, not really.  However, the house was perfect and suited us in every way with the entire work list to make it right for us being to fit a shower in the bathroom!!!

Then lunch and a chat about the Aldershot house and back out to Frimley

2pm in Frimley.  Nice house but no hall way, opening the front door to a small space and stairs up and a tight turn into the lounge.  The garden was too big for us really.

Then a coffee with Margaret on our way to the last house on the edge of the Old Dean estate, camberley.

3pm in Camberley.  This house had a nice kitchen but small lounge and no second reception room (which I want for Bridge matches!!!).  We could use the 4th bedroom for matches though and all the rooms were stunning upstairs.  The garden was perfect - small and laid out as an entertaining space.

What should we do here?

Just for fun (and completely anonymously), have your vote - links below to the top 3 and a vote button beneath.......


Aldershot Frimley Camberley


19th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session (also a Beryl Doughty round but we are not in that as a pair).

An interesting night full of great stuff and some errors (some system failing us, some us failing the system!!!)

Still, to get above 50% from the start we had and on a night where we gave away 670 for 2 of a major doubled making isn't too bad!!!

Good fun and thanks for a nice evening partner though my rules on discussing dark red and dark green only means that only 3 hands are left out below, a lot of work for me!!!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   After partner overcalled, I raised it to stop Ops bidding and finding game - unfortunately, game was not there and we went too far!

Hand 2:   I think partner can make this but we had good Ops, we missed the major fit though (system is or my bidding?)

Hand 3:     I must double 2 here and not bid 2, sorry partner

Hand 4:     I showed s and s - we missed a major fit in s!!!!

Hand 5:     I played this one reasonably well but only did as I should - others didn't fortunately

Hand 6:     I showed and a minor and with only 2 s I think partner should ask for the minor - but agree, we could be going into a disaster if my minor is s

Hand 7:     Partner played this superbly, well done partner!

Hand 8:     See above!

Hand 9:     Ops are in the right contract but we defended well and others made 1NT

Hand 10:   We defended this extremely well - unfortunately, partner doubled them!  The double in our system is penalties (3 is take out)

Hand 11:   Easy double for me - a win for partner's 3 level opening though

Hand 12:   Well bid here and partner played well

Hand 13:   We got the defence right here too to take this off

Hand 14:   Good Pas Out here, I don't bid in 4th seat unless I meet the rule of 15 (s and points)

Hand 16:   We did well to stay low here (although, partner missed a trick.....!)

Hand 17:   A little pushy by partner raising my simple overcall but he has a nice hand - good double by Ops though

Hand 19:   We did well to only be 1 off here but we missed our minor fit!!!  Ops opened 2 with only 5 s and had 11 points though.....!

Hand 20:   Partner passed a new bid at the 3 level here, odd but he wasn't sure of our system and didn't take it as forcing

Hand 21:   I made an extra trick here as Ops played A and K setting up my hand

Hand 22:   We defended this like experts - odd considering how we did overall tonight!

Hand 23:   This was a good double but we got the defence wrong!

House hunting tomorrow, odd phrase that as we know where they are!!!  Still, 5 to go and see and hope we like at least one as I don't want to be looking at houses in all our spare time......!

19th January 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A fun session as always and we played well throughout (though a very bad start!).

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:   A tricky hand for the Ops here, I think the key is not to play 2 s early as I can get in and attack them (as I did).

Hand 4:   Ops had a bidding misunderstanding here and didn't realise the 3 was a transfer - we quietly took all the tricks and surrendered

Hand 5:   I raced off to game in s without giving partner chance to show her hand, terrible, sorry partner

Hand 6:   Partner needs to take the trumps out after winning the K here then we take this 2 off

Hand 11:   I made a poor overcall here and partner lead my suit then after it lost the first 2 tricks commented to say "well, that was no good!!!", of course, it was the way to defeat the contract....!

Hand 13:   This is tough, but after partner opens 2 (weak), I think Ops should leave us there - 13 is a bit low to double with (for me)

Hand 14:   Ops set-up the Q here giving me the setting trick, again, it is tough here but I have shown shape (though I did open light)

Hand 15:   Partner has overcalled s here so I think it is not the best lead, try and find my entry and I will play the s.....

Hand 16:   Lucky here, Ops won the A and retuned a low which dummy's 10 won, phew!

Hand 18:   We are the only pair in game here with 26 HCP between us!

Hand 21:   Hard to bid the slam but felt sorry for Ops here who thought I was still in dummy at the end so kept the wrong card allowing me to make 13 tricks

Playing again tonight after dinner!

18th January 2018

Home Counties:

Playing with my County partner in my first match of the season (I didn't play in the first match).

I took a half day and went into town early to get food and then settle into the coffee house across from Young Chelsea and meet my partner for a chat about our system.

We were 17 Imps up at half time with a solid performance from most of our pairs but it turned into 20 down overall (Lost 14-6) despite us having a great card in the second half (the only pair to bid a slam, 2 in fact!).

It happens, shame, especially as it is a long day for me (left here at 3pm and back at 1am!!!).

Playing twice tomorrow

17th January 2018

YHBC Improvers:

Hosting the Improvers for the first time in ages and ages!!!!

I have completed most of my actions from the CBC committee meeting today!

Only 2 tables tonight and 4 "Hosts" so we sent Vee home and Val and I took 1 table each and Keith played.  I am disappointed that attendance is still low but so many colds and bugs out there I think a lot are suffering and some are away.

From a selfish point, I loved it tonight!  I felt as if I was able to help and add value and commented on most hands after they were played, also wrote notes and so will give a rough commentary on the hands from Chris and Carole's viewpoint (they did well tonight too, see comments below!!!)

Having sent Vee home (who sewed a button on my shirt and did all the housework!!!), Val and Keith drove me home.  We are so grateful to them both who help on and off the bridge table and don't know what we would do without them.

The Commentary:

Hand 1:   Good bidding all round and stopped in the right contract.  Ops missed the last trump though and so only made 8 tricks - he was cross with himself and I think it spurred him on to do well the rest of the night!

Hand 2: A lot to look at here.  Duplicate is all about the vulnerability and shape.  Here, green, 5 MUST be bid (and Keith did).  Even going down, the Ops need to get you 4 down to make a profit (800 vs 620 for Game).  As it happens, 5 makes!!!  5 was the right bid for this reason and it should have made.  North ruffed 2 s before setting up the s - they are the key to the hand along with seeing the void on the first round.  Must keep entries in both hands through ruffs to make this.

Hand 3:   Great play here.  South lost 2 s to generate an entry in dummy through the trumps to utilise the Q to throw the losing - great play (I was willing it in my head and every card I mentally called for she played!  Ops bid the s over 1, another point on this hand is that West should Double first then support whichever suit partner bids.

Hand 4:   Great play all round on this board - Kevin did so well to throw the losing rather than ruff the 3rd and shorten trumps, same at the other table!

Hand 5:   Both play the same system please!!!  After 1NT, 2 was bid (but North bid per the system and took it as s and a Minor).  A disastrous 3 was then found!!!  Using the system, bid 2 (long suit), 2 (relay), 2 and pass out.  Cappalletti bids here are:

2 Long single suit, partner must relay with 2
2 Both Majors (5/4 either way)
2 5 and a Minor (at least 4)
2 5♠ and a Minor (at least 4)
2NT Both Minors (I prefer 5/5 here)

Hand 6:   Ops didn't split the honours here, if they do, they trap the J for the 9th trick.

Hand 7:   Ops are in the right contract, but it doesn't make and Chris and Carole defended well here

Hand 8:   Bidding is correct, play was VERY good - Crossed to Dummy with a and took the finesse - pinned the s too, was great to watch!

Hand 9:   Such a wild hand here, great bidding and 6 is the right sacrifice but lucky not to be doubled

Hand 10:   Chris was wise not to open 1 here (you can but I wouldn't either).  Bidding then went 2 (weak) and all passed.  I would have bid 3 as South though and then 3 is the contract and a lead has been asked for.  The other table went on to 5 and got doubled so the extra trick given away was wiped out.

Hand 11:   Defended well here but the other table was allowed to play in 3

Hand 12:   Doomed here but I think 1NT is a better bid than 2 here - pass by all was an ever better bid it seems!!!  4-4-4-1 hands are very tricky

Hand 13:   Ops overcalled with a 4-card suit and slightly miss-played it too - I don't think overcalling with only 4 cards is advisable

Hand 14:   Great play here, very easy to go off but I could see the concentration and each card played was thought out.  Ops gave a ruff and discard, but you still need to spot it and work out what to do, Chris realised the losing could be thrown and ruffed in dummy, perfect!

Hand 15:   This hand was not loaded somehow at the club, but I have submitted it now.  Stayed in the right contract and played it well to make 2NT, the other table bid and made 9 somehow though

Playing at Young Chelsea tomorrow in the Surrey team for the Home Counties league (my favourite bridge!)

16th January 2018

CBC Committee:

A busy day at work today and also arranging lots of viewings for houses we are interested in (all day Saturday!!!) as well as sorting out all the paperwork and set-up for selling our house - lucky and can multi-task!

No badminton tonight as we had a Camberley Committee Meeting.

The meeting went well and we resolved a few issues and sorted out some items (though some carried over as we finished after 10pm tonight!).

Geoff hosted and did a great job - trying to persuade Val to do a bit less was a general theme tonight although I won't go into details here!

We had an invite from Berks to join the Berks team in an annual Teams event and have sent an email via CBC website on this, hopefully we will get some interest as it is a good event to play in.  I am free on Weds 21st March but no partner (if any reader is interested, let me know!!!)

We have a good bunch on the committee and I think most members would be surprised how much we all do for the club.  I think we all enjoy the task though and like to help and make a difference.

We welcomed Moira onto the Committee for her first meeting too and she took on a few duties straight away and had points to make (it is not always easy to find your voice in an established committee group).

I think this shows what a good group we are and also what a good addition Moira will be!

I shared my news about accepting the offer on our house at the end and a few were keen to see the house we have sold so I shared the advert on my phone.

Hosting the Improvers tomorrow with Vee (or on my own if he wants a night off, he has worked hard recently and I am free this week).

15th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

We have decided to accept an offer on our house (full asking price!).  They seem very nice too and flexible on the date - we have until July to find somewhere but they could move earlier if it suits us!!!  Perfect buyers.  We have arrange a number of viewings for this weekend, we need to get moving now (literally!)

Slightly below par tonight but both of us have had a tough week and weekend and both were just not quite feeling it tonight.  Still nice to partner Jo, we still did some great stuff and enjoyed most of the night.  It did seem that even our good hands didn't generate good scores though!  Still, finished on exactly 50%!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 5:    Unfortunate here, I bid 3NT but partner didn't know I had 2s and felt it wasn't good enough to leave it with that shape - I can't blame her at all but 3NT is a good contract

Hand 12:   Brilliant from partner here making an extra trick!  I forced the bid and trusted her when 2 was bid and she made the most of the hand!

Hand 13:   We defended well here but an interesting hand to see how the weak hand should take charge, if they insist on their long suit they find the best contract of 4

Hand 15:   Partner took charge and signed off in 5, I felt we were worth more and bid it anyway, sorry partner

Hand 19:   Tricky contract here but the was right and then the s roll in - not everyone made it though

Hand 20:    beat s, Ops could have made 4 as it happens

Hand 21:   An impossible contract here, sorry partner - did well to make 8 tricks as it happens (once Ops found the switch).  With a little more time, the  finesse could be taken for 9 tricks but not in time (at our table)

Hand 23:   My fault again here - I discarded a and should have thrown one of the away to take this off, drat!

Bridge Committee for CBC tomorrow night

14th January 2018

Affiliated Teams of 8:

Playing with a regular partner and 3 other pairs from Camberley:

Jane Green & Keith Wilson

Ian Lewis & Nick Browne

John Fairhurst & Philip Brown

Andy Fry & Steve Crawford

Easiest way to view the scores is through the Matches -   Session 1        Session 2

Our plans changed at the start today, Nick and Steve were meeting me at my house and then I would drive them.  Steve was on his way when I had an email from Nick saying his garage door was jammed and couldn't get the car out!  Fortunately, I had left plenty of time and so I took Steve to Nick's and then went from there.  We still arrived 30 minutes early and time to eat and get settled in.

All the team arrived in good time (Farnham had a man who got held up and missed the first hour!) and we start just about on time.

A lot of seriously good players at the event and 14 teams entered, was always going to be tough but we started off well and our 4 were on +22 at half time (we were just below par as an 8 though).

The second half was not quite as good and slipped a little - still, 10th out of 14 not too bad all considered.

The Highs and Lows:

First Half:

Hand 2:    A fairly flat board other than Jane and Keith getting +1100!!!

Hand 4:    We went off less than others here

Hand 6:   Good sacrifices by Ops here at 2 tables

Hand 7:    We got +500 against our local rivals!  They even commented to say "when we double your 1NT, you should be squirming not us!)

Hand 8:   1 of our pairs not in game

Hand 11:   1 of our pairs chose the wrong slam

Hand 14:    1 of our pairs made a game!

Hand 15:    1 of our pairs didn't bid the slam but the other defeated a slam!

Hand 19:   1 of our pairs went off in a game

Hand 20:   Ops made plus scores as we went off in our contracts

Hand 24:   We over-bid here

Hand 25:    1 of our pairs defeated a slam!

Hand 26:    We made our contract!

Second Half:

Hand 1:    1 of our pairs defeat game

Hand 3:    We make game as do our other EW, both part scores on the other tables

Hand 5:   Ops bid a slam against us

Hand 6:  Partner went off in his game 

Hand 8:  We got +300!  

Hand 10:   Game bid against one of our pairs

Hand 11:   3NT -4 for one of our pairs

Hand 12:  Good defending by all of our pairs and a good sacrifice by us  

Hand 13:   One of our pairs didn't make their game

Hand 15:   -1100 by one of our pairs

Hand 24:   One of our pairs didn't bid game

Playing at CBC tomorrow

10th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in 5th of the YHBC Teams Series.

Val hosted the Improvers tonight and Keith was well enough to play too so we had 3 full tables, starting to pick up again.  Pleased to see Chris & Carol back on top tonight too, well done girls!

Our house went live today and by 9am we had our first viewing lined up.  3 more came in before bridge too so have 4 lined up now and we need to get a move on finding a new home!

Our bridge was good mostly but a few bad wobbles (my fault on our side).  A slight plus overall but not a good score.  I enjoyed the session though, Jo is such  good player to have on your side, I just hate it when I let her down.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Team mates bid game and our Ops missed it

Hand 8:   We missed game but I didn't feel I could reverse with my hand, only 2 pairs found 4 though

Hand 12:   Team mates bid game and our Ops missed it, I think they find it if they open 1 rather than 1NT (with 15)

Hand 13:   We missed game here, again, not easy to bid it - partner played it perfectly and I felt bad for not raising (it is teams so I think I should have)

Hand 16:   We missed a hard to bid minor game, Ops tried 3NT against team mates and they took it off for a double plus

Hand 18:   Contract not entered correctly here but it was 4 at team mates table.  We sacrificed into 5 which was a good score, well supported partner

Hand 26:   My fault here, Ops stopped in 4 and I bid 4 so pushed them into game

Hand 27:   I made a terrible double - team mates also went off in theirs when should really make 12 tricks but not as easy as it looks

Playing in the CBC Thursday Championships tomorrow.  Have our first person viewing our house too.

13th January 2018

House & London:

Lots of viewings today (7!!!) they produced 2 offers too so we can now sell if we want but we haven't found anywhere as yet, not got our finances in order and one offer wants to move in this month (too soon) and the other in June (too late!!!).

We have a friend staying too and so went for breakfast as the first viewing happened, then off to London for the day.

We had a great time, went to see 42nd street, loved it - was well performed.  I felt it needed a bit more of a story but was well worth seeing.

Then pizza express for dinner followed by a lot of drinking in various pubs and bars (too much really but was a good night!).

Teams of 8 tomorrow.....

12th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A wild night tonight, we arrived later than normal due to the food delays but got there in time (just).

Our card shows a lot of big highs and lows, worth a look!!!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 7:   Very lucky here, neither of the Ops felt they could bid after 1NT (me), double, transfer, completed transfer.  Turned out to be a great sacrifice

Hand 8:   Ops didn't attack s here and partner had time to get everything away for 2 more tricks than really possible

Hand 9:   With us both bidding, Ops kept bidding too (up to 4).  We defended very well too

Hand 10:  Hand of the decade so far!!!!  2 (weak), 3 (take out double as we use Hackett, double would be penalties).  3 (enquiry) by partner, 4 (natural, me), 6 (partner), gulp (me!!!).  He had forgotten the system and thought I had s and s, we are now at the 6 level with a 2-4 fit!!!!  lead comes, I win it in dummy.  Low  to my K, 9 and it runs, 10 and covered so win with Q, A.  Now there is 1 out.  I run the s, they all win.  Now a low from me and big pause - do I take a deep finesse or will the J drop - if I had taken the finesse, it would have worked and contract made - I didn't, drat!  Still, amazing hand and to think, I nearly pulled off the biggest coup in my lifetime!

Hand 12:  Ops didn't go on here, Also better with a lead

Hand 13:   Ops found out the situation but didn't go back to dummy to take the finesse again

Hand 14:   Very nice defending again here, we took a lot more tricks than we should have here - I missed my 9 as a winner though, we actually would have taken it off if I had watched the s better

Hand 15:   We missed 7NT but did at least find 7, nobody else did

Hand 16:  Partner opened light here - my redouble was reasonable if he had a slightly better hand.....!

Hand 17:  Odd moment from partner here - he felt that they would need the ♠s and doubled, I should have lead a but forgot - even so, 11 tricks off the top here - not your best double partner (and against my partner too!!!!)

Hand 22:   The double should have been pulled really - as it wasn't, I assumed all the key cards in North and made 2 over tricks - 3NT natural would actually have scored better but was still a good score

Hand 23:   1 (could be short), 1 (partner), 1 (me), Pass (I don't think South can pass here) - then 1 all pass.  Partner made an extra trick too but a very odd auction here

Hand 24:   We found the slam but again missed the grand - nobody did though and not sure if we could really bid it?

Playing in the Affiliated Teams of 8 tomorrow.

12th January 2018 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

A nice session today and had quite a few laughs, nice to enjoy the game as well as being competitive!!!

Not many errors but some Ops did really well, not much more we could have done and enjoyed.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:  I should have made this, a tight contract but let West in with the  and lost too many s

Hand 4:  A big hand here and we found a slam but not the grand, nobody else did either though

Hand 11:  I played well here but Ops could have ruffed the  to stop me throwing everything away

Hand 13:  I should have left the Ops in 3s, they were wise to double me though

Hand 14:  A low level contract but I had to play well to make it

Hand 15:  Partner played superbly here - lucky Ops never found the switch though!

Hand 22:  I opened this a weak 2, have been advised before that it is best not to unless your points are in the suit.  I did well to make it but we need to be in s this time, sorry partner

Home at 5 and met Iain who is here for the weekend, off to get Fish & Chips for us all but tried 2 shops and both closed!!!  Came home and just had enough time to cook some chips and chicken dippers for us all

11th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in first of the CBC Thursday Championships

Had our first viewing tonight.  They had to cancel as work pattern changed but Vee was able to show them round at 19:30 (instead of the Agent).  They seemed to like the house and so a positive first viewing.  We need to get a move on in terms of finding a house now as we have 4 more viewings lined up on Saturday!

We had a solid start but didn't shine, a good base to work from though as we need 6 scores out of the 10 events.

Partner played really well, my bidding was not always good for pairs though.

Tonight's hands.......

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:    We got the timing right here and took our 3 Aces and 2 s.  Ops may do better to keep playing s through partner rather than going for the s

Hand 3:    I should value my hand better here and raise after partner jumped.  The void is very powerful on this auction.

Hand 4:    Needs a lead I think but how would partner know that?

Hand 5:    I over-valued my hand here, totally my fault, sorry partner

Hand 7:    Ops in the right contract making the right number of tricks

Hand 10:  Ops mis-counted and bid with 5 points.  They then tried to rectify this and partner waited and then doubled.

Hand 11:  Well bid Ops, only 2 other found game here

Hand 14:  Partner found the best contract for us and played well.  Perhaps Ops should bid on though?

Hand 16:  I was too pushy here, sorry partner.  Some made game but I don't think it is there

Hand 18:  Only 2 others bid game here, partner overcalled 2NT to show both red suits so I know game is on.

Hand 23:  Ops cannot make this yet quite a lot did.  Felt bad for Ops as he did all he could.  I took my AK s before playing partners , perhaps others didn't?

Hand 26:  Partner played incredibly well here - going up with Q trick 1 was the right play and it worked - time to set up the s in peace now and the rest worked well, well done partner!

Playing twice tomorrow.

9th January 2018


First time back since mid December and my arm and leg hurt today!  I didn't let it stop me and stretched for a bit and doused myself in deep heat before I played.

I did quite well tonight but my touch shots didn't work well, lots of power though!

Went for a drink after as one of our friends is recovering from a spinal operation and wanted some company and support, Vee went at 8pm and had a few drinks (5 of them) and then Dave and I joined them after badminton for a pint and a catch up.

Saw a house tonight too (Farnborough) and it seemed nice, not perfect but was nice.  We could see that with a bit of work over time it would suit us.  Will wait and see a few others yet though.

A bit of bridge work tonight too, re-scoring CBC for Monday nights scores.

Teams at YHBC tomorrow as Val hosts the Improvers (Vee has been asked to play in a team too).   We are so lucky to have Val and Keith (who is under the weather at the moment, get well soon Keith).

8th January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Our house viewing was cancelled tonight as they are not ready for viewing, why did the Agent confirm?  Irritating but no rush (our house goes live tomorrow I believe).

A hard day at work today too and still have a slight cough but really not bad now.  Had a very spicy curry for dinner too which cleared things out!

We had no real issues tonight and all went well, a few hands could have been better but not sure we should go on really, others did and it paid off for them.  Our defending was really good tonight though, I like it when that happens as it is a clear sign that we are on the same wave length and communicating well.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   We are in the right contract here but the good score was unfortunate, Ops revoked giving us an extra trick.  I always feel this is unfair really

Hand 4:   Ops opened light (but with great shape) but then got into a bit of a mess and we took advantage with great defending

Hand 7:   I was asleep here, partner bid 1 then 2 and I should then bid 3 (which I think partner then raises), I passed 2, silly Ian - sorry partner.  The play was perfect too and my bidding ruined the score.

Hand 10:   Ops agreed s then bid 3 - we stayed quiet then and defended well to take them off.  Partner didn't ruff until the right moment and the timing was perfect!

Hand 11:   Ops in the right contract here

Hand 16:   Tricky for Ops here but the weaker hand needs to take control (I think) - play in the weakest hands long suit (especially when 6 of them).

Hand 20:   We defended this well here but Ops got the timing wrong and didn't ruff the  and we kept forcing and so partner made 2 and a

Hand 22:   Ops opened 4s here and I put a cheeky 4 bid in (bad bid but I felt I had to do something I wasn't sure if double would be penalties here, I see one pair did that and it was left in - I would mean it as take out!).  They bid 5s which we then took off.

A house to view in Farnborough tomorrow and then Badminton.

7th January 2018


Shopping this morning and house chores then off to Ashtead to see my step-brother (they have been in their flat 5 years and are about to move, we hadn't seen their flat until now!).

Spent a couple of hours there and had coffee and cake and a good chat.  Then saw Margaret on our way home and shared a bottle of wine between us as we had a catch up.

A light supper and TV again tonight before a busy week (again).

6th January 2018


Clearing and cleaning house first thing and had it photographed at 10:30 for listing Monday or Tuesday.

Saw our first house this afternoon in Sandhurst today, it was fine but looked better on paper.  The lounge was an OK size but the wrong shape and our furniture wouldn't fit.  There was only parking for 2 cars and no street parking and the kitchen was nice but looked amazing on paper.  Garden and bedrooms all perfect though.

It is only the first house we have seen so no decisions either way at this stage - more on Monday and Tuesday to see and will keep looking online for more.....

A few bits of bridge admin for CBC and YHBC today in-between house stuff.

Take Away tonight and relaxing in front of the TV with a bottle of wine (and Vee!)

5th January 2018


Playing with my life partner in a regular club session that was also used to qualify the Berks Waller Bowl.

Still coughing this morning and partner had other things going on too so we missed CBC this afternoon.

I had a long hot soak and a few hot drinks (Lemsip mainly!) and felt so much brighter after lunch.

Cleared the house ready for photos tomorrow and relaxed for the day.

Tonight went well, a few good things by Ops but not much wrong by us, just missed out on the points but may still be able to enter the Waller Bowl, will see!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   I was a little ambitious here and put partner into game, he played really well but was lucky not to get a  lead or switch

Hand 5:   Ops missed game here

Hand 6:   I played well here but 4 is always on by East I think

Hand 8:   I had the option here to support partners s or bid 3NT, I think I should support the s really but my bid worked out this time (doesn't make it right though) - if I had got the s right I would have made 12 though

Hand 9:   I was talked out of 3NT here, after a slightly odd 1 overcall by North, I should have bid 2 to ask partner if we can do to NTs....

Hand 11:   Here we had a good score but I think partner needs to reevaluate his hand after I jump to 4s (I bid first).  Partner's hand is now worth 17 and I jumped, 4NT here now I think....

Hand 14:   We missed game here after a 2 overcall from Ops put us off

Hand 16:   We defended well here, Ops bid correctly but it hurt them on this hand - really, the East hand cannot bid (and they didn't), those that did were rewarded though

Hand 18:   I should have played the 9 from dummy here, no idea why I didn't

Hand 22:   After 1NT, 3NT I felt I had to take action with my shaped hand - it turns out I was right

Hand 23:   Ops pushed us into game here and partner played it really well.  Ops were shocked when I said I would not have raised it but I can see 2 s 2s and a to be lost

No bridge this weekend but more on the house and seeing family too.

4th January 2018

CBC Teams:

Not well tonight and neither was partner so we stayed home rather than passing germs on.  Our team mates understood too, hate letting people down but am sure most would understand and not want to catch our colds.

We had a meeting tonight with a mortgage guy and all sorted (in principle) and also lined up 2 viewings for houses we may like to move to, all go now!

Results of Teams in the link above (a red thumbs down as I wanted to be there!).

Health permitting, may play twice, once or none tomorrow!  Although I feel ok in myself, if I am still spluttering and coughing, I don't want to be around others in a confined space.

3rd January 2018


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Worked at home today as waiting for my contract be extended (was done by the end of the day!).  Our "For Sale" notice went up today too as well as an energy certificate for the house.

Playing with my monthly partner but at Farnham for a change (we are both  members so should make use of it!).  Vee hosted the Improvers at YHBC too but only 2 tables, still part of the Festive season though.

Tonight was a disaster for us, mainly good things by the Ops but we didn't hep ourselves either.....

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Partner went off here but I think we are in the right contract but strong defence and possibly making use of the  suit rather than the s?

Hand 4:   Ops did what they should here, nobody else did!

Hand 6:   We talked about this hand a lot, I won the A and then played the J - in my mind, I cannot possibly want to retain the lead and am asking partner to overtake and play a .  Partner didn't agree and felt I should play a low which she wins and then plays a anyway through lack of any alternative.  Frustrating!

Hand 10:   Cannot blame partner here, the finesse works and most did it but if it fails the contract crashes down.

Hand 11:   I open 3 here (our system), if I don't, we will get a re-bid from partner of 2NT which I then raise

Hand 12:   A tough contract here and I played well (at last!!!) - I took the finesse and it failed to the Q.  I then played my J on the next attempt and no flicker from North and I stopped for ages to ponder the values in each hand and eventually crashed the K with the A, phew!!!  I was also tested with a low in the play from which I got right too

Hand 13:   Ops did what they should here, nobody else did!

Hand 14:   A massive hand, a massive mis-fit and a terrible bid by me!  I couldn't picture the hand not being good enough, sorry partner.

Hand 15:   Ops did what they should (less than really as game could have been bid!) but not many others did as well!!!

Hand 27:   I think partner should open 2 here (despite being in 4th seat), the singleton K isn't worth a whole K here in my view.  Even so, 4 is not unreasonable on almost any other trump split!

Playing in the first of the CBC Teams series tomorrow.

2nd January 2018

NICKO (Round 2):

Playing with Nick and Colin & David.  We are Camberley "B" and match 32 on round 2 on the link above.

An hours drive to Beaconsfield and we met Nick there (who came on his way back from Manchester).

This is a Knockout event (National Inter Club Knock Out) so a win by 1 or 100 is the same, for what it is worth we lost 52-74 but had chances!  We were 3 down at half time and some big swings in 2nd half but the Grand bid by Ops was too much for us.

We used pre-dealt hands and have the hands HERE

Ops were all really nice and friendly and was really good to play the match with them, I love this level of bridge!  We wished them well for the next round(s) and genuinely meant it too.

As CBC, we wish Jane Green and her team well for their progress in the Plate (they have a tough first match against Basingstoke A).

First Half:

Hand 6:   4 is on and we bid it, Ops bid 4 and this only goes 1 off, we cannot win here but bid 5 and were doubled.  -13

Hand 7:   Ops can make 5 here but we sacrifice in 4 doubled 1 off.  +10

Hand 10:   We didn't bid game here, we must as it is teams!  -10

Hand 11:   We defeat 3NT (by 2) and team mates make theirs!  +11

Second Half:

Hand 14:   Partner plays really well here to make 12 tricks in 3NT, team mates defeat their Ops 3NT!!! +11

Hand 15:   We missed game here.  -6

Hand 17:   Partner plays really well here to make 11 tricks in 3NT, team mates defeat their Ops 3NT!!! +11

Hand 19:   We need to be in a 4-3 major fit here, Ops were but we go 1 off in 3NT.  -13

Hand 23:   We are in 3NT +4, Ops are in 7NT!!!! -17

Hand 24:   We go 1 off in 6 (I bid it as knew we had messed up the previous hand, I really shouldn't have), Ops make 3NT+2.  -11

Decided not to play badminton tonight and playing at Farnham tomorrow night.

1st January 2018

New Years Day:

A day of getting ready for the new year and seeing friends - saw my bridge partner for a coffee and catch-up and then more friends for games, cheese and nibbles (all games were fun and I won 2 and 2nd in the other 2, Vee won 1 too!).

Have had to extend my holiday as have a NICKO match at 2pm tomorrow then Badminton in the evening if I am up to it!

31st December 2017

New Years Eve:

A day seeing family and my step-sisters new house today (dropping off pressies too)

A bit of shopping and chores but a relaxing day and watched a few films too

Some analysis of yesterday's hands via email with a few people too, interesting comments, good to learn some insight

As we are now in 2018, may I wish all my readers a wonderful 2018 filled with joy, laughter and happy bridge playing!!!




The Bridge Player's Prayer

Author: Unknown

Lord, grant me a partner who won't trump my Aces.

Deliver me from short suits and cards without faces.

Grant me finesses that work as I've planned,

And just once today, please, a nice Grand Slam hand.

30th December 2017

EBU Year End Swiss Teams:

Playing with a team (YHBC players) in the EBU End of Year Swiss Teams.

Our Team Score Cards


Pairs Ranking (X-Imps)

Alan drove us all and we made good time and arrived quite early.  Good job really as it took forever to get a coffee!!!

A tough field here and 77 Teams, we don't get off to the best start (despite our Opps having a man short and had to get a stand-in for our match!!!!  They went on to win the whole event too though we never found out if the original player turned up or not).

7 matches of 7 boards and we lost all 3 before the break, the food must have energised us though as we won the next 3!!!  The last match was tough though, but we had the chance to win it, just didn't take it!

In the end, we all enjoyed the day and I think we all did more good stuff than bad!

Match Summary:

Match 1 (Lost 5-15):

Hand 1:   (View Hand) Team mates didn't bid game

Hand 6:   (View Hand) We were in a part score making, Team mates defeated an ambitious 3NT

Hand 7:   (View Hand) Partner bid 3 with a terrible hand, unfortunately I had a nice hand, so we got too far, should have doubled their 4 - disaster!

Match 2 (Lost 3-17):

Hand 11:   (View Hand) Team mates were too ambitious here.....

Match 3 (Lost 7-13):

Hand 21:   (View Hand) A reasonable contract but Team mates had tough Opps here (Mike Bell) and didn't make it

Match 4 (Won 13-7):

Hand 22:   (View Hand) We defended well here and Team mates made a part score for a double plus

Hand 24:   (View Hand) Still cannot understand why partner didn't support my s here so I raised to 6 after his 5 bid - odd but a blip

Hand 26:   (View Hand) Both pairs defeat Opps contracts here!

Hand 28:   (View Hand) Team mates bid the slam, our Opps bailed out (in an odd way too!)

Match 5 (Won 11-9):

Hand 32:   (View Hand) An amazing bid by partner which was doubled and made!!!

Hand 33:   (View Hand) It seems 5s is a good sacrifice and we didn't do it

Match 6 (Won 17-3):

Hand 36:   (View Hand) Team mates bid the slam and our Opps didn't

Hand 40:   (View Hand) We made our part score as team mates defeated an ambitious game

Hand 41:   (View Hand) I think partner should double here rather than bid 1NT - we had best defence against us too

Hand 42:   (View Hand) Opps open 3 after 2 passes and I have 19HCP, I double and it is passed out - a nice 1100, good pass partner!

Match 7 (Lost 6-14):

Hand 43:   (View Hand) We messed up the defence here and let a game through

Hand 44:   (View Hand) We both defeat Opps contracts here!

Hand 45:   (View Hand) We stayed in 1NT which partner played very well and team mates defeat an ambitious game

Hand 47:   (View Hand) We missed game here, but I bid my hand twice as it was - perhaps I should just go for it in teams though

A more relaxed day tomorrow and a quiet New Years just us at home with a few bottles of bubbly!

29th December 2017
29th December 2017

Nieces Wedding:

Wow!!!!!   What a lovely day today!!!

A relaxing morning and then get dressed up as my Niece got married!!!

Amy is the eldest of my Nieces and Nephews at 26 (makes me feel so old!!!) and she has a little girl (Scarlet, my Great Niece!!!) and has now married Andy.

They have been together a while but waited until they had a house and were settled, the whole family came today and we have a large family.

A wonderful church in Basingstoke and the Vicar was really friendly and made everyone feel at ease, though it was a bit cold!

The first service I have been to where the Vicar used an iPad rather than a book too!!!

An emotional service and the weather turned nice too (raining all morning then bright sunshine for the service and after!)

My Dad catered for the wedding but left his team in charge and enjoyed the day with us, he gave Amy away too - he was so proud.

Good food, great company and a lovely party - all the young kids were good and danced for most of the night.

Was really good to catch up with my Aunt's and Uncles and cousins and friends (mostly scattered over the country now) and even though I was driving, the time flew and was just the best day.

So pleased for them both and the whole family came together and welcomed Andy's family too

The drink flowed but nobody got too silly and no incidents - I am off to London for th EBU End of Season Teams tomorrow.

28th December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Another full day (we make the most of the time off!) - car in for minor repairs at 08:30 then errands then lunch then a friend comes to fix our outside lights and then dinner and out to bridge!

Not our finest effort again tonight but enjoyable with a few mishaps!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   We set-up a  trick here but didn't take it, would have been a good board had we done so

Hand 4:   Passed round to my flat 10 count and I pass, a good pass!

Hand 7:   I bid 2NT over Ops 1NT (meant as the unusual) partner didn't think it was and a useful discussion ensued - better if I pass anyway as it happens!

Hand 10:   Ops stopped in the right contract, well done Ops!

Hand 11:   Why didn't I pass here, 2NT would have been a great score!!!

Hand 15:   Letting partner double 6 would have been much better here, sorry partner

Hand 19:   Correct contract, wrong cards!!!  Partner could have done a little better but the 3 pairs allowed to make 4 meant we couldn't get a good score here

Hand 20:   Ops made a false sacrifice here, unlucky Ops

Hand 21:   We stopped low here and made what we should

Hand 23:   We defended well here and Ops didn't finesse my J though she nearly did!

No bridge tomorrow as am at my Nieces wedding!

27th December 2017

Day Off:

A nice day for me, Vee went to his Mums and I went with one of our lodgers to see Star Wars!!!

A big Star Wars fan and I loved it, well made film and worth watching.  Our lodger works at the Cinema so we got in for free but still cost £18 for food for us both!!!

Went to B&Q for the 4th time recently to get another new light for outside and hopefully the last one!!!  A friend is coming tomorrow to fix it (hopefully!).

Played games tonight and won 2 out of 3 games which was nice.

A day of finishing off lots of jobs and getting my car re-gassed for the Air-Con and a few minor bits done then Bridge at CBC tomorrow night!!!

26th December 2017

Boxing Day!:

A lovely day again today.........

We go to M&S for the sales and buy new shirts and some food then walk to my Dads at Noon

Nice to catch up with the family (more today!) and dinner at 1pm (Roast Beef) - pudding and cheese board later

Home by 6:30pm to relax with films and a nice bottle of Merlot, lovely!

25th December 2017

Christmas Day!:

A lovely day today.........

We wake up at a reasonable time (for the 2nd time for Vee who fed the cats at 6am!) then relax with breakfast.

Then a bottle of champagne and pressies when our lodgers surface (11am!!!) and walk to my Dads at Noon

Nice to catch up with the family and dinner at 4pm, absolutely stuffed but in a good way!

Home by 6:30pm to relax with films and more champagne, lovely!

24th December 2017


Another full day today as we see family and collect the car from our friends and spend longer than planned with my niece and great niece!!!

House chores and cooking a pre-Christmas meal for us and our lodgers

A night on the sofa now with films and champagne !

For those that appreciate reminders, tomorrow is Christmas Day!!!!

23rd December 2017


A little bit of shopping today (mainly to get ready for a Christmas meal we are doing at home for our lodgers Christmas Eve but also some new clothes and pressies for a friend).

We go and see John for an hour today and embarrass him with a gift or 2 and have a nice chat - then relax for a bit before heading over to friends.

A night of chat, drinks and nibbles and a few party games then walk home at 01:30 (very late for Vee!!!)

A lovely day and evening, off to my Dad's for a coffee and then a roast for the "family" in the evening - then Santa will be preparing himself for a long night (think he must stay up later than I do!!!)

22nd December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Unfortunately, there was an error with the Council for the Hall booking (we had booked it!!!) - a good turn out tonight too, shame.

I went to a friends to play board games instead - lost in a close game but was good fun.  I won a small secondary game after though (by 2 points!!!)

Seeing John again tomorrow to drop off his card and sort out a few IT things for him then drinks and nibbles at our friends in the evening

22nd December 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a friend in a regular club session.

A busy morning at home and also picked up my new glasses!!!  I then pick up John and then Dorothy and on to CBC

We had a lovely time this afternoon and got on well.  John played exceptionally well and was not too critical of my blunders

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:   We actually defended this very well but Ops didn't go up to 5 like others did

Hand 5:   Partner was the only one to bid after my 1 opener, it didn't turn out well this time but I don't see anything wrong with the bidding and was just unlucky

Hand 9:   Great passing partner!!!!  Unlucky for Ops here but thank you!!!

Hand 12:   I felt at the time that Ops had done us out of our contract but not much on our way so this turned out to be a good score - I still think Ops bid well here

Hand 17:   How many times do you get dealt 7NT in your own hand (as the 's split that is)?  Well, here is one hand where you do!!!

Hand 18:   Ops are in the right contract but I helped by covering the Q, I must play low and wait here, sorry partner

Hand 20:   Partner shines here, really good play to make 8 tricks here getting the s right and the s!

Playing again at YHBC tonight

21st December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A day of finishing the house (mainly our lodgers friend doing the work but another B&Q trip for me!) - Vee is now finished for Christmas too so we met a friend for coffee and then home to relax.

Vee played tonight too and did really well, so pleased for him and Val, well done both!

Not our finest night, mainly the Ops doing well against us but our declaring was only average too, still, it's nice to play with Barbara and quite comfortable which is always good, will be better next week!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Ambitious Ops but they were having a good night, just not this hand

Hand 2:   We were in the right contract here, slam is almost impossible to bid and nobody did

Hand 3:   I needed to switch to a  early on here to make another trick

Hand 5:   We need to find a  lead or switch here

Hand 8:   We found a fit so I pushed for 3NT, too ambitious, sorry partner, totally my fault

Hand 9:   We were very lucky here - I pushed again and we are wide open in the majors but had a  lead and partner played for 9 tricks in the minors (with a  trick that shouldn't have been made)

Hand 11:   Ops lost control of the trump suit and I unblocked partners s

Hand 13:   I had a play for 1 off but tried to make the contract - I thought partner was a little stronger for her 2 bid though

Hand 17:   We are in the right contract making the right number of tricks, good enough for a good score this time though!

Hand 21:   Again, right contract and right number of tricks for a good score!

Hand 22:   I was too pushy here and made a take out double but partner had nothing to say so just hoped I was strong enough to defeat 2, I wasn't - sorry partner

Hand 23:   I should have made 9 here but got the s wrong - some made 10 tricks though, not my night!

Playing with John tomorrow, will be so good to play with him again, it's been a while!

20th December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Vee hosted the Improvers for the last time this year but only 1 turned up!!!  It is close to Christmas and I guess a lot of people have commitments.  The one Improver wasn't comfortable playing in the Main Group and so went home happily and Vee and Keith made up the half table in the main group.

Our session went well tonight with only 2 bad scores, a few helping hands along the way but you take what you are given!  Partner played 6 hands and averaged 85%, well done partner!!!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   My hand was only worth 1NT here (I felt) so that is what I opened.  Ops made a 2 suited overcall and partner jumped to 3.  I raised to game.  Not many in game so we did well.

Hand 2:   We didn't get the defence right here but hard for either of us to make the  switch

Hand 3:   Partner played very well here but Ops didn't take the A which was a help

Hand 5:   Odd by Ops here, we bid up to 4 (a good contract) but they came in at the 4 level as a sacrifice and found it to be my best quality suit.  I doubled (but I am mean) for a good score.

Hand 7:   Partner played really well here and found the extra tricks!  He got everything right and was allowed to make the J on trick 1 for a small bonus

Hand 12:   Opps were unlucky here to find me with such good s and partner managed to get the s lead to set up my hand completely and I took the last 3 tricks

Hand 13:   Unlucky for Opps here - they are in a good contract that happens not to make.  Others made it though which hurt their score

Hand 15:   We defended well here - partner made his Q which he is unlikely to do if I don't lead it.

Hand 16:   I have no defence to 3NT and partner had overcalled s so I sacrificed in 4 - a good bid even if doubled

Hand 20:   Ops bid and made exactly what they should, not everyone else did which hurt our score

Hand 24:   Opps didn't get their defence right here and I managed to drop the singleton K as had worked out I had 10 tricks if I get the trumps out and lose to the K - however, it dropped and the s are good enough to throw my s away

Playing at CBC tomorrow and Vee is also playing at CBC (with Val)

19th December 2017

Surrey Lady Rose:

Our first match of the season against the winners of Division 2 in the league last year.

A day of sorting out bits around the house with some work and lunch out with Jo too.

Playing near Sevenoaks tonight so an hours drive and I pick up Margaret on the way.  Our team mates meet us there and we arrive a little early and almost at the same time!  On the way there I said "Why do we do this?  A lot of travelling just for some cards!!!" - we do it for the challenge and the thrill of winning tough matches or learning from those we lose - tonight, we won!!!

My results for teams can be seen HERE too.

We had a very strong pair with us tonight (I play County Matches with one of them and he played with a regular partner).  They carried us a little in the first half though we did well too.  The second half our card was actually better than theirs!!!  Playing 28 boards and travelling means I left my house at 17:15 and returned just after midnight.....!

First Half:

Hand 1: We defeat 5 here (we defended perfectly here) and team mates made theirs!

Hand 2: Partner made a slight error and went off in a slam - expensive but it happens and she kept calm and carried on.  One trump played on trick 2 and she would have been home

Hand 8: Ops played a tricky 3NT and we couldn't defeat it - our team mates went 1 off in 4

Hand 9: We pushed Ops up to 5 and partner doubled - a dubious double as only 1 off but still.  Team mates were left in 4 and made it!

Hand 10: We held Ops to 5, I wanted to go to 6 but couldn't tell which was a sacrifice on the bidding!  Team mates bid and made 6♠ - great job guys!

Hand 12: Great defending by us again here as we defeat 4 which our team mates made!

We find ourselves 28 up at half time and Opps put on a lovely home made spread that was truly delicious!!!

Second Half:

Hand 17: We go off in 3 here, partner can make it by playing a low from dummy twice - we missed 3NT though which was very thin but makes so would have been bad anyway

Hand 20: Ops didn't find game here and team mates did!  2 more of these where we talked Ops out of game but for 5 and 6 Imps so not quite a "High"

Hand 26: Team mates one major blunder here, 3NT plus 4 against us (we could have taken A) but our team mates bid 6NT and didn't drop the J and went 1 off, expensive but fortunately not too much

A loss of 11 in the second half but we win by 17 - this is a knockout so the score is not material, winner goes to the next round (we play Frances Hinden next!) and the runners up go to the Plate event.

Tomorrow am back at YHBC playing in the Main Group as Vee hosts the Improvers

18th December 2017

Surrey League:

Our first match of the season against the County Chairman's team!

My last official day at work today, off now until the 3rd January 2018!!!

Have a lot of house work to get done this week (repairs and maintenance and new carpets and preparing ready for photos etc) so I won't be bored!!!  No doubt some bridge admin and some work too as well as matches and bridge as normal this week.

Tonight we had pre-dealt boards (courtesy of Alan, thanks Alan!) so a little bit of a summary - my results for teams can be seen HERE too.

Partner was inspired tonight!  I must confess, I am normally the "pushy" one of the 2 of us but tonight Margaret had great instincts and kept putting me into tough but great contracts - match winning contracts!  Our Team Mates (Jo and Alan) had an equally good set and also had a series of match winning hands - it was just our night tonight - well done Team!

View the Hand File HERE

First Half:

Hand 7:  I show 15/16 and partner has a flat 16.  3NT at the Opps table, partner thinks more is there and asks for Aces then bids 6NT - both tables make 12 tricks but we get the slam bonus

Hand 8:  I bid weakly and partner has 11 points - not loving my suit she pushes again and I have no other bid than 3NT - it rolls in!

Hand 9:  Nothing is on for either side and we are a lucky team, we defeat the contract at our table and Team Mates defeat Opps contract for a small double plus

Hand 11:  Partner has 19 and doubles Opps 1NT then their 2S which makes - our only bad board but completely understandable.  It is not advisable to double at the 2 level in teams though.

Hand 12:  We defeat 4 at our table (not that we should) and Alan bid and made 6 for a big swing!

We find ourselves 30 up at half time and Opps put on a lovely festive feast for half time.

Second Half:

Hand 14:  Ops overcalled my 1NT with 2 and there it stood.  Team Mates bid 4 and made 12 (they made 10 against us)

Hand 17:  We defeat 4 and Team Mates make their 5 (Plus one!!!)

Hand 18:  Partner trusted my 1NT overcall and rather than bidding on with her 7 card  suit, she left me in 3NT - Opps pushed with the s up to 6s and Team Mates take it 3 off, unlucky Opps here though

Hand 19:  We take 2 off and Team Mates make 1NT +3

Hand 24:  Team Mates couldn't recall the system and so raised to 3NT going 1 off, they stayed in 2NT at our table making - unfortunate

A further 35 up in 2nd half and so 19-1 Win.  Of all the teams, this is not one I like to beat by this margin, they are all so nice and good friends - sorry Opps.

Tomorrow is our first Lady Rose match near Sevenoaks, so a bit of travel!!!  If we win that, we play the Hinden Team.....

17th December 2017

Birthday Meal:

A nice day, late start though but got shopping done (including Christmas pressies) then had a bottle of pink champagne with Margaret (and Val who happened to be going at the same time as us, a lovely treat!).

Margaret made some scones with a new recipe too and they were delicious.

Back home to get house work finished and then dress for dinner.  Our friends pick us up and drive us (we didn't know where!) - it turned out to be the Giggling Squid in Farnham and it was amazing, couldn't fault the staff or the food or the company - to make it even better, our friends said it was on them as a birthday treat (this was the closest we could get to our actual birthdays!!!)

A really lovely day today - working from home tomorrow for my last official day this year then our first Surrey League match

16th December 2017

Day Off:

A relaxing day today recovering from the previous week!

Not done any of the jobs that need doing but have identified those that need doing (that's a start though!)

Still feeling bad about last night too, I should have cancelled rather than let Alan down - needed today to recharge.

Our friends taking us out to dinner tomorrow, don't know where but am sure it will great!

A few matches this week but am off work now (other than a few bits to get done from home).

15th December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in another round of the Beryl Doughty Cup

Not our finest night tonight, I was not on good form and we really (genuinely) suffered with bad luck.  Still, last is not fun!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Partner slightly over-valued his hand but not unreasonably - still, unlucky that we made the tricks we should and others were allowed to make more

Hand 4:   Bad double from me, sorry crying

Hand 9:   This should have been a good sacrifice but others are not bidding (or making) 2s!!!

Hand 12:   Odd from partner here - not sure where the 3 came from, still cannot see this bid.....

Hand 13:   I made the right bid and it is always there, unfortunate for Ops that they doubled

Hand 15:   Good defending here partner, well done!  Great switch with not too many clues

Hand 17:   I should duck the first , I didn't count them - this is my error here but better if South plays the hand and I lead a I think

Hand 19:   I could have made this by playing low on the first  as Ops said he would have gone up with the Ace as he thought the lead was a singleton - still, I did better than the others here, phew!

Hand 21:   I opened 3 here, partner lead the K and it was costly, my fault again really but possibly partner could lead the 2?

Hand 22:   I should have set the  up here as dummy would have been good in the end, I mixed strategies and so none of them ended up working and turned a top into a bottom!

Hand 23:   Good lead partner but carry on with them!  I threw a away too which also cost

A day off tomorrow then out for dinner Sunday with friends - don't know where but being picked up - they are foodies so should be good!

15th December 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner at the CBC Christmas Party (Friday)!

Working this morning but finish early to get to the Party on time.  All set-up, well done Val, Sylvia and Frances!

Once again, I am still not a fan of "proper bridge" after a party and still pushing for "fun" bridge with no points or NGS, will try again next year.....!

Well done Patricia & David and Moira & Jim for winning (NS, EW)

A brief bit on the hands.....

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Bidding is right, play was not too bad but it doesn't make

Hand 3:   Ops hoped their partner's suit was s, it was mine!  An extra trick or 2

Hand 4:   Well done Ops, not many found the slam!

Hand 5:   I think partner should repeat her here but I could have passed the 1NT Double which I make +1, drat!

Hand 6:   Good defending here, Ops could have taken the finesse on trick 1 or played A then lost to my K to make this

Hand 7:   No  lead (requested in auction) so no  through me, 10 tricks made

Hand 8:   I should double here to get partner to bid s, sorry partner

Hand 10:   I play well sometimes and got everything right here - don't think partner should have raised me though.....!

Hand 12:   I could have doubled this but didn't want them escaping and it's Christmas!

Hand 15:   Ops should be in 4 but didn't bid after 2NT was bid as an overcall to my weak 2s

Hand 16:   Game bid by us, not by everyone - again, not sure partner should raise this but glad she did!

Hand 19:   I made the tricks I should, unlucky for Ops that not everyone did

Hand 21:   Ops should be in game, partner jumped to 3 so they didn't have room to find it

Hand 22:   Again, we are in game here but not everyone bid it

On to YHBC tonight after another visit to the Vet for Nemo (our cat and my profile picture).

14th December 2017


Playing with my life partner at the CBC Christmas Party!

We arrive as early as we can to help set-up and the room looks great and a wonderful spread.  Trophies presented and I have 3 that I am party to winning.

Val and the team (largely Margaret and Rosemary on the night with Vee and I helping from 17:30) did a superb job and Jerrold gave a warm appreciation speech at the end of the night (much deserved ladies!)

I am still not a fan of "proper bridge" after a party and still pushing for "fun" bridge with no points or NGS, will try again next year.....!

Well done Marie & Robin and Jane & Tim for winning (NS, EW)

A brief bit on the hands.....

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 8:   The wrong contract here but I don't know partner has 5s

Hand 9:   Slight mis-bid partner!!!  Our first hand and I open 2 and get a 2NT response (shows 9-11 balanced for us), not quite the hand that he had!!!  No problem though, it helped out Margaret B&W!

Hand 12:   Ops didn't find their best contract here and we defended well

Hand 14:   Unfair on Ops here, I bid and made what I should but others didn't

Hand 17:   Partner forgot the last trump.....!

Hand 21:   We kept Ops out of a slam but nobody bid it and some EW allowed dot play in s (I bid up to 4!!!)

Hand 26:   I was too ambitious here, should have passed 2, sorry partner

Finishing at 12 tomorrow so I can get to the next CBC party on time!

13th December 2017

Xmas Meal:

A big food day today!!!  Pizza lunch at work with the team and an early finish as Jane from work follows me home to see my cats, get changed and have a cuppa before the Xmas meal (a tradition).

I used the same quiz that we did for YHBC last week and went down well - the food was good and in huge quantities and had a few drinks and good banter too, nice!

Well done to Margaret, Lesley, Barbara & Val for winning the Committee Cup qualifier

Only 7 teams in the main group and 2 tables in the Improvers but it is getting close to Christmas now and also teams at this stage restricts the main group.

Marianne & Rosalie are making a run for the Improvers Cup now I see, good luck to them and the whole group!

CBC Xmas meal tomorrow night.....

12th December 2017


A good night tonight - had my eye test this afternoon and all is well which is a relief.

Played well with some sloppy patches but good overall and am definitely getting stronger.

Back to back games though and running around on every game with no breaks, shattered but good!  I didn't even get a chance to respond to emails in-between games tonight!

Saw one of my partners had a fantastic session at Ascot tonight, well done Chris*2 !!!

Works lunch and works Xmas party tomorrow, will undo all the calories burnt off tonight!!!

11th December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A cold night tonight and I slipped twice on my way to the car but stayed upright!  I still prefer the cold though and am just in Jeans and T-Shirt, a few people said they were cold just looking at me!!!

A nice evening tonight with a bit of luck but some hands I had no idea what to do with, a few others said the same!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Ops didn't find the s here but typically you prefer a major to a minor

Hand 5:   We were the only pair to find game here, well bid by partner though to take me out of 3NT as I only bid it based on her s!

Hand 7:   Well played Ops - they talked us out of our vulnerable game, I am not strong in points but am very strong with distribution - I think I should have bid 5s, drat!

Hand 11:   I played the s right here to make an extra trick

Hand 15:   Ops made the killing lead but then switched to a  - I'm safe in my contract but the switch gave the over tricks

Hand 16:   Delayed support from partner when I show 5 s - great bidding again partner

Hand 17:   A tough hand this, 4s is on but easy to go off in 3 (in my opinion) - I didn't put West with both honours so didn't make 4 but I got the s right and got the 9th trick back

Hand 22:   Steady defence here and a good lead

Hand 24:   A wild hand here and unlucky for Ops to find us with a void

My last Badminton session of the year tomorrow as have a Lady Rose match the following week.

10th December 2017

Social Cards:

A day at home today after doing the weekly shopping, looking at the weather, it was the ideal!

Our friends come round at 2pm and 6 of us play Poker.  Just socially, we only pay £5 each per game but still worth winning £30 so something to play for.

We had a few bottles of Proseco and various fizzy wines so decided to utilise some of those (got through 4 bottles between 4 of us!).

Take Away around 7pm too, a nice day!

I won 2 of the 4 games and a friend of ours won the other 2.  Vee did well in each game but not quite a win - he was in good shape before the food but I left to order it and when I came back he was out, can't leave him alone for 5 minutes!!!

I am feeling better now (though have 2 appointments this week to get things checked out) - I am feeling quite a bit over-weight though as have been comfort eating the last few weeks, need to ease off and start exercising more now!

Playing at CBC tomorrow

9th December 2017

Social Teams:

A busy day today!!!  I go to get my car MOT done at 8:30 (it passed!) as Vee goes with his family to a funeral.  Then have our house valued as thinking of moving (early stages though) and then off to Margarets to help with her laptop and phone.

From there it is on to our friends for social teams (12 of us).  As it is Christmas, we get a take away for us all tonight in the middle of the bridge.

Vee and I had a shaky start but a strong finish and came joint 2nd behind Tony and Sheila.  Vee only played 2 hands tonight but both were exceptional and big scores for us (3NT making vs 2NT -2 was brilliant!).

Friends here tomorrow for Poker and drinks

8th December 2017


Playing with my life partner at the YHBC 40th Anniversary and Christmas Party.

A lot of organising by the committee and helpers and it went off really well - no complaints and lots of great food and drink.

We arrived at 6pm to help set-up and get the hall ready, hard work but doesn't take long with all of us helping.

Everyone was laughing and chatting and having fun.

Vee and I wrote a fun quiz (links above and in the YHBC results and main menu) which went down well (just a conversation item really and a bit of fun) - we gave small bottles of wine to the winning team.

We had an amazing spread of food and a large (and delicious!!!!) cake with the 40th Anniversary on it.

A good raffle and fun bridge rounds off the evening and winners were David and Gordon and Norma and Irene - well done to them and to us all!

A busy day tomorrow with social Teams in the evening.

8th December 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with an regular partner in a regular club session that was also part of the Surrey Sim Pairs.

Was feeling a bit brighter today and booked appointments to get my eye and body checked out.

The Sims are on tonight too so no hands and details until later so will update this after the YHBC Christmas Party tonight!

We had a great session mostly with just a few lows, as a mild spoiler, look out for my hopeful 7NT I put partner in (the s didn't roll in but 6s would have made!) and partner passing my 2 level bid after she opened.......!  Still, not many errors and more than enough great bids and play from partner (and some from me!)

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:   We had a  to take here but Ops bid them so I didn't lead away from my KJxxx

Hand 5:   Tricky hand this, in the modern style, I opened 1NT and made 11 tricks - after partner invited, should I go up?  I chose not to and got a good score but I feel I should have gone up

Hand 6:   Ops miss-played this though we defended as well as we could am not sure it should have gone off

Hand 7:   With a bit of help from the Ops, partner played extremely well here to bring an impossible contract home!  She knew East was the danger hand and never let them in!

Hand 9:   My turn to make an impossible contract!  Saying that, most people did, in practice it is hard for Ops to find all their tricks - we were brave enough to bid it (though I said at the time it was 2.5 NT !!!

Hand 11:   Partner shines again making an extra trick!!! In pairs, the extra trick is key to winning and was proud of her on this hand - she bravely played the s correctly and Ops never took the A

Hand 13:   Odd here, we are the only pair to bid game, not fair on the Ops.  I have 18 with a 5 card suit so call it 19 balanced and open 2NT - those that don't value their hands this way won't find game I guess

Hand 14:   Ops played correctly here and played low on the first , they made the tricks they should but not everyone did - well played Ops

Hand 15:   I thought for ages here and eventually opened 4 - I don't meet the new strong 2 requirements but have a 5 loser hand so don't want to miss game.  Game is not on but it stops Ops finding 4 - as it happens, I played well and Ops ruffed the first , I think if they don't, I have to lose a  and the Ops K makes a natural trick

Hand 18:   Good defending here but Ops found the finesse and then didn't do it again for the 11th trick

Hand 19:   A phantom sacrifice by Ops here, unfortunate - that being said, I feel I would have had a shot at making 4

Hand 20:   Great defending by Ops to stop the over-trick here but we were in game which a lot were not, that was enough to get a good score here

Hand 21:   Aggghhhhhhhh!!!!!  I felt my s would come good here so didn't bid 6 which was my plan and bid 7NT after finding the key cards we needed - sorry partner, you didn't stand a chance here and my bad bidding not your play - I will ponder on the odds of my bid coming off at some point......

Car MOT tomorrow then having house valued as looking to make a start on moving house (after 11 years when we planned to be here 2 years!!!!) - then Social Teams with friends in the evening.

7th December 2017


Playing with an regular partner in a regular club session.

Was feeling a bit brighter tonight and just my right shoulder in a little discomfort.  Unfortunately, half way through the session I lost vision in my right eye - a bit disconcerting!  It came back by the end of the session but was tricky.  Not really an excuse but the hand it happened was a zero - I wasn't concentrating and mis-played the hand, sorry partner.  Other than that and 1 other hand where I thought I had 14 but now see it was 15 and so we missed game, it was a nice session and some great bids and defending from us both.  Both our declarer play is normally above average and it was tonight too.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Unlucky for the Ops here, only 9 tricks is possible and we pushed them up to 4 - others had poor defence and made 10 tricks, not their fault but well defended partner

Hand 2:   Well bid by partner jumping to 3 - Ops didn't feel they could bid after that and so we had a great sacrifice

Hand 5:   I couldn't see on this hand and played in some discomfort.  I got greedy and thought the was working and so didn't concentrate on the  suit - terrible and no excuse really

Hand 9:   Oh dear!  Sorry Ops but I think you may have got a little ambitious here, partner was quick with the red card, apologies Ops

Hand 10:   Same as hand 9 here but my turn to Double, sorry again

Hand 13:   Looks like a good contract here and well bid Ops, unfortunately it just can't make - glad we arrow switched here to be honest!  Not a good trump split and we took our tricks here plus some, Ops felt it would have been better not to draw the trumps and set-up the  suit

Hand 15:   I made an extra trick here which got us a good score.  I had a favourable lead which I got right and so only lost 1

Hand 18:   A wild hand here!!!!  We can make 6 as it happens but nobody bid it (fortunately) - had Ops bid 6 partner said she would have gone 6 as no defence to s - will settle for our score here though!

Hand 20:   A bit ambitious by a fine pair here - we quietly took it 2 off for a good score

Hand 22:   I thought I had 14 points here, definitely no excuses - I probably should valued it as 15 anyway with 5 good s (even if I did think it was 14) - sorry partner

Hand 23:   Partner played well here!  I doubled the 1 overcall to show s and after Ops supported the s she bid 3s - after 3 I bid 4 (meant as a sacrifice!!!).  Great play to discard both s making the extra trick!

Have decided to work at home tomorrow morning and book an eye appointment for early next week (means taking time off work but think I must, if not just to stop the well meaning nagging!) - I am concerned about my health but I have always had problems since birth, it just doesn't bother me as much it would others and these are not new issues really (just happening more frequently now).

Playing at CBC tomorrow afternoon then off to the YHBC Christmas Party (Ruby Anniversary too!)

6th December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session that is also part of the Surrey Sim Pairs.

Val hosted the Improvers as Keith and Vee took an Improver each.  They played the same hands as us so can compare with all Surrey (6 clubs) to see how they compare.  4 Tables again, we have a nice group here now, so pleased!

Jill and I had a good night but I made a few blunders including pulling the wrong card out on 1 hand!  Still, enjoyable and some good wins for the system as well as our play.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 3:   I made a balancing double here when the Ops stop in 2s, I am never keen to let Ops play in 2 of a major if I can help it.  We make our 2 too by the look of it so we really couldn't lose here.

Hand 4:   Ops gave me a trick at the end here, I put South in with the A and he returned a (a would have held me to 11 tricks)

Hand 5:   Great play by partner making 1 more trick than she should, only losing 1

Hand 8:   Ops didn't put the pressure on with the s, half not in game anyway though!  I hated my hand, 16 points but just 4 Aces and nothing above the 8 with a flat hand, partner had a nicer hand with only 10 points!

Hand 10:   Partner opened a but I decided my hand was worth nothing unless the came good - they did!!!  I am also not keen on leading partners suit when NT bid over it

Hand 12:   Partner made very few errors tonight but here I asked for a on trick 1 and a came back, we can do better here

Hand 14:   A blunder by me here, I should have bid 1NT but got carried away with s and hoped they would come good - they did not!!!  Over partners 2NT I should (having over-bid already) repeated my s

Hand 18:   A great sacrifice here, not many had a 5/4 overcall of 1NT (system wins!), partner even saved a trick here by putting South in who then freely played A setting up partners K

Hand 20:   Too ambitious here, sorry partner.  I should have passed the s - 2 hands tonight the s did me in!!!

Hand 21:   Great jump overcall here partner, brilliant sacrifice and hard for Ops to bid again after the 4 overcall!

Hand 22:   Another system win here - I open 2NT (19-20) and partner bids puppet stayman (looking for a 5 card major).  I say I have at least one 4 card major, partner says she has both majors and I pick my best.  Now asker can ask (as it should be) and we find the slam!  Well done partner, well done system!

Hand 24:   Bidding issues for Ops here and we were mean and punished - my 4 is a good contract but we cannot do better than this, sorry Ops.

Keep checking the Sim Pairs page (in the calendar and also linked in blue above)

Playing at CBC tomorrow.

5th December 2017


I am still suffering today, body is frustrating me now, hard to walk and my right arm still painful (no reason for either).  Fortunately, I play left handed so am still able to play.

I shouldn't have gone but with the help of deep heat, I was able to move and I played reasonably well all considered.  Still won quite a few games but was a wreck at the end and not able to walk home (a friend drove me home).

I am not as bad as it sounds to be fair and a lot of my friends are suffering far worse, will keep going and hope all gets back on track.

Sim Pairs again tomorrow as Vee hosts the Improvers.

4th December 2017


Playing with an irregular partner in a regular club session that is also part of the Surrey Sim Pairs.

My regular partner not feeling well and taken the wise decision to stay home and have an early night, get well soon Jo.

A partner I have played with a few times kindly agreed to come and play with short notice, thanks Mark!

Not our finest night however but some were simply unfortunate, better score when consolidated though (but only half the clubs in at time of writing).

Well done to Julie and Richard (currently top tonight but a long way to go yet).

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Our last round and the night had gone well, I felt I was keeping the bidding open but partner (correctly) took my double as penalties - still, leaving it in at the 1 level......  3NT on our way so not a good score!

Hand 2:   Made up for it here though with some superb defending.  Ops lost count of the s too though which helped but key was partner holding off on A to take the last 2 tricks.

Hand 9:   Partner was brave here playing away from Q trick 2, if Ops duck it they are home and dry, 1 off was a great score for us.

Hand 10:   Ops in the right contract and made the right number of tricks - unlucky for us!

Hand 11:   A wild hand here, I doubled the 3 opening, Ops bid 4 and partner bid 5!  I then bid 5 (my longest suit) and he jumped to 6!!!  Only 1 other in it, well done partner!

Hand 15:   Partner made the correct pairs play but it didn't work here - easier played by me too - just hard luck really

Hand 19:   Ambitious Ops and partner was on the ball and doubled, Ops did all they could here but we don't have game on so a good score for us

Hand 24:   I made an extra trick with the here, Ops lead the 10 during play and I guessed right by playing the Q - Ops made a friendly lead of the A which meant I got the other away, phew, played one well!

Hand 25:   Another of my classic doubles here!!!  Should have sacrificed in 5, when will I learn!

Keep checking the Sim Pairs page (in the calendar and also linked in blue above)

3rd December 2017

Social Bridge and Lunch:

Not well at all this morning and so have a long soak in the bath as Vee does the shopping on his own.

I feel a bit better as it is time to leave so all fine!

Margaret picked us and Dorothy up so we can have a few drinks and Val & Keith put on a huge lunch, hunters chicken lasagne (and a veggie lasagne for Vee) - lost of coleslaw, garlic bread, salad etc with a magnificent cheese board then gin jellies after!

Pivot Teams after lunch and our team have a poor start but fairly even after that, still not enough to catch up (in fact, we got further behind!!!) - great fun though and well done Val, Dorothy, Margaret and Sylvia!!!

Coffee and a nice chat after then home for a relaxing evening

Sim Pairs tomorrow night (extra table money reminder....!)

2nd December 2017

Badminton Christmas Meal:

Our first Christmas meal of 2017!

Vee and I take a friend of ours who plays at my badminton club to the Jolly Farmer in Alton for a 3 course meal and Skittles.

A great crowd, good food and banter and skittles before and after the meal.

A really fun night and we al enjoyed it!

Bridge 8 tomorrow at Val's with friends, should be good fun and Val is cooking us all lunch too, yum!

1st December 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

With Alan's holiday, not played together for a while so nice to renew our partnership!

Not our finest evening but still 3rd with only 51.9%!

Our play was not up to par (either of us) but great defending.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Whoops!  I tried to push the Ops up with my 3 bid (supporting partner) but they didn't bite, sorry partner

Hand 2:   We defended this well, I made another poor double and my heart sinks but Ops didn't finesse my K and partner made a great signal for a

Hand 8:   A step too far here though 1 pair made it - I got the right but still cannot avoid losing the other without them leading it (and I lost the first trick!)

Hand 10:   Too ambitious Ops, we couldn't quite double it but a good score nonetheless

Hand 15:   Ops should be in 3, we defended well here too with an incredible small  lead from partner on trick 2 putting Ops on a guess (which they got wrong)

Hand 17:   Good defending again here, Ops couldn't win here.  I got an extra trick by discarding a then exiting with a later on to make an extra trump by ruffing

Hand 18:   Not a great contract but trick 1 partner must play Q (law of restricted tricks), makes quite a difference.....

Hand 22:   I missed a trick here but the double saved our score!  I should have played a trick 4 rather then giving partner a ruff, I put him in a no win position, daft!

Our first Christmas party tomorrow with my Badminton Group (Skittles and a meal at the Jolly Farmer) - sorting out some YHBC admin at Alan' in the day too.

1st December 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A fun session and not many errors - partner played well throughout, a few wobbles by us both but felt good throughout and 10 tables again!

This was the first session of the new year so nice to start where we left off!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 7:   Partner opens 2NT and I bid puppet stayman.  Partner says 3 (showing 5) so we play in the right contract for a good score.

Hand 8:   This looks like a good contract in the bidding but not so, it favoured the cautious bidders!

Hand 10:   No  lead or switch, I lose a  early on and just scape home!

Hand 12:   No real way of knowing I think but I had to underled my A and then partner can get a ruff, hard to find

Hand 13:   This just worked, I wasn't alone in making the extra trick but a good score - had a nice lead and then West under-lead the K which I let run to my Q

Hand 14:   Tough for the Ops here as they cannot take their tricks without giving me tricks and I ended up making a long

Hand 16:   This contract doesn't stand a chance really but again, tricks just started to come and we all ignored the s and s!

Hand 19:   Ops bid strongly so it felt right to sacrifice, partner played it well and without the double, this was set for a good score

Hand 20:   A friendly lead here and partner made an impossible contract, well played partner!

Hand 22:   The timing of the A was key here, partner cannot play it on the first trick as they can run the suit, cannot hold up to the 3rd either as it would crash my J, perfect timing partner!

Hand 24:   Ops bid up to 4, I got a cheeky bid in early on and partner made a brilliant sacrifice of 5 (we don't have the defensive tricks), well bid partner - I made an extra trick too which got us a top but would be good even if 3 off

Playing again tonight after a quick curry (yesterday's leftovers!)

30th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Tonight was the last session of the Master Point Year (Runs December to November).  I beat the record last season and was unlikely to do it again - I needed 80 this week to equal.  On Monday I scored 50 by winning with Jo and so 30 needed tonight.........Barbara got me over the line (her declarer play was 91%!!!!!!!) as we won and scored 36 (beating the record by 6!!!!!).  A huge thank you to all my partners (mainly Margaret, Jo, Barbara, Jane and Nick).

I have spent some time today adding in a Trophies page for CBC (HERE) and also a Winners Summary (Current and Prior) which can be seen (HERE).  Have also added the Trophy info to each Competition in the menu.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Partner made a weak jump overcall and Ops supported his partner.  The level of the fit is 9 but I liked my hand so went to game.  Partner played this really well too and caught the singleton K and had a small gift of a  lead during play which she ducked to my Q

Hand 2:   Ops were too ambitious here but I mis-played this.  Towards the end, I ruffed with my master  when I should discard and let partner make her K, would have been 2 off then but still, a good score.

Hand 3:   I thought I had played this well but it says I missed a trick.  I think the only extra trick is playing a small  from my hand to the 6 in dummy (I am not doing that!) - we did well to stay out of NT and that gave us the good score.

Hand 4:   Partners brilliance tonight was marred by the defending of this hand - she needs to keep a to get to my hand and not keep a losing

Hand 10:   Ops didn't go to game here

Hand 11:   Ops open 1NT and I overcall a natural 2.  Ops double (meant as s but no agreement) and that is where I play.  one off is much better than the Ops in game!

Hand 14:   The only plus score on this board, well played partner!  A tricky contract as the don't break.

Hand 15:   Partner played this well but was also given a trick with a revoke.  Although this was completely correct and by the book, it is a rule I dislike intensely.  The revoke didn't gain or lose anything for either side and was completely irrelevant to the hand yet it gives us a trick.  I think the rule needs looking at personally but agree that rules are rules.

Hand 17:   Another one of my terrible doubles!!!  Although it says they can make 6, we would not have defeated the contract and no change to the score but, if I played low on the first trump and Ops said they would have ducked.  Partner then wins her singleton Q and I get a ruff.  I think partner could have shown me the 2 suits though with the UNT but fault here!

Hand 18:   Amazing play here, Ops can make 1 it says yet partner made 2!!!!  They didn't ruff when they could have and didn't draw trumps

Hand 21:   I over bid my hand here but had no defensive values against s so bid 5 over 5 - partner played well and it rolled in!

Hand 22:   We were both concentrating and defended well here, nice when we are in tune like this

Playing twice again tomorrow

29th November 2017


5 tables in the Improvers and a few visitors in the main group as Farnham is closed tonight.

Vee played with our newest member and some bidding issues need to be sorted by the sounds of it, will have a think here and try to offer some advice and assistance - unfortunately, I am tied up for the rest of this year now.

Val stepped up and directed the group, she is a real star and we are so grateful to have the amazing assistance of Val and Keith.

For us, a match at home:

A night of great and not so great bidding!

I gave my score card to our captain and shuffle and deal so only a "vague" commentary tonight!

In the first half we are generally good - just 1 hand from us where I bid weakly and partner looked for a slam and went for it - I needed the K on side and it wasn't, 1 off vs Ops making 650

We also defended 3NT superbly and took it 3 off (it can make but not easy).

A couple of games not bid by Ops that we bid between us and team mates and we claw back our defeated slam to be +7.

In the second half we missed a game (partner passed my jump to the 3 level, her ONLY bad bid of the night).

Team mates had a mis-understanding and played in 2 doubled -2.  An interesting hand as I played in 2 making!!!!  At our table Ops open 1NT, then stayman and I bid a cheeky 2 (5 to the 9 but our only chance of defeating 3NT is to establish this suit, I thought!!!!) - it gets passed out and I am now playing it, it wasn't easy but I made it, not a good score though.....!

As we score up, we see our lead evaporate quickly on the first 6 boards but it comes back with a slam by team mates not bid by our Ops and a game we bid that they didn't, phew!

Still 3rd overall but very tight now and very early days (especially for the 2 above us).

Playing at CBC tomorrow (I need 30 master points to beat my total from last year).

28th November 2017


I was not quite as bad as I thought tonight - my leg wasn't great but it was my arm that was worse!!!  Annoying, falling apart.

Still, I employed more skill than physical effort and won more than I lost, so not too bad.

We finally caught up with the Final of Mastrchef Australia tonight too (before Badminton) - unfortunately, we didn't agree with the choice of winner!!!  Still, they both did well and a great series.

BBL match tomorrow, we are 3rd and it is against the current leaders, not half way through yet so early days but fingers crossed for a win!

27th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Felt drained after the funeral today and not in the best of moods, partner kept nagging me in the first 8 hands too and I wasn't in the mood and snapped, not really partner's fault that I was in a mood - sorry partner.  I wasn't on sparkling form.  Fortunately, my bidding was and partner played well - we scraped a win out of the session but am sure neither of us enjoyed the night - perhaps I should have called it off as I wasn't in a cheerful mood.

We had a new pair tonight and it turned out to be a badminton player from my club!  Small world.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   Lucky here, I open a weak 2 in s (we can make game!) and Ops could have doubled but decided to jump to 5 - we don't double as this looks like a wild hand and we quietly take this off 4 - fortunately, nobody was allowed to play in 4 so we get a good score

Hand 6:   A tricky hand here - I was awake and bid up to a small slam - hard to get to 7NT though but again, fortunate that quite a number didn't bid the slam

Hand 8:   Not much on here and we push Ops up too high

Hand 11:   Ops too ambitious here and we capitalised

Hand 15:   Ops thought my overcall was weak when I jump bid, our system is intermediate and they didn't ask - they got a little funny when I said after I was quite strong but I cannot say anything during the auction or play

Hand 18:   A disagreement here, I think partner should quietly overcall 2 after weak 2 by Ops.  Partner cue bid 3 so I thought it was stronger and so I bid 5 over 4 - wrong but I think both of us were less than perfect here but obviously, my fault mostly

Hand 21:   Ops didn't bid game here, lucky for us

Hand 23:   Great play by partner here - she got the  right and didn't get forced in s

Hand 25:   My turn to play well here - a friendly lead though (a lead would be tricky) - I played on  first after trumps and found the doubleton Q so through a away on the 3rd C

Badminton tomorrow

27th November 2017 (Daytime)

Peggy's Funeral:

Vee and I took the day off today to attend Peggy's funeral with Margaret.

A lovely service with tributes from the family and wonderful spread at a nearby hotel after to help celebrate her life.

The family displayed photos, pictures of trophies, tributes and a map with all the countries scratched off that Peggy has visited.  She was a very well travelled lady!!!

Everyone had a story to tell and some of her own club were there too - Peggy felt so fondly of them and she loved to help people play and improve.

A sad day but also heart warming to hear of such a great lady who had an amazing mind and kind soul, will miss you Peggy.

26th November 2017

Social Bridge:

Playing with my life partner (Vee) with some good friends who wanted to treat us for our birthdays (a little late but the closest date we could all make!).

A lovely lunch prepared for us followed by rubber bridge (which was competitive and fun) - John won, Dorothy second, Vee 3rd and me last!

Lovely company and nice to catch up with them both too.

A relaxing evening planned now and off to Peggy's funeral tomorrow, a sad day but she was such an important lady in our lives and the bridge world, she deserves a good send off.

25th November 2017

Middlesex Swiss Pairs (GP):

A great run to the congress today, left 2 hours just in case and took just under an hour (same on the way back too!), thanks for driving Nick.

This is a well organised event with great directors and we enjoyed today.  We started off too well though and faced some tough Ops - generally, we were beaten on the matches we lost but we could have done better on a few too - still, 3/7 and 3/4 of a Green for the day.

Match Highlights:

Match 1 (Won 18-2):

Hand 2:   I got carried away here, we bid perfectly up to 4, I even announced Nick's exact shape when asked, yet I went on to a ridiculous contract, sorry partner

Hand 3:   Unfortunate here, nothing we can do and Ops can make 3NT but not many bid it!

Hand 5:   Brilliant defending here, we took a cold contract down - Ops need to establish the s by losing 1 early I think.

Hand 6:   This was the first hand we played!!!!  I was awake here and Ops jumped over me and partner supported my s - I ask for key cards and off we go - not that many bid it!

Hand 7:   Great lead here partner, slightly ambitious from Ops but we took a lot more tricks than we should here!

Match 2 (Won 14-6):

Hand 12:   Lots of South hands got carried away here but my parter listened when I passed!  We quietly took 4s off for a great score!

Hand 14:   Terrible play by me here - not sure how I made such a mess of this but I did, sorry partner

Match 3 (Lost 1-19):

Hand 16:   Ops in the right contract making the right number of tricks, well done Ops

Hand 18:   We made an extra trick here but Ops were in game when most were not

Hand 21:   I should double the UCB by Ops rather than bidding 3 with my awful hand - again, sorry partner, I put you in an impossible contract with no chance of profit

Match 4 (Lost 9-11):

Hand 23:   Partner made an extra trick here by getting a away, well done partner

Hand 27:   Partner opened this 3s so I had no idea there was a powerful hand there, I didn't feel I could bid on and we get a terrible (match losing score)

Match 5 (Won 18-2):

Hand 34:   We pushed the Ops up here and took it off

Match 6 (Lost 1-19):

Hand 39:   We cannot win here, it seems we need to be in NT but really, it shouldn't make and it would not have done against our Ops, partner did well to make 8 tricks here to be fair

Match 7 (Lost 7-13):

Hand 43:   I have a reasonable hand here but it is horrific as it happens!  lead and all is wrong, not good!

Hand 44:   Great sacrifice here and well bid and played partner - lucky Ops didn't bid 4 though....!

Hand 45:   Partner made an extra trick here by ruffing 2 s

Hand 48:   In retrospect, I don't think I should have overcalled here as half my points are a singleton K - still, this is terrible luck to have a 1 level bid doubled and left in for penalties - they have 6s on but it doesn't score as much as this!

Birthday bridge tomorrow with friends (a bit late I know - just the closest date we had to our birthdays!!!)

24th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in the Mixed Pairs event.

A tough session tonight, we had a tricky set this afternoon too.  I would normally play with Derek and Marjie with Rosemary - as it was the Mixed Pairs, I convinced Vee to come along with Marjie and I played with Margaret, Derek with Rosemary.  Well, we had one of our worst ever sessions but..............  WELL DONE VEE AND MARJIE !!!!!!!!!!

The first time they had ever played and they were the top mixed pair and win the Cup, so pleased for them!

Our hands speak for themselves - as always, not going through so many hands and best not to, we know what happened!  We definitely had some bad luck though and chased the nil hands through the Howell!  That said, we didn't make the most of the few hands we did get and I missed an Ace when sorting my hand too quickly so we missed our slam, drat!





Off to Middlesex tomorrow with Nick, hope we do a bit better than my performances today.

Oh, and once again:

WELL DONE VEE & MARJIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

24th November 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A tough session today with some really tricky hands - I made a mess of a lot of them too.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:    Ops in the right contract but we defended beautifully and were set to take this miles off.  Unfortunately, partner didn't return a  when she got in, instead took my K entry out

Hand 11:   I should have made this, I played for the J to be in the East hand

Hand 12:   Whoops!!!!  I was slightly ambitious here and went further off in trying to make it, no excuses but what a trump split!

Hand 13:   Good pass in the end but I was looking for 6, still we got away with it!

Hand 15:   I made an extra trick here as Ops played away from the K and I guessed right

Hand 19:   Ops made 12 tricks (as they should), not everyone else did!

Hand 20:   I was a bit ambitious but partner shone here to make a tricky contract, well played partner!

Hand 24:   I over valued my long suits here and put partner into an impossible contract, sorry partner

Taking both cats to the Vets in-between bridge and Pepper was a nightmare to get into the box, my hand is cut to shreds now!!!

Mixed Pairs event tonight at YHBC

23rd November 2017


Still not in the best of health but much improved.  Alan C drove us all tonight (a relief as I am not a fan of driving!).

We had a comfortable win tonight, a very good first half and an ok second half (a few issues but still increased our lead).

Margaret was on fire tonight, especially in the first half - well done partner!

We have consolidated 2nd place at present but not half way through yet and the leaders have only plated twice (we play them next week!)

As the Ops used a computer dealt set of hands, the hands we played can be seen HERE (I was North throughout)

A few highlights:

First Half:

Hand 2:   I make 2NT and team mates make 2s for a double +

Hand 3:   Partner makes a brilliant sacrifice (which I played and went 1 off) and team mates make a vulnerable game

Hand 4:   We pushed Ops up and they went 1 off, team mates made the same tricks but a level lower, a double +

Hand 5:   We missed a slam that we should have bid and team mates made a slight (1400) blunder - would have been ok if we had bid the slam though

Hand 6:   I make 3NT, Ops in a part score against team mates

Hand 12:   We defeat 3NT, team mates make it, a double +

Second Half:

Hand 17:   I make 2NT, team mates take 3NT off, a double +

Hand 18:   I punt a slam as I think we are losing our lead, it is there but very lucky!  Ops bailed out at 5s against team mates

Hand 20:   Partner made game here, Ops didn't bid it against team mates

Hand 21:   I defended like a loon here and let 3NT in, drat

Hand 22:   We were too ambitious and team mates had an unfortunate michaels bid that got them into a bad contract, a double negative

Hand 23:   We all made a mess of part scores here

Hand 24:   We made a slam that we didn't bid (again), fortunately, Ops were in the wrong game against team mates, a double +

Playing twice tomorrow, I would like to gain another 87 Master Points at CBC by the end of the month to beat my record from last year (bit hopeful though!), then Mixed Pairs at YHBC in the evening

22nd November 2017


Hosting the Improvers tonight and 4 tables in our section and 14 in the Main group!!!  A busy night and a little tight for space.

Keith and Val took an Improver each and Vee played with Ian N.

I have offered to help our newest member of the group and will analyse all their hands later tonight and e-mail him.

I had a few calls tonight but all about what to do with a strong hand after the Ops have opened - these vary depending on shape, points and honours in Ops suits - too much to go into here but worth looking up in a bridge book or online.

I cannot bring myself to discuss openly here but hand 7 is worth a look, a really WILD hand (made wilder with our group!).

Sold another 6 christmas party tickets tonight too, getting close now so hope a few more sign up (hint hint!)

I have a match tomorrow in Bracknell so an early start - we have a good team so am hopeful!


21st November 2017


I was not fit enough to play tonight, lots of Bridge admin done tonight though.  Had a half day too and started the Bridge admin this afternoon (as well as more real work that I possibly should have said no to!).

A nice evening with Vee and the cats tonight in-between e-mails etc and about to start writing a quiz for work and a quiz for YHBC Xmas party.

Hosting the Improvers with Vee tomorrow and also returning 2 trophies for CBC (which Vee kindly cleaned tonight) - I took a photo of him cleaning them and sent to Val without actually looking at the photo, it turns out it was not Vee in the best light!!!  Sorry Vee........

20th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A hectic day at work today but got everything done and came home for a radox bath as my leg is painful today.

Most things worked tonight and no real incident - just missed out but pleased for Diana and Max, especially as Diana was under the weather last week.

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Well defended by Ops here - I can't see how to make this unless you know the K is a singleton, bad luck partner.

Hand 3:   I have a history of bad doubles, this was another but I managed to get a  ruff in, phew!

Hand 7:   Partner jumped to 3 after my second suit was bid (agreeing the ) - I stopped for ages here and finally decided to bid game, a good decision but more luck than judgement perhaps.  Made an extra trick as East played the top two s first (the second falling under West's Ace), it made no difference though as we were the only pair to bid game.

Hand 12:   Not an easy contract here but partner made the maximum amount here by end playing East, great play partner!

Hand 14:   We stopped in the right place here, great judgement partner

Hand 15:   I had 14 points here but couldn't bid over 1, if I double I think I am showing 4 s and I can't overcall as no long suit, others didn't open in West which means I can open 1NT, bad luck here

Hand 16:   Slightly ambitious by Ops here, we get a good score but still had to defend it well to get it

Hand 24:     A helpful lead here and so I got a  away on the extra trick

Badminton tomorrow (health permitting!)

19th November 2017

Social Bridge:

Playing with my life partner (Vee) with some of our old Improvers group from when we first started playing.

Not as many of our friends as I thought, only 7 that we knew!  Marion has a lovely home and is a wonderful hostess and we had 5 tables playing socially.

Shuffle and deal each hand so no real comparisons and the totals are meaningless really, however, we did maximise our hands and had a score of 5,990 after 20 hands (3 times as many as the next pair!).

Just lucky though, the points are attracted to me sometimes and I welcome them!

We all supplied some food too (Vee made some lovely spiced potato, spinach and onion bhaji's) and we had a great meal and good conversation.

Vee wasn't that well today but nobody realised, he is such a trooper!  Home by 9pm and now relaxing and hope he gets well over-night.

A manic day at work scheduled for tomorrow then bridge at CBC in the evening.

18th November 2017

NICKO (Round 1):

Playing with Jill and Colin & David (Nick couldn't make this match).  We are Camberley "B" and near the end of the page on the link above.

An hours drive to Horsham bu no incidents for us.  Jill drove separately as she is not near us and 20 minutes closer - unfortunately, she got caught behind an accident and then her sat-nav broke!  Our hosts were superb here and he got into his car and found her then guided her to his house, the Ops were really friendly and also put on a fantastic spread at half time.

This is a Knockout event (National Inter Club Knock Out) so a win by 1 or 20 is the same, for what it is worth we won 19-1 but it was very close after the first 12 hands.

No hand records so this is just a simple summary and from memory:

First Half:

Hand 1:   We were cautious here and stopped in 3s (which Jill made), Ops went to game against David & Colin which they doubled, +9

Hand 3:   We took Ops off 2 here and team mates took Ops off too or a double swing, +5

Hand 4:   Ops stop in a part score (making 3), team mates bid and make game, +11

Hand 6:   I make 2 +1, team mates make 1NT, +6

Hand 8:   I am an idiot here, sacrificed in 5s for no possible upside (minus 800!), team mates did well to bring home +500 to soften the blow, -7

Hand 10:   Team mates went off in a game that can make but it is very tricky - our Ops did really well to make it, -12

Hand 12:   We defended poorly here, I discarded a  which I couldn't afford and so they got home, team mates rightly stayed in a part score so, -10

Second Half:

Hand 16:   We push the Ops too far and take it off, team mates made 1N+1, +6

Hand 18:   We defended really well here taking 2NT off 3, Ops made 2NT against team mates but not as much as 300, +5

Hand 19:   We push the Ops too far and take it off, team mates also take Ops off 2 vulnerable, +6

Hand 20:   Partner brings 3NT home (+1), team mates defend amazingly well to defeat 3NT at their table! +12

Hand 23:   We take 3NT off 4 and team mates make theirs +1, +14

Hand 24:   We stay in 4s and partner makes +1, Ops go to 5s but go one off, +5

Social bridge tomorrow in Ascot (5 tables, mainly the original Improvers Group from when we first started!)

17th November 2017


Playing with a different regular partner in a regular club session whilst Margaret is away.

I wasn't on sparkling form today and had a number of decisions - it felt like I got them all wrong!!!  Overall, it seemed to come good but not sure it should have done!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2:   Ops bid and agreed s but then went to 5 - unfortunate for them but thank you

Hand 6:   I should have supported the s even though I only had 2 but we got so lucky here, Ops never touched the s, phew!

Hand 7:   Ops bid well as 3NT makes, I doubled (penalties) and partner rightly took it out - not much in it if we leave them to 3NT but perhaps I shouldn't double and hope to take them off

Hand 8:   Lucky again here, Ops didn't touch s and played the Q freely setting up my tricks, as I was playing and bidding poorly today, all help appreciated.

Hand 10:   Balancing works here - I have a poor hand but 10 points so I keep quiet.  When Ops stop in 2s I double as we should be close to making something, it worked well here.

Hand 11:   This was our first hand and I felt it would be better in a suit so bid stayman in desperation - nothing worked and Ops defended well - not sure what the answer is here!

Hand 14:   Unfortunate here, Ops have 4s on but only 1 pair bid it other than at our table where we then made a good sacrifice - shame but not much we can do here, 300 was still better than 450 so the best we could do

Hand 16:   I opened this light but had 3 10's so upgraded the hand.  I was glad I did as we ended up in a good contract for a good score

Hand 17:   I paused 2 tricks from the end here for what seemed like forever, do they have a or a left....... I made the right decision and kept my to take the contract off, phew!

Hand 24:   Ops bid boldly and I don't know how strong partner is, we missed game and didn't double the Ops, drat!

No bridge tonight as off to a friend's sons 18th birthday party with Vee!

16th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in the John Warren Goblet Final.

We both played well again tonight, only one really bad board but that was enough to drop us to 2nd - well done Jill and Geoff!

Alan did really well tonight scoring both events on 1 laptop in 2 sections, we only do this once a year so it is not "the norm" and all ran well.  There was 1 small incident when our bridgepad wanted the other pair to sit out next but all worked.

Alan also scored the event with the blue points per the EBU rules and again, all worked well.

The Members Plate was won by Harry and Mike, well done both!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 8:   Not my doing here really, Ops can take the A but I got the timing right so they felt it would set-up the rest of the s in dummy so I made an extra trick as I didn't go back to the s.

Hand 11:   Ops had a mis-understanding over the strength of the double and so didn't find game.

Hand 13:   I gave a ruff and discard here, terrible!  They made the contract when nobody else did - this cost us the title too!

Hand 17:   I got the right here and Ops didn't get a  ruff so I just lost 1  and 2 s

Hand 18:    is the best contract here for the Ops but they tried NT and we defended well to defeat this.

Hand 19:   Just being in game was enough for a good score but partner made an extra trick by end playing North with the s - good play partner!

Playing with a different regular partner tomorrow as my usual partner is away until next week then to a colleagues son's 18th birthday party in the evening!

15th November 2017

Farnham BC:

Playing with a new partner in a regular club session.

I joined tonight so now a member of another club!

I started off poorly and 1 bad hand caused another - was so cross with myself.  I picked up a little though and ended up with 81% declarer play which helped us come top on our first outing, partner was a star throughout!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2: I was on the edge of bidding here, a point light but two 4 card majors, I do so much better to simply pass here - sorry partner

Hand 5: I had a plan here and played well - then I took the A in dummy before I had made the Q in my hand, no entry now to the winning s - I still make 12 but I took the finesse when it would have dropped, just a disaster!!!

Hand 6: No credit for me here, partner bid game and was the only one to do so, great judgement partner!

Hand 7:  We defended well here getting the  ruff in time

Hand 9:  Insanely good from partner here - Ops can make s yet partner made 1x - got the  right and used my to ruff with then end played Ops - well done partner!

Hand 11: I didn't get a lead so 12 tricks without much skill from me here - still, pleased with the result

Hand 12: We pushed Ops up just enough then a great double from partner!

Hand 15: I seem to be the only one making this, I made 1 more trick as Ops set-up the s for me.  They didn't touch the s which helped, now I just lose a and the 2 s.

Hand 16: We are in the right contract and partner played well - others got carried away in the auction it seems!

Hand 24: The only hand partner didn't play as well as she could but the error was mine in not insisting on my suit - we missed game let alone the slam and my poor bidding to blame here

Hand 25: Ops stopped bidding here so I was left to play in 2s - I cross ruffed the hand and made an extra trick here

Hand 27: Another hand where I did exactly what I should do yet it is a good result - can't complain though

John Warren Final tomorrow night at CBC

15th November 2017 (Afternoon)

SCBA Chairman's Lunch:

Playing with a regular partner in the Chairman's Lunch - representing YHBC in our Chairman's absence.

A nice lunch and well organised.  We were delayed getting there but made it with 1 minute to spare!!!

Some odd things happened at the bridge, wrong explanations, wrong cards played, dummy asking questions, Ops asking questions out of turn etc - still, it was a fun session and not too serious.

We didn't do very well but the main point was to help the County and I think we did that.  We discussed what we do at YHBC with the Improvers and entering county events and the joint Blue Pointed Swiss Pairs event - collaboration with other clubs and helping all to play and grow memberships (or at least keep stable).  A worthwhile discussion.

No analysis today but will say I was pleased to make 6x on 21 - good bidding and brave double Ops.....!

We played the boards in order (1 to 24) so you can see we started well and ended well!!!

Playing again tonight at Farnham with a strong partner but one I have not played with before.  Children in Need Sims at YHBC tonight too, good luck to all and hope we help raise a good sum for the charity.

14th November 2017


I was called a star today and then had an email that said "Ian, you rock - completely and utterly!" - I did a good job but nice to be appreciated!

Some work for CBC today and a few other bits and pieces then off to Badminton.

I seem to be consistently good now (not brilliant but respectable).  Have decided to start matches again soon and hoping to be a reserve next year and then part of a team next season.

Also starting to look at the club website (virtually non-existent today) this space!

A tough day tomorrow, Chairmans lunch at 11am so heading off at 10am to Bookham (representing YHBC as our Chairman away for a long birthday holiday).

Am then off to Farnham tonight to play with a partner I have never played with against a tough field!

13th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We both felt tired tonight and not at our best, I was terrible in fact!  Some tough hands but perhaps I made them tougher than they were!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 2: Although the matrix says they can make this, I think I should switch to a  trick 2 and it goes down, as others did - sorry partner

Hand 4: Odd here, I have a terrible hand that is also amazing!!!  I over-bid it is true but had no defensive tricks to 4 so felt it was right, the double was nice though!

Hand 6: Unlucky Ops, they took the decision not to win the first  trick, unfortunately, it was my only and I found the  switch, good defending though

Hand 9: Here it was a critical rough - trick 3 declarer sent a boy in and so we got the tricks before the s come in

Hand 10: A poor choice from me here - this was our last hand of the night and it was passed to me, I just had 3 Aces and no substance and only 4 s so I passed it out - how wrong this was, sorry partner

Hand 12: We were pushed too far here - better to leave them in 3s off 1 in retrospect

Hand 13: Ops in the right contract making exactly what they should - nobody else did though!

Hand 14: We missed 2 tricks here, would have taken this off - neither of us could quite play our unsupported honours though

Hand 16: I jumped here but partner couldn't quite raise it - nobody else could either and partner maximised the tricks for a good score

Hand 19: I pushed too far here - terrible decision from me - I had a nice hand but not a fantastic hand.  If I had just bid 4s we share a top instead of a zero

Hand 20: We missed a  trick here, drat!

Hand 21: We pushed the Ops too far here - we missed game though but fortunately nobody bid it and our score was above average

Hand 22: Over partner's weak 2 I think I have 8 tricks in my hand and hope for 1 from partner.  I was exactly right - Ops didn't believe me and doubled......... thank you Ops!

Badminton tomorrow.......

12th November 2017

2220 Bridge Weekend (4/4):

Playing with my life partner this weekend in Peggy's club weekend.

We have come 2nd in every session !!!!

Prize giving before lunch (Vee and I are quite quick at scoring!!!) and we got a couple of bottles each too which was nice (we won 1 pair and were given the other as a reward for scoring and directing, not needed but a nice touch!)

Don did a marvellous job of organising the people and we are hoping to arrange another weekend in May (hotel dates permitting).

A lovely weekend and hopefully a fitting tribute to Peggy who we all miss terribly - hope we did you proud.

An easy run home and all washing on and house in order - have updated CBC website with the 2018 calendar and booked B&B events for the club - now relaxing for the rest of the evening!

11th November 2017 (Evening)

2220 Bridge Weekend (3/4):

Playing with my life partner this weekend in Peggy's club weekend.

A little too much to drink today and a very hot room - this made me say more than I would normally, sorry partner.

I played well and partner could have done a little better - between us though we came joint 2nd - our club mates came top though, well done guys!  

Breakfast in the morning then 2 minutes silence for Rememberance as we play the fairwell session.

11th November 2017

2220 Bridge Weekend (2/4):

Our friends made it on time this morning (welcome Marion and John)!

A lovely breakfast this morning then a few of us start preparing the hands (shuffle and deal).

We have the movement right this time with the relay in the right place!!!

To accomodate 1 of the local players (who was asked to play when our numbers were different!), Vee agrees to play with them and I direct the session.

Last night, not many calls were made - today, 5 in the first 2 rounds!!!  Still, keeps me occupied!

Vee did well without me - 2nd again, well done

A nice walk after bridge then we have a large glass of red and John has a beer - then set to dealing the boards and laying out the bridge room - doesn't take long.

An hour to relax then dinner and back to bridge!

Afternoon off then playing tonight, 1 of us will likely sit out again but will take it in turns.

10th November 2017

2220 Bridge Weekend (1/4):

Playing with my life partner this weekend in Peggy's club weekend.

Due to the sad passing of Peggy last week, Don and I are running the weekend (we have a lot of issues to deal with already!!!).

We had a nice drive down, lovely pub lunch and arrived and prep done for the weekend.  Welcome drinks and canapes on arrival then a lovely meal and before we start play, a minutes silence for Peggy.

I have printed off a photo and tributes for Peggy too which are on display in the bridge room.

This is just a social weekend with no points or NGS and hands are shuffle and deal so no hand records but still....

We did ok, came 2nd with 61% - a few blunders by both of us but I was directing and laying out the boards - a lot to think about with people I don't know!

We did go wrong as we forgot the relay - sorted out in time though but it meant the boards were in the wrong order - nothing major but had to score from scratch on half the boards - an extra 3 minutes work!

Two sessions tomorrow.

9th November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in the John Warren Goblet Qualifier.

We both played well tonight, some errors (mainly mine) and some errors that worked in our favour!

Only 9 tables tonight and ideally, we have 14 pairs into the Final, we have decided to put the top 12 pairs through for a nice 6 table all play all final next week (a plate event will run for everyone else next week).

We qualified in 1st place tonight with a good score, fingers crossed for next week!

Val and Sylvia both out tonight for various reasons but the rest of us stepped up and arrived early and stayed late - we got it all done but miss them both when they are not there!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   I should not have opened this but it looked good to me so I did - I should not have made this but Ops didn't take the A so..... I did!

Hand 5:   So pleased that partner found a 1NT bid after my 1 opening.  I raise to game and only 2 pairs in it, played well too partner!

Hand 7:   I bid 1NT over Ops 1 and partner transfers me to my worst suit (always the way!) - still, it is the right contract.  I managed to get an extra trick on the  too

Hand 8:   Unlucky Ops, we put the pressure on with the defence and they didn't take the last trump out - if they had though, we then get in with the and run the

Hand 14:   I should have jumped in here but Ops opened 1 and I didn't know if partner would understand my bid.  We missed a trick in defence too by not leading s - 6 on for Ops but nobody bid it - all conspired against us here!!!

Hand 16:   I decided to open this 1NT (long minor and flat hand though 2 doubletons) - we found game here so it worked, am I right though?

Hand 19:   Partner opened 1 and Ops overcall 1 - I bid 1NT and then Ops bid 2 (passed out) - it felt wrong but couldn't work out what we could do!  It transpires that they hadn't seen (or registered) partners bid - we defended well and it was just unfortunate for the Ops

Hand 21:   Partner played safe here and let the first 2 s go - everything is right as it happens so 12 tricks on offer - I don't think it was wrong to play this way though, just bad luck

Hand 23:   Good squeezing by partner here and East was trapped - they discarded a so the suit runs for the extra trick

Hand 24:   Partner did well not to cover the Q here so the suit doesn't run and I claim the last 4 tricks (2 s and 2s)

Off to Worthing tomorrow for the weekend - will post summaries here each day.....

8th November 2017


Playing with a irregular partner in 4th of the YHBC Teams Series.

Two teams had shortfalls tonight due to illness or holiday and so we joined forces for a "fun" night!  The score won't count for the series but gets us all playing!

I play regularly with Jane Green but sometimes with her husband Tim, tonight renewed that pairing with some success (2nd on the X-Imps).

Vee hosted the Improvers (4 tables again!) with a new player who came last week to watch and after 1 lesson, he played tonight for real!  His bidding was not always sound and Vee helped and watched but he did well - welcome to the world of Bridge Spencer!!!

Great to see Angela and Colin win again tonight, well done!  Also, a special note to John and Delores who came 2nd tonight, they are doing well but not being rewarded with the rank, tonight they made it - well done!!!

In our team, both pairs performed well (we had some gifts along the way but earned some too!) - a nice evening and I tried to be on best behaviour (I was bad twice though and both times it cost!).

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   This hand shows the value of weak 2s, I open 2 here and Ops bid 2.  Partner raises to 3 and Ops bid 3 and pass out.  In teams, I think this has to be 4 (even Pairs to be fair).  Our pair bid game so a nice score for us.

Hand 2:   We had to defend well here and I am not sure I did!!!  I didn't read partner for a singleton  so returned a low - this didn't work at all!  I got it back later though by letting the 10 win and then claimed the last 3 s.  Team mates did well to double 1 for penalties too, a nice double plus!

Hand 3:   I over-bid here.  Partner bid 1, then 2 and after I bid 2NT (wrong!!!!) he had to bid 3 - when in hole, stop digging - sorry partner

Hand 4:   My luck was in here!  I opened 2NT (All pass).  Partner thinks 19 is not good enough for 2NT and perhaps he is right.  I played as well as I could and managed the lead and then won a in dummy and 2 s (half way there!).  I give up a to set up the other 2 but now I must lose lots of s and s - no, fortunately, Ops switched to a so I claimed my other 4 tricks and made the contract, phew!

Hand 10:   We were both a bit cautious here and found a double fit but didn't bid game - we both felt we were nearly good enough to but neither did - shame but cannot be helped.  Fortunately, our Team mates took 1NT off doubled for another double plus score - well done!

Hand 11:   We got in the way again here and I supported partner's weak 2 with only 2 cards, it cost a little in the defending and partner wasn't pleased with me but I feel we must try and stop Ops reaching game here.  I was right this time and our Team mates reached game (and made an over trick somehow!) - well done all.

Hand 12:   Another gift, Ops bid a new suit at the 3 level and were left there, game is on and our Team mates bid game again, bad luck Ops

Hand 15:   A pass out hand and we passed it out at our table.  Our Team mates were given a gift and took 2 2 off

Hand 26:   Well, between us, partner and I doubled 3 times and Ops never left the 1 level, never seen that before!  We did well to pass each time for penalties and Ops have nowhere to go - we defended well too - other than a freak result elsewhere where 3NT was allowed to make, this was a great score and a good score to take home to Team mates!

Playing with Jane Green tomorrow (a Green week!) in the John Warren qualifier - we are the current holders so wish us luck!

I have also been trying to sort out the Worthing weekend and John G and Marion said they would play, this is fantastic news and am so grateful - never simple though as another pair may have to pull out and I won't know until tomorrow, organising Bridge can be tricky!!!!

7th November 2017


A tough day today, my right eye was painful all day and hard to see out of.  So much work to do and pressure of deadlines so had to make it work.  I gave up around 3pm and came home, still logged on though and had a final meeting at 17:30 with my Boss ready for tomorrows meetings.

The weather was lousy too and everything pointed to staying home, but............   I have eaten a lot recently and missed Badminton last week, so I had to go.

When I got there I was glad I did, everything worked, I moved really well and my shots were great - 4 different people commented on me being a demon or on fire!!!

I didn't win all my games but most and the games lost were close - I ran out of energy towards the end though but felt good for going!

Caught up with a few CBC emails too.

Tried to find a pair for this weekend today too as a pair has pulled out, it is such a nice hotel, great food and good location in Worthing at the Ardington Hotel but no takers (some interest but not free at this short notice).  Shame but cannot be helped.

Playing in a scratch team tomorrow at YHBC but a strong team!  Vee hosting the Improvers.

6th November 2017

Our Birthday Meal (3/3)!:

Home and a quick coffee and change then off to CBC to help set-up for the AGM at 6pm for 7pm start.

We helped set-up tonight and all went smoothly, no incidents and no major AGM items other than a change of the committee, welcome Moira to the crew and welcome to the top job Val with Geoff taking over from Val as Secretary.

It is Vee's 40th today - HAPPY BIRTHDAY VEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!

As it is Vee's birthday, we are being taken out to a lovely Italian tonight in Bagshot (thanks Jo and Margaret!!!) - ate far too much but great food and awesome company.

Back to Jo's for coffee after then back home - a lovely night and Vee enjoyed himself which is the main thing, what lovely friends we have!

After almost a week of non-stop food and champagne, back to badminton tomorrow!!!

5th November 2017

Our Birthday Meal (2/3)!:

A games day today!

After morning chores, Vee does Tesco as I prepare the board game and play with my friend Martin.  We have both been playing online too and he is getting much better - he played very well today and beat me over a close game - well played!

Then friends over for Bridge at 2pm, playing with Andrew (who has played at YHBC a few times) and Vee played with Jim (probably the strongest player from our friends).

They are ahead all the way through until 18 hands in...... I take a flyer and open 4s - as you may expect, my hand is not worth 4s!!!  Vee has a massive hand and doubled, rightly so.

My hand was along the lines of KQJxx in s, KJxxx in s, single  and xx in s - dummy has 4 s, Kx in s and Jxx in s and xxxx in s - Basically, I cannot make this!

I have lost 3 tricks and play a few winners and Vee has the A to take - I play small to the K and Vee goes onto auto pilot and plays low (2nd player plays low), the K holds and I throw the last in dummy on a to make the contract!  Sorry Vee.  This then turns our fortune around and we win narrowly over 24 hands.

It really isn't the result though, we had great fun and very few errors between the 4 of us.

We then have less than a hour until my Dad picks us up to take us out to dinner (menu on the link in purple above).  A lovely meal and my Dad treats us too - very nice!

Now catching up with Strictly results and opening the joint cards we have (Vee's birthday tomorrow....).

Some more really lovely cards and one signed by most of the Improvers, a lovely card too with "Happy Bridgeday" and cards on the front, so kind and we thank you all so much - a truly lovely group and we are both so fond of them all - especially as the bridge quality is rising week after week, a smashing group!

CBC AGM tomorrow night and getting there around 6pm to help set up etc but not staying for the bridge after as we are being taken out for yet another meal!!!!

4th November 2017

Our Birthday Meal (1/3)!:

A day of catching up with TV today, nice and relaxed and being picked up just after 7pm to go for a Thai Meal.

The menu is in the link at the top, a lovely Thai place in Farnham with 14 of us (various set-menu's).

Fantastic food, great company and a fitting celebration of our birthday's!  Nice to both be able to have a few drinks too!

Games tomorrow (board game first then social bridge with our friends) then my Dad is taking us out for our 2nd birthday meal in Fleet.....!

3rd November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Not a good session today but it started with some devastating news that our friend, Peggy Griffin, passed away yesterday at the age of 92.  She was a devoted Mother to 3 daughters and all 3 were with her at the end.

As a mark of respect, I am not going through today's session.

Peggy was a remarkable lady, a true matriarch - fiercely intelligent, wonderfully kind and an incredibly witty and warm personality.

Peggy has served for Bridge for many decades and was awarded the Dimmie Fleming award from the EBU for long service (Biography HERE).

A tribute has also been placed on the Surrey home page HERE.

During her bridge career, Peggy has won many events as part of a pair or team and organised many Surrey events, leagues and assisted with many large tournament (notably the Surrey Congress).  She was involved in some high powered bridge as well as running a lovely and friendly bridge club (still involved in running it until very recently).  Peggy started to organise weekend away for her club 2 years ago too (an amazing first for her at the age of 91!) and the next of these is next weekend.  I had already offered to assist her this time and when her health deteriorated she asked for the weekend to go ahead if I could take over the bridge organising, I was happy to say yes and help - it will be tinged with sadness now but hopefully a fitting tribute to one of the most incredible ladies I have ever known.

Peggy will be missed by so many people (including her large family) and leaves a very large hole in the Bridge community and in my own life.

We will be raising a glass to you tonight Peggy and will think of you often, rest in peace.

2nd November 2017

My Birthday!:

Well, it has finally arrived, I am not a young man any more!  Day off today and although I was up early, I then went back to bed and had a lay in until 9am!!!

Had a nice relaxing day although I did some cleaning and hoovering but not too much.  Have a new Fridge Freezer coming in the morning so also have to clear that!

Pizza tonight and TV with Champagne and Vee, lovely !

Lots and lots of cards, bottles and gifts and have picked on scones and cake throughout the day too - no badminton this week either so will be a stone heavier by next week!

My team were 4th in the final of the Chairmans Shield but they scored well and played well.  Results HERE

Playing at CBC tomorrow afternoon and then either relating at home or may play with Vee at YHBC in the evening

1st November 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Birthday season now under way and I didn't end my 30s well!  Apologies partner, you had a complete beginner opposite you tonight.

Lots of card tonight and some wine and bubbles and gifts - such a lovely club and great friends - nice home made scones from Margaret B too, thank you all so much!

Alan's birthday today, mine tomorrow, Vee's on Monday - Alan & Pamela go away for most of November Friday morning so it is Marjie and I for a while taking the reigns of YHBC!

Our team in action in the BBL tonight too - our team won against a strong team 12-8, well done Team!!! - Division 2 table HERE

Vee hosted the Improvers tonight and 3 tables plus a visitor who is keen to play Bridge but has never played before.  Vee talked him through what was going on and how it all worked and gave him June's details for lessons and advice.  Val and Margaret B helped too and all went smoothly.  Chris and Carole back on top tonight, well done girls - see you in the main group again soon?!!!

Our night:

Hand 3:  I pounced on the Ops error here and felt a little bad for doing so.  Ops made a free bid with only 2 points and so they ended up in game when they shouldn't be - apologies for doubling though

Hand 4:  I felt at the time we had not defended well here but it seems the Ops are in the right contract and it is other tables not doing as they should or letting us play in 3s

Hand 10:  I got some luck for a change here and Ops didn't find the  ruff so I lost the 3 Aces and made the rest, phew!

Hand 11:  I should pass 3s here, if Ops bid 3s so be it but I was far to ambitious to try 3NT, sorry partner, no excuses really!

Hand 12:  Leb to the rescue here!  Partner bid 2NT over the Ops bid which asks me to bid 3 initially.  This pushes Ops up to 3s and we quietly defeat this - makes up for the first board!

Hand 16:  Club bridge!!!!!!  Our Ops bid and make 7NT and it is cold, only 4 others did this and one went off, not much we can do here

Hand 19:  Partner played so well here!  Ignored the s and switched between s and s and losing the first before Ops have set up any tricks was key, well played partner!

Hand 21:  I got carried away here - partner jumped to 5 and I hold more than I have said so jumped to 6NT - 6 seems to be the top but not sure about this, I should have raised to 6s though, sorry partner

Hand 23:  I didn't know what to do with this hand!  Even if I had made this (as some did) we wouldn't have got a good score - I just couldn't think clearly tonight

Hand 26:  I got the hand layout all wrong here, didn't picture the doubleton from the lead and then got everything wrong - sorry partner, awful play by me

Day off tomorrow and seeing friends for lunch and drinks then champagne and take away at home with Vee - a relaxing birthday!

31st October 2017

Chairmans Birthday!:

Our chairman, friend and soon to be Octogenarian, Alan Brown hosted a drinks and nibbles night tonight at the bar by the club

A good turn out to help celebrate this milestone event and Alan and Pamela put on a great spread of food and wine with a tab at the bar too - lovely to chat to people rather than just doing battle with cards and a great story of "Alan the early years" too!

Alan can count all of the club as friends and some of us, very close - he does such a lot and invests so much time in the pursuit of Bridge (be it helping Improvers, regular players or just keeping the club foundations solid) - he really is a credit to the game and am lucky enough to count him as a friend.

CHEERS Alan and Happy Birthday!!!

Tomorrow was due to be a blue point event but I must confess, I got this wrong and the EBU won't allow it unless we play 36 boards or more (can be over 2 to 3 sessions).  Will have another think about this and advise when we can do a major competition for this.

30th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Vee home from India today so was nice to have him home when I got back from work, he made dinner too so I could relax!

A nice evening tonight with a couple of blunders but mostly good - partner was on very good form tonight (until the last hand but that was a simple error and not an issue).

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:   A competitive auction and hard to know who was sacrificing (if anyone!).  We have 4 on but Ops bid 5 - I am sure this is going down but can't cope with 5 so don't double in case they rescue.  As it turned out, not many were left in 4 and so we had a good score for taking them off

Hand 3:   Partner shines here - I don't think I have enough to bid after 1NT so that's where we play, everyone else agreed so it came down to the play and partner was better than everyone else here.  The lead was helpful, a  lead could have been much tougher

Hand 9:   I opened light here and soon regretted it when I was doubled and it was not rescued.  Partners hand was exactly what I needed though and the double told me where most of the points were - contract made!

Hand 10:   It seems I am better not to bid here, I perhaps got blinded with my points, it says I cannot make this but I got the right and should have made it, until I had forgotten I had got the right!  Sorry partner

Hand 16:   I should have passed here rather than raising partners s, the double was unfortunate too but wouldn't have improved the score much without it - sorry partner

Hand 17:   Partner shines again!  She got the right and squeezed he Ops to make all 3 s too

Hand 18:   Michaels went wrong here!  Partner said she had the majors but it was s and s, with my hand I jumped to 4 - I did well to make 8 tricks I think but I cannot make this!  No harm done, it buys me credit for 1 of my errors!

Hand 19:   Ops defended perfectly here, there wasn't anything to be done here - some did make it but it is not there - bad luck partner

Hand 21:   I played well here to only lose 1, 1 and 1 - I didn't try the finesse for the 2nd time but played on the s to throw the away

Hand 24:   We were pushed too high here but partner made it!  Losing a gained a trick for the 9th, great play!

Birthday drinks and nibbles tomorrow for Alan Brown (YHBC Chairman and friend) so no badminton

28th / 29th October 2017

YCBC 24 Hour Bridge Marathon:

Playing with a regular partner in the 50th Anniversary 24 Hour Bridge Marathon.

This really was a marathon!

Collected at 10:45 and arrive at 11:45, settle in and then 6 sessions (3.5 hours each) of 27 boards (3 rounds of 9).

Far too many hands to review but will do personally offline!

We didn't shine but the strength of the field averaged at 60% and we made a few blunders.  Largely, we just couldn't compete with the type of bridge we faced.

Really enjoyed it though and survived the slog too!

In each session, we got 40 - 44% and were around 2nd from last (consistent!)

The last session was better though and we were running at 57% but had a few bad boards towards the end and finished half way just under 50% (a creditable performance really!).

Overall, 2nd from bottom - had some great banter though and all lovely people (apart from 1 pair - we even had a ruling against them which they appealed then we won the appeal - how pointless on such an event!).

Lots of competitive auctions and high level sacrifices - some great low level contracts scoring well too.  So many "fancy" gadgets came up (from us and our Ops).

Truly, a fantastic experience and Simon and I got on well throughout too which was nice.  Los of coffee, coke and food.....

At the end of each session, the club catered - buffet dinner after session 2, hot dogs at midnight, soup and garlic bread at 4am, bacon and egg sandwiches at 7am and a free drink at the end - all marvellous!

I am not sure if I would recommend this to many of you but I would definitely do it again - shame we didn't score better but it was the experience that made it worth it - I can say I have done it at least!!!

Towards the end I did start to feel the pain a little - I had 1 hand where I was trying so hard to concentrate that I hadn't noticed the Ops bid!!!!  I went to bid and then saw - they were so kind and let me bid whatever I liked - felt a bit guilty when we got a top board but we did actually bid it honestly and they agreed, it ws all fine!

Links to sessions:

Session Ranking Our Scores Highlights
Noon to 3.30pm Click Click 2  -  4  -  7  -  21  - 27
4pm to 7.30pm Click Click 8  - 9  - 11  -  14
8.30pm to midnight Click Click 7  -  9  -  10  -  22
0.30am to 3am
(Clocks Back)
Click Click 2  -  8  -  11  -  20  -  25
3.30m to 7am Click Click 2  -  3  -  14  -  27
7.30am to Noon Click Click 3  -  14  -  19
Overall Click


Back to normal tomorrow at CBC to start the birthday season for my household and YHBC.....

27th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A poor placing but not the worst score, all fairly close but we were at the wrong end of close!!!

Not a big turn out tonight and so fewer scores to compare against, the Ops seemed to come to life against us though but we did mess up on our own as well!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 8:   We got a bit carried away here!  Partner started off playing well though but the Ops fooled him with the s, the K played on the first go and then Ace will crash the Q, of course, partner finessed!  He would have made 3NT if that had gone well though as had a  trick already and then 5 s and 3 s - bad luck partner.

Hand 10:   I should have kept my 4th here but didn't.  As it happens, holding it to 12 wouldn't have been good either as most other tables didn't make 12!!!

Hand 14:   My fault here but I maintain that partner should have doubled 4s - I know he doesn't have many points but with my aggressive 3 bid, I surely will sacrifice over 4s?  Even if it makes, it has to be better than letting me do what I did - perhaps I am wrong though, either way, sorry partner!

Hand 16:   Good double here from partner though - we may have missed a trick somewhere it seems but the double made up for it!  It was worth pushing them up after all and I take it all back partner!

Hand 17:   A bit of luck for us for a change!  Ops didn't find game and we held them to 11 tricks too with the switch on trick 2,  well done partner!

Hand 18:   I didn't realise partner had a void and didn't fancy leading away from K, hard to see but again, I guess this is my fault

Hand 21:   A low level contract but I played well to make it - good restraint shown by us both here to stay in a low level contract.

Will try to get an early night tonight as playing for 24 hours tomorrow at noon (being picked up at 10:30) - this really will be a marathon so wish us luck!!!

27th October 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Another fun session without incident.  We didn't think we had started too well but some early scores improved and we were leading going into the last round.  Unfortunately, I messed up the middle hand and our main rivals finished strongly, still - 2nd with a good score.

Good to see Sylvia and Linda in the 50s today too, well done girls!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 5:    I think partner needs to bid her s here after transferring me (and yes, I opened this 1NT as I had no good re-bid - I should have opened 1 though and re-bid 1NT after partner calls 1 - silly Ian!).  I got the s wrong anyway and made a mess of the play so it was doomed anyway!  Sorry partner.

Hand 9:    We pushed Ops 1 too high here but managed to get an extra trick as Ops lost count of the trumps and partner managed to get a ruff in.

Hand 11:    We pushed again here and I was then a bit mean to double.  We do make our 4s but Ops would have done better to leave us there.

Hand 13:    I think we are right to be in this but it cannot make - I showed 15/16 and partner has 10, why not - of course, everything is wrong and it is just not there!

Hand 17:    Poor Ops here, West bid her hand twice and I was mean again to double here, sorry Ops

Hand 18:    I played well here as we had been pushed too high - at the time it was not a good board for us though as our friends were in 4 doubled +1 and that scores more!!!

Hand 20:    This is another good contract that cannot make.  I think partner stands a chance if she ruffs a but Ops can win the 2nd and then take 2 trumps out, it is doomed then too - bad luck partner

Hand 21:    We got our revenge here though, Ops were left in 1 and I have close to an opening hand with 5 good S!!! In fact, it says I can make 1 and I guess we did!

Hand 22:    We were in a pushy mood today and pushed the Ops up again here - they played it really well too but unfortunately, we pushed them too far

Hand 26:    It says I cannot make this and 2 others only made 9 tricks too, it seemed straight forward at the time.  Ops ruffed the 3rd and so the trumps fall as now 2/2 - perhaps if they don't ruff it is harder.  That being said, I should have lost 2 s but I won the first trick with my J and then lost the K and threw one on the A and ruffed the other.

A quick bite to eat now and then back to Bridge at YHBC tonight

26th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We finished 4th with a reasonable score.  So pleased to see my other partner win though with my Team captain - go Margarets!!!  We definitely helped them win though, see Hands 5/6 below....!!!

I messed up the first 2 hands and partner could have done better on the last 2 - the middle part was reasonably good though.  I stated we were going to get 8 100% hands in a row and we actually came close to doing it!

A fun night and good score, shame we couldn't remove the start and end but hey!

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 1:    I think partner had a moment here (this was our last round).  It's tough, but I think trick 1 needs to be small to the Ace and then 12 tricks are on - good defending though, they fooled partner into thinking the J was in E - it happens

Hand 2:    Again, partner could have done better transferring me to s here, shame but again, no problem

Hand 5:    I forgot we were 21/22 for 2NT so partner thought I had more points - totally my fault.  I actually have a chance at making this but not on a  lead.  Sorry partner

Hand 6:    I should have taken my A here before playing the 2nd - drat, I just couldn't see they would have a singleton - partner said she could and shouldn't have encouraged the either, maybe both to blame here!

Hand 7:    I decided to open this 1NT with a flat 15 and no nice re-bid (most of you will disapprove but if I can't re-bid I don't like to open).  Partner transferred to s and now I am happy!  I bid game straight away and 11 tricks are a lay down after catching the singleton K.  With restricted entries to dummy, I felt I had no real choice but to play my Ace and hope.

Hand 8:    I know we missed 7s here but I think I played this well.  I ran all the s which squeezed the Ops - they both threw s and so when I played the 2nd , everything crashed down and 13 tricks made!

Hand 13:  Really great defending here - we got everything right here and even the last trick, partner set-up my last and so I won that and my last - well done partner!

Hand 14:  Great play from partner here setting up the long on the way to make the extra trick!  I was also quietly pleased with myself for passing 2s (I wanted to bid 3 but restrained myself - a rare event!)

Hand 21:  Great play again from partner here setting up the long (Again!!!)

Hand 24:  Amazing restraint from partner here to not bid or double (they will rescue if she does) - defended well too.

Playing twice again tomorrow.

25th October 2017


My cold has now left which is a relief, just ache a little from 10 days of suffering!

Hosting the Improvers tonight and 4 tables in our section (with 1 pair playing in the main group) and 151/2 in the Main group!!!  A busy night and a little tight for space.

Keith played (and won!) and Val and I hosted.  I manly helped Angela sort and play the cards (at her direction) and Val hovered and assisted.  It worked well.

No real incidents tonight and not much help needed, the group is progressing well and it is now confidence and speed we need to work on.

Despite my previous comment, it is worth noting that none of the 15 hands were flat!!!  Something different at each table on every hand......!

24th October 2017


Day off today to try and clear this cold and recover, still had work e-mails on all day so I don't get behind!

Done lots of Bridge work and analysis with my partner over the Reading hands (all 111 !!!)

KFC tonight as a treat with my lodger then off to Badminton.

I played well tonight and lost 2 close games and won the rest - sorted out our Christmas meal choices and paid deposit too, it's nearly Christmas, have 9 parties confirmed now (4 of them Bridge!!!)

Hosting the Improvers tomorrow (with Val and Keith's help).

23rd October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in final of the CBC Monday Championships

Going into the final, Jo and I were leading by 6% over 2nd and 10% over 3rd place.

With Colin away, the threat was only really from Joyce & Lesley (a formidable pair) - they needed to get a score above 64% to overtake us and for us not to improve our lowest score of 52.72%

The wildcard threat is Tricia and Margaret who started late this year but are doing well, they need 70% to overtake us though.

A really tough night tonight, I was not on good form and kept making the wrong decision.  Fortunately, Jo was really good tonight and we had some nice scores along the way to finish 3rd with 55% - it was enough to hold on to our lead too, we have finally won the Championships!!!  Really pleased (I know pride is a sin, apologies).

Roll of Honour can be seen  HERE

The 2 pairs who could beat us both did well tonight too, Tricia and Margaret scored 65% which is a fantastic score, not quite enough though (and we improved our score by 3% too)

Tonight's hands.......

The Highs and Lows:

Hand 5:  I was ambitious here but just felt we had too much to settle for game - I was kind of right but partner has to crash the K rather than finesse it, not many of us would do that and only 1 pair did it - sorry partner, I was too pushy

Hand 7:  I am too ambitious again here and hate to settle for a part score - I made a number of poor decisions tonight and this was one of them!!!  3NT doesn't stand a chance and I went off more trying to make it - should have settled for 4

Hand 10:  I felt so bad here, the youngest player at the club who is a strong player but looks a little nervous to me.  I want to encourage him and last week he found the only way to make a slam against us.  Tonight though, he found almost the only way not to make it - he over thought the play and muttered "what are the chance of   there" - of course, I did only have 1 and so ruffed the second.  He did really well to bid it though, nobody else did!  At club level though, you rarely need to bid a grand slam, 6+1 is normally a great score.

Hand 11:  I got 1 decision right here!  A competitive auction and partner bid 3 freely - I can place at least 8 points and long s so am hopeful for more than 3 - I bid 3NT and get the s right.

Hand 12:  I turned a top into a bottom here.  Ops were set to play in 3s and then me...... I should pass but got carried away and bid 4 - got doubled and poor score - 3s +2 would have been 100% for us!!!

Hand 13:  Good defending here - we took the first 2 s then a great switch from partner (setting up a trick).  Ops play s next and so I get a ruff, a and A - I didn't need the ruff if they draw trumps.

Hand 15:  I had a little help here - Ops played A (good lead) but then played the K which set up my Q.  If they switch to anything else, I have to play the myself and can only make 8 tricks.

Hand 20:  I open 3 here and partner had the choice of 3NT or 4 - she chose 3NT and played it well, it helped that the Ops didn't find the switch though!

Hand 21:  I did nothing special here, in fact, the matrix says I should make 11 (but hard to get the right here) - just lucky that other tables didn't do the right thing

Hand 23:  Unfortunate for Ops here, they led a trump and so didn't get the momentum and partner capitalised and got the right too - 11 tricks when only 9 available though, well played partner!

Hand 25:  Partner could only see 8 tricks here but tried to make it.  Ops did not help at all and it couldn't be done.  Some did though and others settled for the 8 tricks.  Partner got the right and made all 4 but we need to make 2 s or 2 s and very hard to see how.  Some form of end play on West needed I think but even seeing all 4 hands it is hard!

My cold is still not gone but not too bad now - aiming to play badminton tomorrow to sweat out the rest of it!

22nd October 2017

Day Off:

After 111 hands of bridge over the last 2 days, then writing about it (though limited to just the dark reds and dark greens), no bridge today!!!

Day off - this takes the form of:

6am - Feed cats and first load of washing on.

7:30am - Washing into drier and next load on followed by catching up with work I missed on Friday

9:15am - Go to Tesco for shopping, our kettle and Toastie maker broke this week so need to replace those, also, Vee away so meals this week are finest prepared meals, Fillet Steaks and Chicken (simple!) - expensive shop though

10:45 - I go to my friend John's, he is having trouble with his Laptop and iPad and I fix all 5 issue for him and have a coffee and a nice chat

12:15 - Get home and have lunch (Chicken Soup)

12:45 - My friend comes over to play board games (he won)

A few hours to rest now then out to dinner with my lodgers

Tomorrow is another tough day at work when 3 reporting cycles collide, then playing in the last of the Monday Championship series, we are still leading but it is very tight, we need to get a score of around 60% to secure the title (we have finished 2nd the last 3 years!!!).

21st October 2017 (Evening)

EBU Autumn Congress - "B" Final Session 2:

Playing with a regular partner in the EBU's Autumn Congress.

Our worst session of the event to finish I'm afraid, a combination of being in the wrong contract a few times, lack of points and strong Ops - still, didn't quite finish last overall.

Our commentary (Click the "Hand X" to view the hand):

Session 2: (37.80%)

Hand 2:  I got the  finesse wrong here and it drops too, drat!

Hand 3:  I am not sure who was wrong here but one of us needs to bid 4, probably my fault though

Hand 4:  Ops opened 3, I bid 3 and partner passed.  Not unreasonable as we had no room to investigate but we need to be in 3NT!

Hand 5:  I had a tough decision here, partner doubled Ops 4 bid but we are vulnerable, if 5s makes we need to be in it as looks doubtful we can take s off enough.  I made the right choice and partner brought the s home for a great score!

Hand 10:  I had a choice of or  lead, I went the wrong way, drat again!

Hand 11:  Ops a little pushy here and although they stayed low in the end, we took them 1 off (as we should)

Hand 16:  Partner called for a , I have to therefore play the small  - Ops won with the 6 and we lost momentum, slight lack of concentration by partner but it has been a long 2 days!

Hand 21:  I have had so many hands where I have gone to game and gone off I passed partners raise - wrong decision, made 11 tricks

Hand 24:  Ops played the s very well, I got the  wrong and didn't continue the , lots of ways to make this and didn't find any of them - fatigue setting in though.....

Hand 25:  Partner kept her s and declarer had to concede in the end, well done partner!

Hand 26:  Partner got the  wrong here, it is a guess though - played brilliantly other than that, bad luck partner

Hand 28:  I made the best lead but partner didn't return the 10 as Ops had bid 3NT (with NO stop!!!!) - still, we held this to 9 tricks and got a great score as Ops should be in s!

Hand 30:  I jumped to 5 after a competitive auction and got doubled!  No problem though, partner has exactly the right cards and Ops only play 1 and switch to a - I am so shapely I bring this home, doubled!

Such a tough event but really enjoyed it - playing strong players is a challenge and a great learning experience.

Overall standings HERE

21st October 2017

EBU Autumn Congress - "B" Final Session 1:

Playing with a regular partner in the EBU's Autumn Congress.

Considering the field strength, we were very pleased with 13th at half time and the only zero was the Ops doing really well, not exactly our fault!

Our commentary (Click the "Hand X" to view the hand):

Session 1: (48.84%)

Hand 1:  I had forgotten we did quantitative here over my 1NT so I took 4NT as Ace asking - I gave the answer and so partner raised to 6NT - I would have bid 6NT myself had I realised as I have 13 with a 5 card suit.  All I had to do was lose a  and 12 tricks roll in, only 4 of us made it though!

Hand 7:  I did well to make this, it says I can make 4 but it is double dummy I think, not many made this and the pair in 4 went off.

Hand 10:  Against the best pair in the field (they won overall), we defend well and take this 2 off.  They didn't finesse my  though so we took an extra trick here

Hand 13:  Great bid by Ops, we didn't manage to take all our tricks though but even just making would have been a poor score for us - I also think the hand record is wrong here as it is not how I remember the  suit!

Hand 16:  Well bid and played partner (against Brian Senior too!) - 11 tricks are there but have to be very careful and partner was, well played partner

Hand 18:  We missed 6s here, half the field found it.  I bid them twice but 3NT is often a better contract over 5s, not when 6 is on though - I wouldn't have bid any different to partner though, perhaps we are just not in the same league on some hands, a tough field.

Final session of this marathon coming up......

20th October 2017 (Evening)

EBU Autumn Congress - Session 2:

Playing with a regular partner in the EBU's Autumn Congress.

Again, will give a more detailed commentary when I am home - better than this afternoon though and we just scrape into the 2nd set of 20 so make the B Final!!!

Simon and Margaret won more matches (8 overall) but their losses were bigger, still, we all get around 1 Green Point and more to come tomorrow!

A few drinks back at their hotel (maybe a glass of wine too many....!!!) and then a good nights sleep (rare for me!)

Overall standings HERE

Our commentary (Click the "Hand X" to view the hand):

Match 8: (70.51%)

Hand 1:  Ops bid to the right contract and we cannot do anything about it!

Hand 2:  I transfer to s here and Ops doubled my 2 bid, partner completed the transfer and nothing more was bid - we are in the only makable contract and not many others were!

Hand 3:  Odd here, Ops play bid 1 and I jump to 2s (6-15 range).  Ops double and partner raises to 3s, superb bid.  Ops pass out now and I make 3s (says I should make 10 tricks but nobody did)

Hand 4:  Ops didn't defend this too well and I capitalised. I open 1 and after a competitive auction, I bid s and partner doesn't correct as we are in a 4/4 fit.  During the play, South plays the A and I ruff high which holds, K now set-up in dummy.  I therefore clear the path to set-up dummy with the winning tricks and ruff in my own hand on every trick, a dummy reversal - it worked a treat and 1 off scored well!

Match 9: (39.74%)

Hand 7:  Partner found my suit (also her own!) but Ops guessed the  right and then squeezed and partner didn't win the first trick played to then clear the s, we just made the last trick - I am not sure we had quite enough firepower to clear the and make my others though.  Perhaps A lead followed by another and then partner wins the first and returns a High to unblock mine - hard to find though.

Hand 8:  Unlucky Ops, partner did very well to keep quiet here so we avoided all traps and Ops played in a doomed 2 contract

Match 10: (35.58%)

Hand 9:  I played well to make 9 tricks, unfortunately I bid poorly to be one off!

Match 11: (66.35%)

Hand 15:  Partner did really well here.   She had to leave a out to be able to ruff the hands and Ops hadn't realised and so didn't get the  ruff!  Bit of luck but well played partner!

Hand 16:  We are in the right contract here and not pushed up as some were, partner bids and plays well here

Match 12: (66.69%)

Hand 18:  Brilliant here partner!!!  2 opened (new rules, 12+ with 5 controls).  Ops doubled, I pass and partner quietly bids 2 (the only contract that makes and we are the only pair in it!)  North never mentioned his s though......

Hand 19:  Unlucky Ops, I found the best lead here which was my doubleton!  I "never" lead a doubleton but had no constructive alternative here.  It plays through dummy's A setting up partners K and 3 other winners, good defending here!

Match 13: (62.82%)

Hand 22:  This was the last board of the night and a LONG day of travelling and playing cards.  Here I had my now familiar and hand (a theme for me over the last week as this was the 4th 5/5 or better hand I have had).  I bid strongly and Ops do the same, they go to 4 and I bid 5, partner corrects to 5 and Ops double.  I am cross with myself as I felt I would rather have played in 5 (not doubled!!!), still - must try my best and so off I go....  I win trick 1 with A and then take 2 s and play a 3rd , Ops ruff with the 9  so I discard the losing  returned and I ruff in hand then play my and ruff. I take the S finesse and it fails.  returned and I ruff in hand then draw trumps and show my last 3 s to make 11 tricks!!!!  Ops were absolutely shocked (as was I to be honest!!!).

20th October 2017

EBU Autumn Congress - Session 1:

Playing with a regular partner in the EBU's Autumn Congress.

Interesting format which I haven't fully decided if I like or not!  It is almost a hybrid of Swiss Pairs and Match Point Pairs.  Swiss format in that we move to a table appropriate to our current cumulative performance but only 4 boards per match.  Overall, I quite like it but it is very unforgiving if you get a zero with only 3 other hands to make it back!!!

A hiccup with the venue booking means that we are playing in Reading University for the first session then having to come back to our hotel and then on to the venue, not a total inconvenience but quite annoying really!

I arrived very early and got settled in, a lot of pairs arrived up to 30 minutes past the start time and the organisers accommodate this.  They pushed the evening start time back to 8pm though.  I went down the M4 by mistake on my way to our hotel and so did a 12 mile detour!!!  I am not to be trusted driving on my own!!!

Overall, we did ok to win 3 out of 7 with a few close scores but 2 disasters (largely down to the Ops doing the right thing but I messed up a few hands and partner made 1 error mis-counting the s on another)

Our friends are here too and Simon and Margaret had a similar start to us but won 4 matches (Green's per match won), again, not spectacular but an ok start same as us.

Our commentary (Click the "Hand X" to view the hand):

Match 1: (36.12%)

Hand 2:  Unfortunate here, we share the points (20/20) but I win the auction with my 2.  It is not an unreasonable contract and should go 1 off - I didn't crash the K though and went 2 off - even 1 off would have been 27% for us so we couldn't win - I notice 1 pair made it though!

Match 2: (59.26%)

Hand 5:  No excuses here - I just didn't ready partners lead as showing the K - The bid had been doubled and so I switched, wrong!!!  We can take 5 s then a , sorry partner

Hand 6:  Ops are in a good contract but we defended really well here.  We played the s well and kept forcing, they didn't take my last trump out so when we forced again and declarers last trump was shown, I made my (now) master J to take the contract off.

Hand 7:  I play well sometimes!  Here, we are in a good contract but I suspect we may make 4s so I need to make an extra trick.  I play the s well only losing 1 trick - Ops switched to a but because he had bid s, his partner won the and switched to a - I claim the rest of the tricks.....!

Match 3: (28.85%)

Hand 11:  6 is on here for the Ops, our pair bid it and played it well to make it

Hand 12:  Ambitious here and it didn't work!  Partner raised to 3s and I thought I was good enough to make game, wrong!!!  I guessed the  wrong too which cost 2 tricks, went down more than I should, 1 off in 3s would have been a great score - I must learn to pass sometimes!!!!

Match 4: (46.79%)

Hand 13:  Ops got in a mess and then bid a slam that wasn't there - bit of luck for us!

Hand 16:  Ops are in the right contract, they guessed well on the for the extra trick but still a poor score for us if they just get home

Match 5: (57.05%)

Hand 17:  I play well again here making the extra trick.  I lost the Q early then removed the s and Ops had only taken a and a , they didn't find the ruff and I threw my s away on partner's s to make 11 tricks!

Match 6: (52.24%)

Hand 21:  Ops tried to fool me here by playing the s wrong to show an even number, I didn't believe him and made 4 tricks - they never found the switch so I take home 8 tricks

Match 7: (41.44%)

Hand 25:  Ops bid a weak 2s and raised to 5 straight away, 6 is on and they made 6 - only 3 pairs in game and the others only made 11, a zero for us but nothing we could do about it!

19th October 2017


Worked in the office in the morning and then went home to work to minimise my tiredness and germ spreading!  Still a lot of coughing during the match though but I wasn't alone!

This was a tough match against 1 of my semi-regular partners and 2 team mates from other teams I play in!

After a tight first 12 boards we find ourselves 1 Imp up (17-16)

Hand 2:     A very shapely hand and I have few points but 2 suits including 5 s, partner opens 1, Ops double - I raise to game, Ops bid 4 and partner bids 5s - again, doubled!  Partner makes it to gain us 5 Imps!

Hand 4:     Our team mates missed game here costing 10 Imps, not an easy game to bid though, well done Ops here

Hand 11:   Ops get unlucky here and penalise my 2 overcall (systemic bid with no escape route on this hand) - I am very shapely again and 9 tricks roll in - 570 gives us +11 Imps!

The second half was tricky and we didn't shine here losing by 28 Imps (13-41) and lose by 27 overall for 15-5 loss.

Hand 13:   A blip by partner here, with 5s and 1, stayman was bid over my 1NT - we ended up in 3NT (it is teams) instead of the 2 making 9 tricks at the other table, 8 Imps down here

Hand 17:   We bid a thin game here and Ops at the other table were in a part score, +7 Imps for us

Hand 21:   A slight blind spot by partner, 3NT is the contract here and I have shown 4s when partner has 3s - I cannot make game in s but I did try.  13 Imps down here

Hand 22:   Great defending by Ops here, they took us 2 off - other table only our pair went 1 off too for a double negative, 7 Imps down here

Hand 24:   A final blip by partner (sorry partner) - another 3NT contract here but partner bid 4s which cannot make.  This was just a tough choice of which game is correct and in Teams, a suit game is often safest as over tricks do not matter - just bad luck to be fair but another 10 Imps down.

A shame after our first 2 wins but Ascot are a tough team and they were solid tonight.


Off to Reading tomorrow for 2 days of Swiss Pairs in the EBU Autumn Congress

18th October 2017


Although my cold is much improved, decided to stay home, rest and not spread germs!

Vee hosted the Improvers tonight with Val and Keith splitting up to assist the Improvers.  3 tables tonight and no issues tonight.  2 of our core improvers won despite the increased competition and pleased to see Kevin doing well again.

I notice a freaky hand again - hand 11 in the Improvers tonight, another "wow" hand!!!

Dissapointing to see only 9 tables in the main group but nice to see Penny at the top, not easy whilst directing too, well done!

Back to work tomorrow but will stay rested if I can as have a BBL match in the evening vs Ascot (away).

17th October 2017

Day Off:

Sad to report that my cold and cough has continued today.  Went into work but just grabbed my laptop and worked from home today (trying to keep my germs to myself).

Took my cat to the Vet too tonight as he has been poorly too, fortunately we think he is fine and just some medicine to give him for the next 2 days and should be fine again.

Supposed to be at the CBC Committee meeting tonight but have been asked to stay home as they don't want my cold!   Sent Val a detailed report on matches, web stuff, data protection and a few other bits and offered to be on hand if they need to call me - will catch up with the committee later tonight or tomorrow.

Hoping to be better tomorrow to host the Improvers - if not, will be just Vee.  Vee has just found out he is likely to be going to India Thursday too (for 10 days!!!) not confirmed yet though.

16th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Having been suffering with a cough still, I finished work early to rest for tonight.  It helped and I was fine the first half.  Then I started coughing and couldn't stop.  It was quite debilitating and we did suffer due to it.

I also felt bad in case I spread any germs, I would have stayed home had I known, sorry all.

A tight session despite all that and a good score with just 3% splitting the top 4 (we were 4th though!) - Margaret carried on her success and pipped us!

The tops and bottoms:

Hand 2:  Our Ops were a little ambitious here and we defended well

Hand 3:  We bid game, we should be in a game and we get a good score - actually slightly better in 4 but nobody bid game in s

Hand 4:  I wasn't thinking straight here (still have a headache now!) - we have a natural defence to 1NT so I thought if I double first I can try show my hand - it was left and we didn't defend well either here, I threw the s away

Hand 8:  Partner squeezed at the end and so Ops threw the long s and partner finished with 2 winners for the extra trick, nice play partner!

Hand 9:  Ops sacrificed at too high a level here, we took advantage I'm afraid, sorry Ops

Hand 11:  Most Ops in game here, I think West needs to bid after my partner doubles to show s sooner, bad luck Ops

Hand 12:  West soon made amends, bid and played really well here, we were just passengers!

Hand 15:  I didn't listen to the mantra "one, two, that will do" - sorry partner, I was too ambitious here

Hand 16:  I think we should leave the Ops in 2 here!  Perhaps easier if I don't open with my terrible hand - will take the blame for this one!

Hand 17:  Partner found the best lead here and so we made our 4 tricks, 3 s and A

Hand 22:  Partner played really well here and Ops didn't find the lead or switch, 11 tricks is great going here just losing 2 s!

Hand 25:  Only 2 of us in game here so we did well - I had a marginal decision on do I overcall 2 or not, I decided to and partner raised to game

Hand 26:  I think this was the only hand where partner didn't do well.  We need to attach the s here - my lead didn't help though!

CBC committee meeting tomorrow and may take time off work again

15th October 2017

Woking Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in Woking's Blue Pointed Swiss Pairs.

Still suffering with a cold and was 50/50 this morning on phoning partner to cancel, decided to take lots of tissues and strepsils and try my best.

I was sniffing and coughing less and less as the day went on and was glad I went.

Lovely to see so may of our local club pairs turn out today, think they all enjoyed it too and Colin & David did well finishing 4th (only 2 points off the top!), Andy & Michelle were in the top 10 and Trevor & Barbara got the top Non-Expert prize.

We had a good start and 6 pleasant matches, we managed to win 5 out of 6 and finished joint top!  A blue point is worth a third of a Green, so we actually won just over 1 green point today!  We shared the prize money and so £50 each plus a bottle of wine and we also got the top round score on 1 round for 2 nice glasses too (which Margaret kindly gave me both!)

Partner was on fire today and only 1 mistake all day!  We both do better in a calm and nice atmosphere and it was well run, comfortable and nice people.  I drove and on the way home Margaret was almost squealing with delight, so nice to see her happy and it was mainly down to her that we did well - thanks partner, a lovely day!

The scores don't show the orientation correctly for us, I was West and North (BW doesn't show this!):

The tops and bottoms:

Match 1:  Win 18-2

Hand 1:  I should have made this, South discarded 2 s and if I was paying attention, I would have then played Q and let it run or if covered, the J now falls - it says I shouldn't make it but it was there!

Hand 2:  I got lucky here, a friendly lead gave a trick and I then played up to my K which wasn't covered for another extra trick

Hand 4:  I was pleased to see partner double Ops 1 and when I bid 1 and Ops re-bid the s partner quietly raised to 2s and this was all that was on - not everyone made it either!

Hand 7:  Superb play by partner to keep this to 1 off, well done!

Hand 8:  Good play by partner but Ops helped us too - partner played a small S to a small  and then when in next, played another and South went up with the Ace crashing Norths K - North also discarded s to set-up partners 3rd and 4th

Match 2:  Win 15-5

Hand 11:  I opened a weak 2 and partner thought for a while then raised me to game - I couldn't do it but did try....

Hand 12:  I felt I should have made another trick here but although some did, getting home was good enough for a good score

Hand 14/15:  South opens 1 here - look at my hand.......!!!!  I was going to open 2 and show my 2 suits looking for a slam, so me being me, I just bid it!!!  How many auctions went 1, 6, P, P, X ?  Of course, it is always there and I made it for a good score!  The next hand was 7,4,1,1 shape too and Ops opened 1 and as I put out the stop card, they commented to say "not 6 again!!!), I only bid 4 though which partner raised, Ops nearly doubled but passed very wisely!

Hand 16:  I am cursed with s!!!!  Partner doubled Ops weak 2, South raised to 3 and I felt I needed to say I had points to bid 4 - partner raised me to game again and I got it home!

Match 3:  Win 13-7

Hand 17:  Partner defended this brilliantly, kept forcing them then finally took out declarers last to set-up our 2  tricks and take them 1 off, amazing!

Hand 18:  I think partner was a little ambitious here, still, we were on a high and think she felt were invincible!

Hand 21:  I had a friendly lead and was given time to lose a and make the extra trick here

Hand 22:  Partners turn to shine here making the extra trick in the long

Hand 23:  I made a mess of this and over-bid, not a good combination!

Match 4:  Lose 2-18

Hand 25:  I wont the first trick then we took out the s and later on I want my back, partner fell asleep and didn't play it, drat!

Hand 27:  I discarded a here which set-up the whole hand for Ops, my worst defending for a while here, sorry partner.

Hand 29:  Declarer played well here and got everything right!

Hand 31:  I have the first 8 tricks here so doubled, partner remembered our system and passed though she wanted to bid!  A quiet 500 for us....!

Hand 32:  I over-bid here, sorry partner

Match 5:  Win 20-0

Hand 33:  I have a nice hand here but not as nice as I needed, still, I kept giving East the lead and he had to give me tricks - 2 doubled making!

Hand 34:  I think we should have found a slam here but we couldn't work out how!  Still, most didn't find game!

Hand 35:  I have another strong hand and guess what, it's 5s again!  Making, again!

Hand 39:  We found the right defence here and got our ruffs in.  Ops would have been better leaving us in or 2s really

Match 6:  Win 19-1

Hand 41:  Ops bid s but decided to lead a , this was fatal and set-up all my tricks for me

Hand 48:  I was brave and got a bid in the auction - we got the right lead and took this off, it says they can make 6 but superb defending got 3NT 1 off!  This was the last board of the day and partner actually yelped with glee as we defeated this and won the match, best behaviour partner!!!!!  Still, was a nice feeling!

Back to CBC tomorrow and have a long hard day at work tomorrow too - a lot of events and matches coming up too.....

14th October 2017

Day Off

A hectic few weeks and a rare day off today.

Started coming down with a cold yesterday and is much much worse today - hope it eases off over night as playing al day tomorrow at Woking

We have done our weekly shop and chores and caught up on a lot of TV today.  We went for a meal at Wagamamas tonight in Camberley and I enjoyed my meal but it took ages to get in, there was a problem in the kitchen and Vee's meal didn't arrive until we had nearly finished ours!  We also felt twice the age of most of the other customers!!!!

May have an early night tonight to help prepare for tomorrow.

13th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A session of two halves here!  A terrible start where nothing worked, then a purple streak where virtually everything we did came good!

Both in good spirits tonight and both understanding of each others failings (we both did some!!!).

The tops and bottoms:

Hand 1:  I think I was right to bid the slam and it says it can make by me - this was simply unfortunate

Hand 3:  In my opinion, partner should not transfer me here - Ops overcalled and partner doubled (showing a transfer for us) - with only 4 s, I am not sure here - best if I pass the double actually!

Hand 4:  Partner made an impossible contract here!  He took a long while to do it and squeezed the Ops to make the s good, well done partner!

Hand 5:  Again, this cannot be made!!!  Partner made great use of my s and threw all the s away - then simply conceding 1 of the last 3 tricks and contract made, stunning!

Hand 6:  Another contract that should be there but is not - yet, partner made it!!!  Ops didn't continue the s and partner made great use of the breathing space

Hand 9:  Partner was a passed hand but then bid twice, I therefore pushed too but best if I simply sign off in 3

Hand 13:  Another impossible contract made by partner!!!  This one took a LONG time to play and ended with a great end play giving us the last 2 s

Hand 14:  Ops had a bidding malfunction - the double was meant as T/O!!!  We actually score 20 more for 3NT but still.....

Hand 16:  I didn't realise partner had 6 s, I therefore punted 3NT and took the ♣ finesse for the vital 11th trick

Hand 18:  Ops under valued his hand and they missed game

Hand 20:  After a forcing bid (4th suit) by partner, I should simply answer and bid 2NT - I jumped and so partner thought I had 17/18 - if I had bid correctly, we would have been the only plus score for 3NT making, sorry partner

Hand 22:  Ops tried to take the K which I ruffed and used the J to discard my losing , bit lucky here

Hand 23:  A bit more luck for us, Ops missed the slam

Hand 24:  Brilliant defending here - we kept forcing declarer and partner ended up with the top trump, Alan is really good at defending when he is on form (2nd half of tonight was the best I have seen this year!)

Day off tomorrow (with a tonne of TV to try and catch up on!)

13th October 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A fun session as always but neither of us on form today.  It looks like partner did worse than she did, it was actually my bidding mostly, sorry partner.

Some defending issues though, when I lead an Ace I want attitude (not count).....

Some hands the Ops are doing great things, not much we could do about it, well done Sylvia & Linda bidding 6NT, just a shame it was against us!

Not going to go through these here though as too many - feel free to view yourselves though - hopefully it is clear that we were genuinely unlucky on most of the bad scores (Friday the 13th.....!!!!)

Getting my hair cut on the way home (partner has warned me not to shave it all off like I usually do, will see........!) - then off to YHBC tonight

12th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in the Final of the Thursday Championship

We were up against it to win tonight as needed to gain close to 60% on the leaders (so we needed above 80% for sure!!!)

Have been working hard this week to catch up on last week and also organising a lot of bridge teams and committee work (both clubs) plus playing a lot - been hectic and I am not on form (excuses over!!!)

Things just didn't work tonight, even if we did the right thing we didn't get a good score - it took the Ops to go to the 5 level and go off for 1100 to finally get us a good score!!!

We stayed 3rd in the Championships so not a terrible performance overall.

Well done to Marie and Robin for winning (again!!!).

Some of the hands tonight:

Hand 3:   Ops in the right contract, also played it well

Hand 4:   I couldn't make this though I should have played a second  whilst I had an entry to dummy but they don't run - 2 more tricks would have been made though for a score just below average

Hand 5:   Our first hand of the night and I bid up to 5, Ops doubled and partner bid - really, I don't want to be rescued if I dug my own hole - the contract actually makes too but not 6

Hand 6:   A close call here but on balance, I think partner is better off defending here

Hand 8:   We were pushed too high here, good bid by the Ops as 5 is a great sacrifice too.  Some made 11 in s but it really shouldn't

Hand 12: Ops in the right contract and made what they should - as the cards played, we could have got 1 more trick by playing the s earlier, Ops discarded one.

Hand 14: I didn't like my hand for a Double but partner was right, I should double and with her 10 HCPs, partner passes.  If Ops try to rescue, partner now knows we have game values.  Sorry partner.

Hand 16: I felt so mean here - Ops sacrificed against our 4 and I doubled, felt bad here

Hand 17: Partner doubled Ops 1NT and North tried to rescue, unlucky about the split and we defended well.

Hand 21: I bid well here, Ops both bid and partner was a passed hand - I have a good idea of the lay of the cards and so jump straight to game which is always there.

Hand 24: I didn't support partners s here, tricky hand though- we went looking for the wrong slam!!!  In trying to make 5s, I lost one more trick then I had to, sorry partner

Playing twice again tomorrow then a day off to recover on Saturday!!!

11th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in the Improvers Group.

Vee wasn't feeling too good tonight and my regular partner was free so said she would come up and help.  I also had an offer from Val and Keith too so the 4 of us played in amongst the group tonight to offer help and advice as we went.  My partner was surprised how good the group was, I took this as a big compliment to the group and it is true, they have all improved so much since we started.  Although the results are not key here, it was a relief to see the 2 pairs of "experts" at the top!

All of the hands from tonight:

Hand 1:   I had best defence against me here and cannot make this after they get a ruff, unfortunate

Hand 2:   Again, Ops in the right contract here.  I could have taken an extra  here but kept this so they couldn't run them in dummy - he didn't need them in the end!

Hand 3:   Superb play by partner here to make an impossible contract, Ops ducked the first trump and then the honours crashed on the 2nd.  Squeeze got East to discard s too so tricks rolled in!

Hand 4:   Unfortunate again, Ops can make 12 tricks and ours did....!

Hand 5:   I was a bit frisky here and opened this 3NT (I know it doesn't quite fit but extra length makes up for the Q - in my head!).  I mainly did this as we were in a non-counting session and wanted to see if partner would remember the system - unfortunately, she did not but it wasn't an issue and it gave rise to a useful discussion.  I like to play this that if you hold something in both majors, Pass.  If not, bid 4

Hand 6:   Partner didn't reverse, then bid on after I gave preference - wasn't sure what was going on here so I raised to game - in trying to make it, partner missed a trick but I don't object to trying to make the contract.

Hand 7:   I don't have much but I do hold 5 trumps!  We go the defence just right here.  We made a  we didn't have to though.

Hand 8:   I opened here (as all other Norths did)  and East has 25 HCPs!!!  A hand where you need to stop and think.  In my opinion. East should double.  West bids 2s and then East re-bids 3NT.  You can place almost all the points in North so win the on trick 1 or 2 and play AKQx s over to dummy - now finesse the  or as you know it will win!

Hand 9:   Good defending again here, we played passively and made Ops do all the work (giving us multiple tricks)

Hand 10:   Unfortunate (again!!!!), one of the other tables didn't bid game.....

Hand 11:   Partner's only hand not played well - we were pushed up too high anyway so never on for a good score as it happens.

Hand 12:   Partner played this really well but did also have some help.  Ops made a good lead and then they switched rather than taking out partners only stop.

Hand 13:   Lucky for us here, Ops didn't bid to game.  Easier if they bid to the level of the fit after an overcall - see bidding notes in the Improvers section.

Hand 14:   Ops had not had a great evening and was tired and nervous - we defended well to take this off but Ops claimed the last 2 tricks which I disputed.  They then played the low trump first which I won and then played my winner - they should play the non-trump and then trump my last card

Hand 15:   Another hand played brilliantly by partner!  Got a bit lucky with Ops starting the s though but good play on the s got this contract home!

Hand 16:   Ops in the right contract and played well - well done Ops!

Final of the Thursday Championships at CBC tomorrow.  We are mathematically still in with a chance but it is remote - still, would like to go out on a high.

10th October 2017


Badminton tonight and I played poorly!  Won half of my games but largely due to my power and my partners - I couldn't serve well or return serve well for some reason.

Sorted out our Christmas meal and skittles though and went for a pint after too (6 of us), was really nice!

Home a bit later but nice and relaxed now.

Have been sorting out some admin for Bridge today and helping a partner with a convention card for her new partner.  Planning to do a bit of research after this diary update and also write 3 reports ready for next weeks CBC committee meeting.

Hosting the Improvers tomorrow (with Vee if he is well enough) - also have offers of support from Val and Margaret too, so may have some nice players to play in amongst the Improvers to try and help out.

Also heard some good news about Rodger at CBC who seems to be improving and I am thinking of him today and sending out happy thoughts.  Jo at CBC seems to be recovering well too and now moved to Frimley Park which is much better and closer to us all - all the best Jo and virtual hugs being sent

9th October 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a single night competition for the Greta Clark Cup

I was away last week so it has been a few weeks since we last played (again!).  Vee cam home tonight too, was great to see him - been 10 days since I saw him!  He has come back with a cold though and feels rough, waited up for me though (even though we over-ran tonight).

Pleased to see 2 of my Competition Partners win tonight, they have never played together before either and playing the same convention card I play with Jill too - well done Jill & Nick!!!

Not our finest evening tonight, I let my partner down quite a bit.  No real excuses but a hard day at work today after a week away and a mountain of work to get done.  Still a bit sun-burnt from Jersey too and had a mild headache now since Wednesday last week!

Some of the hands tonight:

Hand 1:   It says I cannot make this but the way it was played I can if I take the  finesse the other way, I chose wrong here, sorry partner.

Hand 2:   Ops are in the right contract, we can take the A but even then, the score is not much improved.

Hand 3:   I got the s right here placing the J in East and the A in West to make the extra trick

Hand 7:   Partner played well here to make a trick with the 8, not many others did, well done partner!

Hand 9:   I made a forcing bid of 3 which was passed, I can see why to be fair!  In theory, 2 and 3 is all that makes but in practise, 3 is not to tricky for a better score (as a number did)

Hand 11:   I was looking for ruffs here but they didn't come, Ops did well to ruff out the s though.

Hand 13:  I had some luck here, Ops ducked the K on the 2nd trick allowing me to make my J for the 10th trick.

Hand 15:  Ops not in game here, bit of luck for us here.  They stopped as both had 12 HCPs but when there is a double fit, push a little further

Hand 19:   I need to make one of my Qs here but Ops (who won the Cup!) managed to pin them both, well played Ops!

Badminton tomorrow night after missing the last 2, looking forward to it!

8th October 2017

Met Cup:

Playing with a regular partner as part of the Surrey Read Team (Surrey 1).

3 Sections today and results for each are here:

A Section

B Section

C Section

Playing 5 rounds of 5 boards then a break and then the last 4 rounds of 5 boards.

At half time we score up and we won 4 out of the 5 matches to be top with a 10 VP margin.

The second half was a bit tougher and we had some tricky hands which we didn't always get right - however, won 3 out of 4 matches here too!

As the last hand was being played with out team mates vs Kent (we were running joint top with them) it all rests on this board!  As they score it, I watch the screen change and they did well!!!  We won by 3 VPs.

Some of the big swings from our 4 (teams of 8 but we scored up with our home section):

First Half:

Hand 1:   Part score at out table but team mates bid and make game!

Hand 2:   We defeat 4 and our team mates double their sacrifice for a huge swing!

Hand 4:    I had 8 trumps and so took the finesse, it failed!  The Q was a doubleton though and I make 11 tricks if it is right (as our Ops did)

Hand 6:   We make game (well done partner!) and our team mates defeat it

Hand 14:  I make 4 doubled for 590, Ops make a part score!!!

Hand 24:  I showed the minors and Ops bid s too in the auction, partner made a great decision to lead a  and so we take this off - our team mates made it for a big swing

Second Half:

Hand 1:   Partner opens 1 and huge hesitation from Ops, I bid 1 then partner bids 2 and Ops pass - I then bid 4 (5 points and 8 s) - I have a void and single - they lead a and so partner's Ace takes care of the and 10 trick roll home - team mates make 3NT at their end for a double game score !!!

Hand 9:   We defeat 4, team mates make 3NT

Hand 15:    Ops bid and make game, our team mates made game but didn't bid it - a rare slip from them who had a near perfect day

Hand 16:   We defeat 4♠ again and team mates took 300 too !

Hand 18:   We had 6NT bid against us and he made 12 tricks - a flat board we hoped..........No!!!!  Team mates bid and made 7NT!!!!  Well done guys!!!!

There were other smaller swings and some great defending by Jill and I with team mates bidding and playing well throughout, a great day and nice to come out on top for a change!!!

7th October 2017

Day Off:

After a week in Jersey, a well deserved day off today!  Got all the chores done around the house and caught up with the Bridge admin.

Have now set-up the register for YHBC Annual holiday (Worthing this year) and also helped with Surrey Leagues and setting up the web pages.

I was going to re-do the diary entries for the last week but decided to leave as they were in the end (who is really going to re-read them anyway!!!!).

Vee is having a great time away too, the weather is not as good as we had in Jersey which is a shame but he is not letting it spoil the break.

Met Cup tomorrow with Jill (part of the Surrey C team) so also making sure I know our convention card inside out!!!!

6th October 2017

Jersey 8:

Last day today, happy and sad (almost equally).

As a lot of people know, I am not a massive holiday fan, I prefer to live my normal life and I miss it when I am away!!!

Have really enjoyed this break though (despite the Bridge sometimes!!!) and met some lovely people and had some great fan (another cooked breakfast today and finished the holiday with a 3pm Afternoon Tea!).

Still, pleased to be going home and get back to my Cats and my own bed (not that I sleep a lot but better in my own bed!).

Now I am home, I see the Friday Greta Clark was won by Colin & David with a huge score, well done guys!

A day to sort myself out tomorrow (including tidying the last weeks diary entries!!!) and then off to the Met Cup (playing for Surrey C).

5th October 2017

Jersey 7:

Playing with a regular partner in the Farewell Pairs

Another fine food day, excellent fry up and Stilton & Celery soup, pork and white chocolate parfait tonight!

Bridge was ok but a few hiccups - partner played exceptionally well but bidding and defending needs work from us both - I punted 2 contracts and couldn't make them - we did bid 6♥ though which cannot make - I was fortunate to get the A♣ followed by Q lead when I hold Kx and can set the rest up - bit of luck but will take it!!!

Our team won in the Bracknell league tonight too, well done Margaret, Tricia, David & Alan!!!

More impressive was partner making 4♠ on hand 2, that was truly exceptional!!!

A lovely week and great food and company - missing home and my cats though!!! Miss Vee lots too but he went away this morning so won't see him until Monday night !!!

4th October 2017

Jersey 6:

Playing with a regular partner in the Championship Pairs

Breakfast was good again, standard fry up but all good

We went on a walk today around the reservoir (11 of us) - the director organised it and said it was 2.8 miles and mainly flat...... It was flat for most of it but the 2/3 parts that weren't were incredibly steep, Margaret made it but only just!!!!

At the end we wear then guided along a field which ended with a sheer drop into the reservoir and the director was still trying to claim we could get down!!! We turned back then were guided another 2 miles to get 400 yards back to the car park!!!!! We ended up along a muddy track and more seep hills - was good fun though and a little story to tell!!! Have had quite a laugh about the guiding skills all day today!!!

It did make Margaret very tired though and she slept for the afternoon 

Another fabulous dinner (game terrine steak and baked Alaska for me) then then Championship Pairs

We did well tonight but missed a slam (my fault) and I mis-played 2♠ and Margaret bid 3♣ instead of leaving them to struggle in 2♠ (where I hold 6 to the KQ)!!!! Finished 2nd by 0.3% and the winners had their worst results against us, enjoyed again and then had a few drinks.

Good to see one of my other outside partners do well winning at YHBC too with a good score, it was a cup night too but visitors cannot win the cups so was jointly won by Val & Pitti and Bobbi & James - well done all especially Val!!!!  Also good to see our improver pair doing well at just under 50% in a close field - big score in the improves for the top 2 too, well done ladies!!!

Last full day tomorrow.....

3rd October 2017

Jersey 5:

Playing with a regular partner in the Multiple Teams

Breakfast was another good fry up!

I have playing my civilisation game here too and been stuck on one level but beat it today!!!

We went to the zoo and was really impressed - had a lovely time, had a swim/jacuzzi/steam room session when back then a glass of wine followed b another great meal (though Margaret didn't enjoy hers) - I had salmon, steak and cheesecake !

As a pair, we were top by miles on imps with 2 rounds to go but finished poorly - largely Ops doing well but some our fault too

Hand 25 I asked partne to sign off in 5N but it was not taking right and ended up in 6 - as they played A♠ then switched, I can ruff a  to make this but I didn't and went one off!

Hand 19 partner did well to bid the slam - only 2 pairs bid it and the other went off, well done partner!

Our team mates didn't get the session right but enjoyed themselves and we all did to be fair!

2nd October 2017

Jersey 4:

Playing with a regular partner in the Swiss Pairs

Breakfast was delicious (ordered eggs benedict as did Margaret) and the mushroom veloute followed by hake then lemon posset was exquisite!!!

We had a seminar on playing in trumps this morning which was useful and well presented

We won 2 matches tonight and had some gifts though did some good things ourselves too - first match was just odd and best not discussed!

Hand 15 has caused discussion - I opened this 2♣ and opps overcalled and partner needs to double or bid 3♣ - even when I jump to 4 no bid came - I made 12 but not in it - this hand no longer meets a strong 2 bid (16+ or 12+ with 5 controls) but I stick by my choice here!!!

1st October 2017

Jersey 3:

Playing with a regular partner in the Swiss Pairs

Breakfast was outstanding again and the tempura prawns then beef and yorkie tonight was truly amazing!!!

We had a lovely day doing a bus tour of the island and really enjoyed it

Bridge tonight was not as good but better than last night

Hand 1 I put partner into 6N which is the right contract but she couldn't see it and went 7 off, that really threw her and took a while to get over it

The 2nd match was much better and some top defending by partner

3rd was close but I didn't compete on 1 hand and let them play in 1 when we can make ♠s and that cost us the match

Planning on swimming tomorrow after breakfast and the seminar and final of the Swiss pairs in the evening


30th September 2017

Jersey 2:

Playing with a regular partner in the Random Teams

Breakfast was outstanding and the beef and desert tonight was truly amazing!!!

Bridge tonight was not as good.........!

29th September 2017

Jersey 1:

Playing with a regular partner in Jersey all week!

5am this morning to get up and get ready - Vee kindly takes me to pick up Margaret and then on to Southampton Airport for an early flight

After eventually realising there is no drop off point, we stop by the station and walk in - thanks Vee, major star!!!

We check in and grab a bite to eat and a drink then a 25 minute fight - takes longer to taxi than the flight over!

We have coffee and cake for Macmillan and then off in the drizzle for lunch and a walk and then chill until dinner

Dinner was superb quality and free wine tonight too!

Then the welcome pairs - we do a few odd things but also some great things - Partners play was outstanding !!!

2 slams bid and I doubled Opps slam and took it 2 off - 2nd overall and a good score!

Links at top for results - too slow on the iPad to write much so look for yourself this week!!!

Welcome meeting tomorrow at 10am then off we go.... May not get these entries in regularly this week or too much detail - may re-do some when home

Proud of 2 hands tonight (besides partners amazing hands) - 15 and 19 being the only one to bid the slam and the game!!!

28th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We are practising for the Met Cup in October and although we didn't do well tonight, a few more things came up and was good to get more of the system in my mind.

I hadn't realised we bid Ks up the line after asking for key cards, we found the slam anyway but should have got there with certainty!

Really pleased to see my partner for the next week doing well tonight, with a scratch partner (although a good one!) too, well done ladies!

  • Hand 1:   I should have played a  to my hand on trick 2 and then I can make this, sorry partner
  • Hand 5:   I think I should have overcalled 1 after 1, this needs a lead but North bid s so partner led a
  • Hand 10: I had the chance to make 11 tricks here as J was played on the 2nd - I forgot the 10 had gone and so lost a needlessly, still - only 3 bid and made it so a good score
  • Hand 13: I overcalled s here but they didn't believe me and so we took 2NT 3 off, I didn't unblock the s though, should have been 4 off but no change to the score
  • Hand 15: This was where I got the K ask wrong but we found it anyway!  I didn't make 13 though but still a good score
  • Hand 16: We get a huge score just for doing what we should, odd but that is club bridge
  • Hand 17: We cannot win here, they bid 4 and it makes, they were the only pair to double our 4....crying
  • Hand 22: Unfortunate, we weren't allowed to play in 1NT - not much we can do here
  • Hand 23: Very difficult after a lead - sorry partner, I couldn't see it and it says it cannot be made - many others did though!

Off to Jersey tomorrow for a week - may not be timely or detailed or linked entries for a while.....

27th September 2017

Sylvia Rose Teams (Farnham):

Playing with a regular partner in the first round of the Sylvia Rose Teams series at Farnham.  The results are hand scored so the info is a table - direct link in purple above (from Farnham's results page) - hands are within the results file and can be downloaded or viewed there too.

I am just a stand in for matches when Nick needs me but we did well today (Browne team, currently 2nd).

2 Horror hands which cost us but we still managed to win by 16 Imps (14-6 in VPs)

Our terror was Ops opening 5 (as dealer) - I have 6 and 6 points and pass, partner doubles and I think for ages then pass.  They make 5!!!!  We have 6 on too!!!!  Fortunately the Ops at the other table didn't bid the slam but still, we earn -750 and -680 for a 16 Imp swing against us crying

The other horror was us in 6 with a 5-0 heart break against us, Ops were in 4 making 11 tricks so another 13 Imps against us.

The rest were mostly our way or flat.  We bid 3 games the Ops didn't bid and between us, we made 3 games that the other pair took off - great defending by Judi and Marie as our team mates too!!!

Vee hosted the Improvers whilst I was at Farnham and had a good evening with 3 full tables.  The bridgemates need updating (I updated the hardware but forgot send back to the units!!!) - will sort before next Wednesday!

Vee was a star and scored up as they went so only one round to score when home.  By the time I got back he had done it all, thanks Vee!!!!

Barbara and Gillian won with a huge 78%, well done ladies!!!  See their results HERE

Well done to Margaret & Lesley for coming top in the Main Group too, good show!!!

26th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular Woking club session

We are trying to get a few practise sessions before the Met Cup on 8th October where we are playing in a Surrey team.

I had trouble with traffic and only just got there on time and after a few rounds I had a blinding headache which was hard to deal with.  I gave in and took some headache pills in the end and it got better.

Despite that, we had a reasonable session but should have been better, some down to my choices, some was our play.

  • Hand 1:   Ops bid and made what is there, some didn't and we get a bad score
  • Hand 2:   I didn't open 1 (partner wouldn't either) and as dummy went down and I can see we should be in s!!!  Knowing this, I establish that we need to beat 140 and so I need 9 tricks.  I can make 1NT but go off as I am trying to make 9 tricks - I was right but unfortunately failed in my quest.....!
  • Hand 5:   My error, I thought we natural after partner overcalled 1NT - in fact, system is on.  My 2 was taken as a minor transfer (rightly) but I wanted to play in 2.  I should have bid 2 to transfer and 2 minus 1 gets us just above average rather than a bottom
  • Hand 7:   Lucky here, Ops finessed the  to my Q and we were able to establish my s
  • Hand 9:   Partner opens 1 and I have 20 points!!!! I ask straight away and then find out 2 key cards with the Q.  This may not be enough but now have to go on to 6 - fortunately, Ops lead A and partner has a void.  Just the K to lose now and slam made - well done partner!  Some tried 6NT but this cannot be right, when you have a big hand, ask partner what they have and trust them!
  • Hand 12:  I open weak 2s and partner has 20 points!!!  Rightly goes looking and I am a disappointment.  We stop in 5 but I can only make 10 tricks, sorry partner.
  • Hand 13:  We are right to be in this slam but unfortunately partner went off.  I think this plays better in 6NT as it happens but in either case, I think the key is to lose the A and then use my long suit to throw the losers away.  Bad luck partner.
  • Hand 18:  Lucky here, Ops play the 9 in the middle of the hand (from QJ9) and I ducked as did South so my 10 won and I made the 9th trick!
  • Hand 19:  This was passed round to partner who opened 1.  I reply 1 and passed out.  We are the only EW playing here and in the right suit played properly - a good combination!
  • Hand 20:  I think we should be in the slam here but this is where my head hurt badly and I forgot to finesse the and then had to take it the wrong way and lost it, sorry partner, my fault here.
  • Hand 22:  Lucky for us here.  Ops system meant their 1 opening is just a point count, we have both bid by the time it gets back to them and there is no room to find the best contract.  We defend well to hold to 9 tricks too when 10 is on offer for them.
  • Hand 23:  At the time, I felt I got the wrong, I should have played up to the K and then done it again, I lost 2 s instead but I made the contract - only 1 other did and it seems it is not there at all if they attack the s early enough
  • Hand 24:  Very bad luck Ops, dummy was laid down and the Q was not visible (it had slid under the K) - declarer didn't touch them to run until too late when the Q was then visible again so we make an extra
  • Hand 26:  Ops didn't attack the s to get the ruff and I was so pleased to be just 1 off here - even more pleased when I see I cannot in theory make 7 let alone 8 tricks!!!

Sorry I wasn't fully there all night partner and will do better on Thursday.  Playing in the Sylvia Rose in Farnham tomorrow as Vee hosts the Improvers.

25th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 9 of the Monday Championships

I remembered that I am scorer tonight (forgot last time!!!)

Not played with my partner for a few weeks due to holiday's but we had a reasonable night tonight and no heated hands!

I didn't play many hands and less than 6 on most boards in the first half but I made the most of the hands I did play.

Partner played well tonight and good bidding too, our defence used to be our strongest asset but we both feel it needs work again now, will have a chat soon to resolve a few things.

We had some luck where Ops over-bid but most of our good hands were our own making.

Our bad hands were almost entirely due to our defending and will work on that, Ops bid well too on a few.

A few of the good ones:

  • Hand  6:  Partner played in 1NT and it looked like she had 20 points, the play was the best I have seen for a long time, great going partner!
  • Hand  8:  An amazing hand, not many points but incredible shape - partner did well to raise me to 5 after the Ops bid in s and I made 12 tricks, hard to find it though and everything is right.
  • Hand 11:  I was pushed up to 5s and under pressure from the start, I lost a to the Ace and then had to get the next one right - are there 3 to the Ace or 2/2?  I thought for quite a while and then played for the drop - it worked!!! Phew, now I only lose 1 and 1
  • Hand 12:  A race here to get the away, I lost the A and then A but then they switched back to the - I played the K to beat partners wining Q and then played the J to throw the away for the extra trick
  • Hand 13:  A little ambitious from Ops and we defended right here
  • Hand 24:  Unlucky for the Ops, we found the right contract and made what we should - others didn't

Pleased to see Linda & Sylvia do well tonight.  Both Margaret's (with separate partners) did well too

We are still leading the Championship with 1 round to go but can still go to any of the top 4 - we need a good result and for one of the others not have above 56% (roughly), fingers crossed!!!

No Badminton tomorrow as I am playing at Woking with another regular partner as a practise session in advance of the Met Cup next month.

24th September 2017

Surrey Green Point Swiss Teams:

Playing with a regular partner and team mates in a Surrey's Green point Swiss Teams.

We had a pleasant day but didn't cover ourselves in glory, again!!!

We had a great start and could do no wrong, sometimes starting well does you no good though - in this case, we won no further matches!!!

We had some close matches and 2 horrors and some hands were great, of course, some were not!

Our matches were:

Win 17-3

Loss 8-12

Loss 8-12

Loss 7-13

Loss 4-16

Loss 7-13

Loss 2-18

Some good bits:

Hand 3 I made a take out double and partner passed - we got our defence spot on though (plus a bit) and although they can make 3, we took 2 1 off doubled!

Hand 4 We can make 3 and they can make 2 - ended up pushing them up and, again, we took an extra trick to get 3 off 2

Hand 13 I am at a loss here - Ops open 1 and I bid 3 showing the majors (alerted and explained by partner).  Ops then bid 3 (my 6 card suit), it is passed round to me.... I think that if I double, it will be pulled so I pass and quietly take it 3 down for 300!!!

Hand 17 I had the choice of game in 3NT or 4 and actually chose the wrong contract but I made 3NT, a lot of pairs did not - perhaps my play is ok!

Hand 18 I squeezed out an extra trick again here but only as Ops didn't start the s soon enough and the long gets one away

Hand 25 We managed to get our 3 tricks plus a ruff, Ops didn't pull the trumps in time, not entirely our own credit

Hand 35 Ops open 1NT and partner bids 2 (showing s and a minor).  I (rather rashly) bid 3NT with this info....!!!!  Ops lead A and think their partner wants a next so switches to Q.  I duck this and they play another and Ops play the K - I take this with the A now they are all set up.  I don't have enough tricks though so what can I do?  I lead the 9 and it holds - now the A then K and the Q drops - I show my hand and claim 11 tricks!  We should have been in s for a safe contract but where is the fun in that!!!

Hand 45 Our Ops failed to bid the slam (the majority did find it, including our team mates!)

Hand 46 Our final hand of the day and partner plays a blinder.  Ops pass 2 round and then double it and is passed back and left.  This should be one off but partner fools the Ops with the s and they don't make their K and contract made, good finish partner!!!

Hand 33 Looks good for us but should have been entered by South and not East - I am good (sometimes) but even I couldn't have made 10 tricks in s here!!!  Have e-mailed the directors to correct.  Our defending was still good here though as they can make 11 tricks!

A tough weekend but worth doing and good experience - a week of club bridge ahead then off to Jersey for a fun bridge week!

23rd September 2017

Surrey Green Point Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in a Surrey's Green point Swiss Pairs.

We had a pleasant day but didn't cover ourselves in glory.

Nice to see quite a lot of local pairs from our clubs supporting the event and some did well, others enjoyed the day!

We had some bad luck, were against the cards and also made our own blunders!

We did manage to win the last 2 matches though so came away with half a green point.  Our Team mares for tomorrow did better winning 4 out of 7, well done Simon and David !

Our top club pair was John and Philip finishing 17th, well done both - very good performance!

Our matches were:

Loss 8-12

Loss 3-17

Loss 3-17

Loss 7-13

Loss 2-18

Win 20-0

Win 11-9

Some good bits:

Hand 1 (our first hand of the day), I re-bid showing 15/16 and partner has a 9 count and raises to 3NT - I can only see 6 tricks from the start but keep calm and see what I can do.  I play on s after the Ops block the s and watch as s are being thrown away - I have a sneaky plan to end play and get a couple of s - it works and I make 9 tricks!!!

Hand 22 I bid well here and 9 tricks always on - not everyone in it though and some went off

Hand 24 was good play again and I squeezed an extra trick in s by losing the second one

Hand 38 our Ops missed 3NT and so we had a good score, we defended well too to stop 11 tricks

Hand 39 was lucky - Ops pre-empted in s and then raised in s - I bid 2 in the meantime and partner doubled 4 to show s.  I passed it and we quietly took this 1 off.

Hand 42 our Ops ruffed a but hadn't realised I was out too and so I made an extra trick here - as they went looking and backed out to 5, this now meant 1 off

Hand 48 we missed game here but losing trick said no - I played well and Ops didn't take the A to give me an extra trick

Hand 47 (I know, out of order but this was the last hand we played) - partner is playing in an ordinary looking 2 contract, we were losing the match and all depended on partner - no worries here, she played the best she had all day and made 1 more trick than was there with great play on the s and got the s right too - well done partner, you saved our day and won the match!!!

A few odd things without going into detail lost us a few hands but we didn't do anything terrible (other than 2 hands which I will keep quiet about!!!).

Looking forward to Teams tomorrow - my own target is 1 green point per event, this means we need to win 6 out of 7 tomorrow to hit quota............!!!

22nd September 2017


Playing with a regular monthly partner in a regular club session.

A wild night tonight and we somehow managed to sway the balance our way!  Pleased with 3rd and 57%, well done partner!

Both our declarer play was pretty good and was especially pleased with my 6NT on hand 2 - after the lead, I didn't play a card for what seemed like an hour!!!  I decided I had a  to lose and if the  went wrong, a LOT of s!!!

Having made my decision that the low was away from QJ, I played low and won with my 10, then squeezed the S out of E (eventually) but could have finessed it - trouble was, could take it either way so wanted the odds in my favour!

I squeezed an extra trick out of hand 8 too which was nice!

Hand 11 was a good score but partner opened and then didn't re-bid so I was left in 2!!!!  I firmly believe that if you open, you promise partner a re-bid - rant over....!

Hand 5 balances out though - partner got a away and then forced out the A and made an impossible 4 contract, well done partner!!!

Our chairman missed a trick on our first hand of the night, 13 (unlucky for some!!!) - he made up for it on hand 14 mind!!!

Hands 15 and 16 were the 2 that let us down though, partner's only real blunders, they came top with a big score overall so think their luck was in and am actually really pleased to see them top!

Hand 4 was interesting - declarer revoked half way through by ruffing a when he had 2 left.  Now he wins the remaining tricks and so a 2 trick penalty.  Well, we all agreed that equity should be restored but how?  We had a natural trick already (partner ruffed) and we have 2 tricks owed - is this all we get though or should there be a further penalty?  All present agreed there was no additional penalty, am sure this is right but doesn't seem right to me - still, we had 80% for the board so let it lie.....

Always such fun with Derek and despite his health not being great at the moment, his spirits are!

A weekend ahead of tough bridge too, Swiss Pairs tomorrow and Swiss Teams on Sunday in Guildford for Surrey's Green Point events - last minute entries tonight if anyone wanting to play - the Pairs especially I would recommend (we have quite a few CBC and YHBC pairs going)

22nd September 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We came out on top of a fairly tricky session today - some errors were entirely down to us, some with odd hands and some Ops were sparkling against us!

It is worth noting that hands 13 and 17 were switched as they were laid out wrong at the start and was the easiest way to resolve it - the hands therefore don't represent the scores!

On 13, partner reversed so I went looking - I asked and she doesn't have the A but MUST have everything else for the bid......... No!!!!  Fortunately, Ops gave us a penalty card and so contract made - very lucky!

On 14, partner doubled the Ops s and I am thinking what do I do here with 5 to the AK!  Ops supported to 2s so I double (denies 4s and shows a minor) - partner manages to pass this for penalties and it works!  I asked for a  and my low card loses but partner persists and we get the ruffs going - good defending here!

On 18 we managed to push our Ops up and defended well

On 20 our Ops were a little ambitious and again, luck is on our side here

On 21 we defended as well as we could having pushed again

On 23 we bid to 4 and luck is on our side again, Ops bid to 5s which goes off, 4 doesn't make

19 is worth a mention as partner made a contract that was not possible - stunning play including using a entry to finesse the - well done partner!

4 was partner not playing as well as she could - on the  switch from E, I think the A needs to be played as we cannot afford W to be on lead.....

8 I can save a trick by playing the J on the first one but the lead was fatal really!

15 we defended well - everyone else defended better it seems!!!

16 was a judgement call - I think I can get away with 3 off as it was played but I needed to ruff with my A (I had placed the 10 in the E hand and was wrong)

Another enjoyable session though and home for a bite to eat then back to Bridge!!!

A weekend ahead of tough bridge too, Swiss Pairs tomorrow and Swiss Teams on Sunday in Guildford for Surrey's Green Point events - last minute entries tonight if anyone wanting to play - the Pairs especially I would recommend (we have quite a few CBC and YHBC pairs going)

21st September 2017


Playing with my life partner in a regular club session that is also part of the Berks & Bucks Sim Pairs.

My regular partner is on holiday so Vee steps up again, he's a star!

Fair to say, not as good as Monday!!!

I didn't sparkle and Vee missed 3 system bids and made some odd choices in bidding and defending.

Hand 22 though, Vee made an amazing bid and I played well, the 2 combined to get 100% for us and I really felt we earned that one.  With a 3 count, Vee transferred me to s then pondered and eventually decided it is either 2 or 4 and went for it - bit lucky perhaps but it worked!!!  I don't think I would have raised with West's hand

As is my style these days, I put a bit more effort into the good results than the bad - this is not just me being lazy but I never like to be mean to Ops or partner (I don't mind being self critical) so will not write much more tonight!

I think we just had a poor start and Vee lost confidence tonight, that combined with tiredness and my play not being up to standard.  We finished well though with 6 of our best scores coming in the last 9 hands

Pleased that my other partner and team mate ("The Margaret's") did well, a boost for team morale following on from last night's success - well done girls!

Playing twice again tomorrow.....

20th September 2017


All go tonight!!!!

YHBC playing in the Berks & Bucks Sim Pairs, Improvers supposed to do the same but only 1.5 tables plus Vee (2 Improver Pairs went up to the Main Group leaving a half table in both groups, I am cross about this as 1 pair should have sated in the Improvers to balance the groups).

Vee had no choice in the end but to play socially with a spare dummy for a couple of hours and then called it a day.

I rushed through dinner and went to Dorothy's early to get set-up ready for our match, our first of the new season.

We are in Division 2 and I played with Margaret B with team mates Margaret W and Dorothy.

We played a lovely team and everyone was so nice and played in such a good atmosphere.  The Ops had a mixed team and in the first half we felt we started badly but picked up a bit.  When we made drinks for everyone and sat down to score, only 1 score against us and we had lots of big swings - 46-5 to us.

Matches can turn though so our Captain (Margaret W) kept us calm and said we still need to play straight down the middle and hold it together.

We all played well in the second half too (although the Ops bid better this time), we still won this half 33-5 to give us +69 (66 or more is 20-0).

Although we were delighted with the result, we all felt a little embarrassed and were very gracious - the Ops even commented on how kind we were and that the atmosphere was nice.

5 of the main group pairs are currently in the top 10 in the Sim Pairs (4 out of 8 clubs submitted results so far so all can change), well done to all though!  Results can be seen HERE

19th September 2017


Badminton tonight and I played poorly!  Won 2 out of 7 though most were quite close.

I had some skill but a lot of shots just didn't work - I arrived late as went to see my bridge partner and had a nice catch up and a coffee but had a hectic day today and all quite rushed, am tired today!

Enjoyed it though and good to exercise - my friend joined the club tonight too!

17th September 2017


Playing with my life partner in a regular club session that is also part of the Berks & Bucks Sim Pairs.

My regular partner is still a bit jet lagged from the US and so felt it best to miss tonight, we are going to go and see her tomorrow for a catch up before badminton

Played with Vee instead and really enjoyed tonight and we had no issues or grumbles until the last hand.........

Our defence throughout had been really good (very good to be honest) and then the Ops get in a pickle and end up in 6 which I double.  This HAS to go off and Vee didn't defend well, not taking K and not seeing my high low in s and instead gave a ruff and discard - still, it is never done deliberately and I didn't say anything, but......... I did give a look and that is enough, sorry partner.  We still took this off and got a top so no harm done other than to Vee's feelings which is more important than any score.

We played 11 hands and defended 15, fortunately, our defending was better than our play!

The bad bits:

  • 2: Not an unreasonable bid by partner but the 5-0 split was not fun and I didn't play it well either, sorry partner
  • 5: Ops were not ambitious and it did them well - most trying 3NT failed - not our fault here!
  • 13: Although the matrix says 7 tricks is all that is there, if partner tries leading up to my 2 red Ks, it may generate another trick or 2.....
  • 15: Oops!!!!  I over-bid my hand here and, worse, never mentioned my s or asked partner to bid - no excuses here, I am an idiot!
  • 22: I can make this on a non lead, nothing wrong with looking for it - 7 is the contract but only makes by me - this is not going to happen, unfortunate by I applaud the fact that Vee looked here and his judgement was sound, it just didn't make

The good bits:

  • 6: Superb defending here after we pushed them too far.  We beat the matrix in terms of tricks which is always nice.  We took 2 s, 2s and a (that we didn't need to make)
  • 9: OK, we missed 6NT but not bad going to bid the slam here - I open 2NT, partner bids stayman and I say s, he then looks and off we go!
  • 10: We push Ops up too high again here and get the defence right, sorry Ops
  • 11: I should have played my Q and tempted South but I didn't and I didn't catch the K, drat!  Still, nobody else got to the slam - partner opens 1, I bid 1, partner bids 3s and I go straight to 6!
  • 16: Ops didn't bid game, lucky us
  • 18: I upgrade my 18 to 19 with 5s and so open 2NT - only 2 pairs found game here
  • 19: Ops mis-understood the 2 asking bid and partner mercilessly took his 7s and then gave up!
  • 24: Ops didn't discuss the UNT bid and so assumed it was strong and natural and kept on bidding until I doubled!
  • 26: Stole this contract and made it as Ops didn't find the ruff

Thanks Vee, a fun night and superb defending!

Catch up with Jo and then Badminton tomorrow....

16th September 2017

Richmond Swiss Pairs (Blue Pointed:

Playing with a regular partner in Richmond's Blue Pointed Swiss Pairs.

Really enjoyed today, was just a fun day and not many issues - a few horror hands but no arguments, in fact, it was humour throughout for us and we had 6 nice matches.

We only won 2 of them but lost 11-9 on 2 which we could and should have won.  I was "hood-winked" on match 1 too by a weak 2 bid that only had 5 s.......!

Partner was on form today which helped, she tends to play better when it's calm and jovial and no nagging (which I am known to do!!!).

Our friends from CBC, Penny & Susan were leading after round 1 with 69%!!! They dropped a bit after that but won 3 out of 6, well done!!!  Simon & Kirsty won 3/6 too but had a bit of upset half way through, still good points!

A few bits from each match:

Match 1:  Loss, 13-7

  • Hand 2, the Ops found the perfect spot - what can we do here?
  • Hand 3, I can make this if I realise there are only 5♠ in the weak 2 opener.....!
  • Hand 6, Ops got the perfect defence, overtaking the lead - nothing partner could do
  • Hand 7, Ops mess up here and I pounce to make the un-makable contract!
  • Hand 8, I don't get a  lead - 11 tricks are easy now

Match 2:  Loss, 11-9

  • Hand 9, Ops are ambitious but we defend it right
  • Hand 11, Our defending skills are great here and stop the 12th trick!
  • Hand 12, I want to jump to 3 but we play a system for that - I still should have bid 3 after partner's s are doubled
  • Hand 16, I need to switch to a  on trick 2, sorry partner

Match 3:  Loss, 11-9

  • Hands are all flat really - unlucky to miss out on a draw here

Match 4:  Loss, 15-5

  • Hand 28, great defending again here - partner was allowed to ruff though and Ops could have taken this out
  • Hand 29, we were too ambitious here, sorry partner, my fault again - partner actually played this well to only be 1 off
  • Hand 30, This was mis-dealt!!!!  We had to take 60% each here as the NS hands at been switched in the deal - we held 3NT to 10 tricks which would have been 90% but of course, it wasn't the same hand as everyone else played!
  • Hand 31, I felt this was a good sacrifice - it was NOT!!!! Sorry again partner!!!!

Match 5:  Win, 20-0

  • Hand 33, What a Hand!!!! Ops over bid and partner doubles, I take 5 minutes to pass and not bid on in my 6-6-1-0 shape hand - great double partner!
  • Hand 34, I bid on this time with my 6-5-1-1 shape hand and 1 off is much better than Ops in game!
  • Hand 36, we defend really well again
  • Hand 39, The blip in a near perfect round - again, I have a huge distributional hand - only 1 off was good play I think but a poor score - I loved playing the 9 on 2nd round and let it go, the Ops face was a picture!!!
  • Hand 40, Partner had 1 trump and she managed to ruff with it!!!  Go partner!!!

Match 6:  Win, 15-5

  • Hand 42, I am too ambitious again here - I will not learn huh?
  • Hand 44, I am superstar to make this 1NT, was so pleased with myself (I know pride is a sin but still......!!!) - Ops have 3NT on here themselves!
  • Hand 46, I played really well here too to make another low level 2 contract
  • Hand 48, Shame this is the final hand of the diary, won't discuss it, partner knows this may not have been her finest hand.....!  Honestly though, a real shame as this was partner's 1 and only real blunder - the rest were my over-bidding or the Ops doing good things against us

If you haven't tried a Swiss Pairs event, give it a go - they can be great fun and also great experience as you face a mix of opponents but it should level out for how you perform on the day.

My Monday partner has been away for a few weeks, will play at CBC tomorrow if she is up to it but may just have a coffee with her and talk about her trip!

16th September 2017

YHBC Committee & Social Teams:

YHBC Committee meeting this morning at 10:45 at our Chairman's house and we have a full compliment.

I arrive early (as always) and chat about last nights hands and a few issues then the others arrive and we have the meeting.

Nothing controversial today and a lovely spread at half time.  I have a few more tasks to complete as do the rest of the committee.

Home by 13:30 and Vee has made lunch for me.   We catch up on a bit more TV recorded then head out to social bridge where we play as Pairs making up teams each round (5 rounds).

We all bring some food and eat after 3 rounds and all is great fun.

Vee and I didn't perform as well as we could but really pleased that Marilyn won (again!!!).

Playing in Richmond tomorrow in another Blue Pointed Swiss Pairs.

15th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 6 of the Beryl Doughty Cup - tonight was also the qualifier for the Surrey Club Pairs Challenge, any pair with Master Points can enter the Final on the 8th October.

Vee played too tonight with my regular afternoon and Congress partner.  We both did about the same, above average but could do better!

Was pleased with my declarer play tonight, I put partner into some un-makable contracts (reasonable I think, but not on these distributions!!!).

Hand 1:  I doubled after 1, 1, 1 me - I have s and support for partner's s but don't want to push the bidding up.  Partner says this is penalties and passed out - I am not saying I am right with my bid but even if this is penalties, it is asking a lot to take 1 off....

Hand 4: I got the s wrong and so only made 9 tricks.  Fortunately, 2 only 1 other made 9 tricks and the other pair who bid game went off.  The matrix says only 9 tricks on offer but if I play to the 8 it holds and 10 tricks available.

Hand 5:  I felt 6 was on here and put partner up - just about the only distribution that takes this off though, sorry partner.

Hand 6: I think partner can double here, he thinks I will take it out (I may well do) but if I do, we play in 4 which is better.  We got above average though....

Hand 8: I think partner over valued his hand here, fortunately, I was playing well at this point and managed to make this, don't know how!!!

Hand 12: You don't see many hands wilder than this!!!  Over half the contracts were doubled and we were fortunate to get one of the better scores

Hand 13:  This needs a lead by the look of it, we lose 2 tricks then set-up the rest and gain momentum, unfortunate

Hand 14:  I am not sure 2NT is the right bid by partner with only 1 stop but his judgement is normally sound.  Perhaps I should have bid 3 anyway though.

Hand 16: Well defended partner, between us we chose a passive defence and it worked well here!

Hand 21:  I was so daft here, Ops sign off in 2 (which they should make but most went off in), I decide to bid 3 on my own and go off 3!!!  I should pass or Double, silly Ian and sorry partner, no excuse here!

Hand 22: I have to make amends for the last hand, I play well here and do indeed make amends for the last blunder!

Hand 24: I played well here too, I needed to!

Always fun playing with Alan, he has excellent card sense and I look forward to these sessions!!!

YHBC committee meeting in the morning as Vee cooks for the evening where we have a 3 table multiple Social Teams event (we do this every 2 months or so).

15th September 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

A gift on our first hand but then a roller coaster until a good finish!

An enjoyable session though and a good score despite the position - I have a tendency to comedy (well, comedy in my head) and made a remark without thinking which had our table laughing with the room watching - sorry Jim, I didn't mean any offence!!!!!

Hand 5:  Well bid partner, the only pair to find the slam!

Hand 6: I was lucky they didn't attack the s and I then paused for a long time before getting the s right, was pleased (but more relieved) with my play here

Hand 7: Unfortunate for Ops, they took a long time to decide on the bid and then doubled due to the pause - this gave the wrong message to their partner and the wrong contract ensued (which I doubled as a meanie!!!)

Hand 8: Partner should bid 1NT when I double (but should I double holding 4 of their s??) - compounded by playing like a loon here too, sorry partner

Hand 9:  After the last hand, I got this wrong too, should have made this but instead of ruffing a  to get back to my s I played a and lost it and then let them ruff a - drat!!!

Hand 11: Great play by partner here, well done!!!  Ops needed to start with a and then play s through partner, so bit of luck too but also well played

Hand 12: Ops under bid and got a great score for it!!!  A bit unlucky for us

Hand 14: I felt I could get out for 2 off but 3 off was a disaster, sorry partner

Hand 19: Mis-understanding by Ops here and we took advantage mercifully by passing, sorry Ops

Hand 20: Ops didn't bid game here, again we took the gift

Hand 22: A defending technique here - Ops start with the A and carried on with the K.  I suggested that the A should promise the K, so now switch rather than play the K and partner knows to play a back when they get in.  The key here is that the Q is not in dummy, they know they don't have it so it must be in my hand.

Hand 24: Ops needed to play the A on the first go and then ruff a , they can count the cards here and it holds me to 9 tricks

Really good fun today, thanks partner!!!  I had to take a work call in the middle too which distracted me, but got back on track after.

Playing again tonight and Vee is joining up with my partner to play tonight too!  Waiting for Pizza now as we watch Masterchef (food and bridge, the main components of my life!!!)

14th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 9 of the Thursday Championships

Not our finest hours, mainly my play (again) but some of my contracts were not the best spot, just my play!

With 1 round to go we are lying 3rd overall and need a score of 77% in the last round to come 2nd (assuming other pairs don't improve their scores!!!) - a tough task but there is a chance, looks likely we will finish 3rd to be fair.

Hand 2: I was mad at myself, I must keep my small D for an entry to dummy - then I grab the last  to make the contract - turned a 100% to a zero as I was the only one to open my 11 count.

Hand 4: Annoying here, I made all that was there but others are making 10 tricks crying

Hand 5: Defence spot on here but Ops should be in 3NT really

Hand 6: Well played partner!!!

Hands 7: I think my partners double was a little light here (or should have 4) but perhaps I am a little critical here

Hand 13: I made a complete mess of this, have I played cards before..... crying

Hand 23: Partner missed my CDH bid and so we never found the  lead, drat!

An enjoyable evening, shame about the score but generally it was good.

Playing twice again tomorrow.....

13th September 2017

YHBC Improvers:

Hosting the Improvers tonight and Vee helped a Main Group Team out to make up for a player who unfortunately was unwell tonight.

He enjoyed it and only had a few blunders but they didn't score too well but not a disaster either.

I made up the tables with Chris in the Improvers and she was amazing (again!!!) - I couldn't defend for toffee tonight and must apologise for my poor defending, sorry partner.

The team I play for did well tonight coming 2nd, well done team!!!  My regular partner, Margaret, was 2nd on the X-Imps in the Teams too with partner Lesley, well done ladies!!! We are still behind a little overall but well placed and stand a chance - the table is in the Competitions area HERE

Our Analysis (in brief!):

  1. Partners only blunder here, I opened 1NT (upgrading my hand) and partner over-bid.  Use of stayman here would have been perfect and pass anything I bid (unless s then possibly bid game with a 9 card fit!)
  2. All pass to me, I cannot open a strong 2 and my preference here is to not miss game - partner must be 5-10 HCPs (balancing the 25 between Ops and Partner) so must be a good shot at game and I don't like Ops bidding when we have game on - nobody else bid or made 4
  3. Good bidding by partner here - Ops came in with a weak jump to 3 and partner bid 3 which I raised, well bid and played partner
  4. We played this with the board the wrong way round so I was South here - Ops open 3 and passed to me, I punt 3N and make 11 tricks - better to be lucky than good!
  5. I play well (at times) but here the Ops helped me out - I played up to my singleton K and it held.
  6. Flat hand
  7. Partner is brilliant!!!  She understood that this 10 count WAS an opening hand, this is the start of a great bridge brain working (in my view) - I of course raise straight to game after 1 opened.
  8. My blunder here - I should have used 4NT as RKCB and didn't, we bid 2, 2, 2, 6 - sorry partner.  We were lucky nobody bid a slam in the Improvers but this would be a poor board in the main group I think
  9. Ops missed the contract and we defended well enough to take this off
  10. My blunder here - I bid on after Ops bid 4 (which doesn't make!), they then bid to 5 and made 12 tricks, well played Ops but my error in bidding on, sorry partner
  11. An odd hand here - everyone seemed to mess up the play here, we defended well but so did everyone else!
  12. A very lucky hand, don't really know how I made this!!!  I do know that I gambled on my play though, I should never bid up after 1NT, 2NT with my poor 12 count, lucky though
  13. A good score but partner worked out the K was on side, then forgot it!!!  Should have been 9 tricks for 100%.....!
  14. Well bid Ops and well played - we actually could have taken this off on a lead as Ops got a away and lost the (taking the finesse when only 1 in dummy.....!)
  15. I defended poorly ruffing a  instead of discarding, sorry partner
  16. My defending let us down again - I didn't register the K had come down and then threw all mine away - the worst hand of my life I think!!!!

A really enjoyable evening, hope partner enjoyed too, I only wish I was dummy on more hands as partner's play would have pushed us up even further - her play netted us 95% (mine was only 70%!!!)

12th September 2017


Badminton tonight and I played well!  Won 7 out of 9 and the 2 I lost were close.

My drops and net play was really good tonight and very pleased with that!

Not too tired tonight too, think I am finally getting fitter!

Teams at YHBC tomorrow, I am hosting the Improvers so good luck to my team mates!

11th September 2017


Playing with a substitute partner in a regular club session which was also a qualification for the Surrey Final (Club Pairs Challenge)

Another fun session and generally not bad.  We were top going into the last round but 2 near bottoms to finish dropped us to 2nd.

Hand 5 was Ops in 3NT +3 and should be flat or good for us (it's cold) but unfortunately not many made it!

Hand 6 I should have just bid 3NT (despite the  overcall) but I didn't - would have been a 100% but instead a near zero (we were in 6 as partner quite rightly bid on past 5 as that is rarely a good score in pairs).

I messed up Hand 18 too - it shouldn't make but I was on course to do it!!!  I lost track of the though and went 2 off instead - we should have been in 4 though if I simply make a Take Out Double, drat!!!

Hand 24 I bid 3 which is our top, but Ops bid on (overbidding!!!!) - unfortunately, 3 makes, even worse, I doubled!!!!

The good bits (highlights)!:

Hand 8 - Partner opened a strong 2 (a win for the system!) so we find 3NT

Hand 10 - Ops open (justifiably), those that Pass Out do better, bit of luck for us but we defended really well here too

Hand 11 - Good double partner, good defending too

Hand 14 - Outstanding logic by partner - he started a cue sequence and when I didn't carry it on, my points must be outside s (his void) so now a 70% chance of the slam being on - it was!

Hand 19 - Gerber strikes again!  Mis-understanding by Ops and I rather cruelly doubled.  Thinking about it, this gave them a chance to escape to a good slam, perhaps I should not have doubled.

Tonight, pairs who achieved Master Points can enter the Surrey Final (Club Pairs Challenge) - I am not free on the 8th October so cannot play but hope the other pairs do and hope they do well!

10th September 2017

Social Bridge:

After our weekly shop and washing done, we have a bite to eat then head over to our friends, Les & Jennie, for social bridge.

Great hospitality and enjoyable cards - all play with all (8 boards each).

I start with Les and we are down by just 2 at the end.

Then I play with Vee and we storm our session taking over 100 lead in our 8 (Vee 2 ahead of me).

Then I play with Jennie and we win our session by 50 (she made all her contracts until the last hand where she only went 1 off) - I win overall with Vee 2nd!

Results are not the main thing here though, we all played well - Les had no cards to speak of though which was a shame - he made an exceptional 4 contract though which was really impressive!

Home made soup to finish making now and then relax for the night with our Soup and more TV!

Playing with my stand-in partner again tomorrow at CBC

9th September 2017

Day Off:

A day to myself as Vee working, I get some bridge admin done (including helping on the Surrey newsletter - due out Monday).

Vee home early evening and we have a nice Indian Take Away and relax watching TV recorded.

8th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

A night where partner was on fire!  Honestly, his play was superb and bidding restrained, really enjoyed tonight!

We had some bad luck where the Ops did what they should and did it well, not many of our own making.

A very unlucky hand where partner came in on his second bid with 2 - Doubled and I have an opening hand and pass, it is left in for penalties and goes 1 off - it looks makable but tricky - had I known partner had A I would have bid 3NT !!!

3 of our 5 poor scores were due to the Ops doing well - the other 2 were an unlucky sacrifice on hand 17 and the 2x above where looking at the full hand, the  entry to dummy is safe (we both thought it would be ruffed) - then take the finesse, shame.

Some hands were played very well by us both and pleasing when it works!

A shame that it was such a poor turnout though, Friday night is a great evening with friendly and good players, do come along and support the club!

We finished with a strong set though and moved from 3rd to first on the last round - well done partner!

8th September 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session

A fun session but not quite in our favour!

We had a series of tops and bottoms, most of the bottoms were not us doing wrong but the Ops doing right.

Hand 14 was stunning play by partner too, well done making 11 tricks here!

My play was improved today too, hope it carries on to tonight!

7th September 2017


Playing with a regular partner and Team mates in round 5 of 6 of the CBC Chairman's Shield

As I arrived, partner came up to me to say she wasn't well and she really wasn't - I said it was fine to cancel but she didn't want to let anyone down in Teams.

The first 4 rounds she was in a lot of discomfort but after that it passed.

We finished 8th on a small minus score but there were some real highlights to the night.  Brief summary:

  1. Hard to find the slam, flat board
  2. We have nothing on here but NS at the other table managed to make 3
  3. Poor play by me - I had 10 tricks off the top but didn't see it
  4. Our team mates found the suit game, slightly in our favour
  5. We all lost track of who was sacrificing here!!!  Fortunately, Ops ended up with the last bid which I doubled - says we can make 6 though......
  6. Team mates make one more trick here so slightly in our favour
  7. We missed a trick here (double dummy says 12 on but nobody made 12)
  8. Team mates got carried away here (their words!)
  9. I should have been in 3NT - but my  void????
  10. Flat
  11. Good defending here - slightly in our favour
  12. Team mates made the right bid for Teams, it didn't pay off though
  13. Team mates shine here being in 3NT, slightly in our favour
  14. 4-3 fit plays better here, slightly against us
  15. Team mates found game here (which wasn't on but they made it!), fortunate really as we didn't defend well but good score for us
  16. We were the only pair to find a Grand Slam - partner opened 1, I bid 4NT, told 2 key cards, 7 - 7NT was on but in teams and with a singleton, I thought was safer.  Partner played it well to bring it home too.
  17. Flat
  18. I forgot to take the K before coming over to my hand, should have made this - sorry team crying
  19. We stayed in 1NT here, team mates defended well too for a double swing!
  20. Both pairs made 10 tricks (us in , team mates in ) - another double swing!
  21. Flat
  22. Slightly better in NT - slightly against us

More important than the results, partner was feeling better by the end and has messaged to say home ok and all is well - what a relief!

Playing twice tomorrow......

6th September 2017


Playing with a regular monthly partner in a regular club session.

Vee hosted the Improvers and played to make up 3 tables.  He was above 50% going into the last round and then they dropped, he had an enjoyable session and they played to time finishing at 10pm.

Barbara and Glynis had another amazing score, well done both!

Not our finest evening but enjoyable and no real bidding errors which is always nice.

One minor point on our first hand (hand 7), partner hadn't registered that I had 5s (I bid 2 over 1 by partner) - easily done and am not being critical.  Partner played the correctly too, had the finesse been taken the other way, 10 tricks here would have netted a good score - close margins!

The arrow switch didn't help us either, having 3 bad hands for doing nothing wrong other than our Ops bidding the nice hands properly!

I was pleased with 5x sacrifice on hand 22, it had to be right though as I had no points and no defence with favourable vulnerability.

Hand 17 was just a mess, I could not have played that any worse!!!

Hand 9 I asked if partner had a  stop, although the Ace is there, I think it may be better to repeat the  (or ) - I am bidding to game but need to know where, perhaps I should have bid differently myself though crying

Hand 4 was a good score but we are better in - I opened this terrible hand with 11 HCP and 5s to the 10 but have a singleton and it felt right.  I cannot reverse into s though.  As it happened, I think I played it well to make 8 tricks for an above average score.  Should I open here though?

Teams at CBC tomorrow.

5th September 2017


Badminton tonight and I was on fire tonight!  Won the first 6 games with very little rest including a 30-28 win!!!

I then played against the clubs best player - I had a great partner too but it was too much and lost 21-14.  I then lost 2 more and won the last mixed (I have never lost with Kerry!).

Shattered again now though.

Playing with my regular monthly partner tomorrow whilst Vee hosts the Improvers at YHBC.

4th September 2017


Playing with a new(ish) partner in a regular club session.

My regular partner is away this week and next - Mark has kindly agreed to partner me in her absence.

After the first 2 rounds (4 bottoms) I think he was wandering what he had signed up to!!!  We did pick up after that though we were never destined for greatness after our start.

Some odd things happened too, 4 with a 4-3 fit against us, strong NT that cut us out and other tables not making games (which were on) to make our sacrifices good!

Early on, I thought we had agreed that all doubles were penalties - I had mis-understood!!!  When I left 2 doubled in and it made, I felt so dumb - sorry partner crying

Partner bid well on 19 and 20 to put me into 2 games, I played them adequately but the score was achieved with the bidding really.

Hand 23 was amazing to watch, most were in 3NT but partner was the only player to make it - well done partner.

Will do better next week.

3rd September 2017


After a quick  breakfast we are all set for the journey back, a very clear drive home - washing and chores to do then just catching up with TV and a rare early night later I think!

2nd September 2017


Spent the day walking the lanes. A lovely reception - I didn't know many but had a great time and very social, Matt & Juliet looked stunning - a few drinks but not excessive!

Non stop finger food which were all delicious finalising in a gorgeous cake (deconstructed) all fabulous !!!!

A few more drinks at our hotel then bed 

1st September 2017


Arrived in Brighton and a pleasant evening with a nice meal and a few drinks, a loud singer in a small bar and a drag act - it is Brighton !!! Wedding reception tomorrow.....!

Pleased to see 2 of my regular partners 1st and 2nd at YHBC too - well done both!

1st September 2017 (Afternoon)


Badminton at 9am then shower and pack ready for the weekend

Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Vee played today too and enjoyed it and had above 50%

Our defence once again needs a bit of work - partner played very well on most hands today but 4♠x after a small  lead should have made - hey ho

Some wild hands today that need looking at, we were lucky 2 slams weren't bid against us on 7 and 9 

Contracts doubled a lot today - some made some didn't - hand 20 was such an extreme hand, we got very lucky here but I had to double 5♠ and then 6 too - sorry Ops

Now off to Brighton for the weekend for Vee's Uni friends wedding (stopping off to deliver a birthday card to one of my other Bridge partners) - should be nice weather but not too hot (just how I like it!!!), will be nice to spend the weekend with my other half!!!!

31st August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A packed car park tonight and I ended up blocking in a fellow bridge player (was ok and I left as soon as play finished to let him out!).

We gave up our seat and moved to the sit out table and the hands we missed were full of traps, glad we missed them!!!

A night of ups and downs but more ups than downs, were top going into the last round but had 50% then 0% on the last 2 hands, dropped a few places.

One of my new partners finished equal top, no doubt there will be a few e-mail exchanges to follow..... Well done Chris & Dave!

Fair to say, our declare play was solid, both 75/76% - some odd/good bids by the Ops on a few hands and I defended badly on the last hand - the rest was good.

Hand 2 -  Really well played by partner, we were the only pair in game and not easy to make it

Hand 5 - Well bid partner, only 3 of us in the slam.

Hand 7 - Good play by the Ops, managed to get a  away for a near top.

Hand 10 - Partner bid 3 so I felt obliged to lead the A, I should have led a trump or a , drat!

Hand 13 - We needed to push them up here

Hands 15-18 - A few gifts here, we can't take the credit really

Hands 21-22 - We made a great sacrifice then the Ops returned the favour!!!

Hand 23 - Unfortunate for the Ops, the bidding gave us a good lead

Hand 24 - Ambitious by the Ops here and we defended it correctly

Day off tomorrow as off to Brighton for the weekend (Vee's Uni friend is getting married) - I booked the day off as wasn't sure what time we would go, we have decided to go early evening so am still free to play Bridge (Vee playing with another partner too!).  Have arranged badminton in the morning then bridge then off for the weekend.

30th August 2017

YHBC Improvers:

Hosting the Improvers with Vee tonight and we both play to make up the tables taking an Improver each.

In fairness, the 2 we had were both of the "Improved" category and all played and bid really well.

It is always a relief when the hosts come 1st and 2nd but nothing is ever guaranteed.

I had a day of bridge today as I attended the Directors course on the new laws.  Although not a director, I feel I should be on top of the laws as a Host of the Improvers and also for my own benefit as a player (especially in Congress).

Alan & Pamela celebrating their 10th Wedding Anniversary today too and lovely biscuits provided, congratulations and thanks to you both!

Our Analysis (in brief!):

  1. Superb defence - Ops made a small blunder but we still had to capitalise on it and partner pounced!
  2. My play is reasonable here
  3. I played ok here too
  4. I opened this hand and I stand by it - partner bid perfectly to 3 and I raised with only a 6 loser hand - it's a shame it went off but I think this was good bidding and play
  5. I lost to the singleton K - drat!!!
  6. All down to partner here, I made the ticks I should but partner recognised that we should be in game and did the hard work with the bidding - well done partner!
  7. Unfortunate here, our Ops bid and played well and not much we could do here
  8. I borrowed a K to open in 3rd seat here, nobody else did and so another zero - on reflection, my hand wasn't worth opening so entirely my own fault here - sorry partner crying
  9. How embarrassing - our first board played and a nightmare!!!  I pre-empt with a 6 card minor (I always do) and when partner bid, I pictured a different hand so punted 3NT.  I went off 4 for 400!!!!  This was embarrassing but even more so when I realised it was a top score!
  10. Unfortunate again here, we held this to 10 tricks when 11 are makable (per the matrix) but others made less
  11. Partner's play was nothing short of terrific here (and I let her know too).  Got the clubs spot on, played the s beautifully and the timing of each suit was superb - really really proud here, well done partner!
  12. A little gadget would have been better here, I double to show an opening hand and a 4 card major - if partner had bid the Ops suit I would have bid my 4 card  suit and we end up in a better spot - it's a learning curve though and partner had a feeling that 2 was a better bid but wasn't quite sure
  13. Ops should be in game here, was hopeful for a top but only 50%
  14. Personally, I wouldn't open with partner's hand here - 4-4-4-1 are tricky but when 3 of the points are in the singleton K, I think this is only worth 11 and I need a good 13+ natural points to open a 4-4-4-1 hand.  Still, the result was ok
  15. Superb play by partner again here!  It says 12 tricks are on offer but that is quite different to actually making them!  Partner made a plan, worked it out and got it, the others did not - well done again partner!
  16. Slightly unfortunate here, having had the discussion about 4-4-4-1 hands, partner lost a Q when counting the points and got flustered here - this wasn't a 4-4-4-1 and had 15, 3NT was the contract but we got 50% for the hand so no harm done!

A really enjoyable evening, hope partner enjoyed too, I only wish I was dummy on more hands as partner's play would have pushed us up even further - one of my regular Thursday partner's had nearly 70% in the main group and we would have rivalled them!!!  Well done Barbara and Ron though, great score!!!

29th August 2017


Badminton tonight and I was tired and hot but did my best.  Won more than I lost and all games were above 17 (very tough and hard fought night).

Well, until my "last" game which was a pure disaster and lost to 7 - rather than leave it there, I decided to play another "last" game and was a marathon match which we came through 21-18 to win!

Always nice to end on a high and am suffering a bit now - long shower and a few pints of juice later I am now writing my diary entry!

Having not played bridge at all since Friday night, looking forward to hosting the Improvers tomorrow night.

Day off tomorrow too as am attending Camberley's New Laws director training session.  I am not a director but am an interested participant - we have a few others like me going as well as directors from CBC and YHBC.

28th August 2017

Surrey BH Swiss Pairs:

Due to play today but unfortunately my partner was unwell and I couldn't find a replacement with such short notice.

I still think it is best not to play when not well though and it would have been a tough event today - no problem at all with not playing.

I see that one of our top Surrey pairs won every match but finished 2nd (more blue points though!) - well done Jeffrey & Frances.

Am really pleased to see David Pinder & Alan Coales finish 4th in such a high class field though, well done guys!

Quite a few of our club players played today and all won matches, good to see so many play.

I had a nice day at home playing more board games (which I won by 6 points, yet another close game but in my favour this time!).

Finished the day off with a take-away and now catching up with recorded Masterchef Australia episodes!

27th August 2017


No Bridge today and a full day of games with friends

We do our house chores and weekly shop first thing then a lovely cheese board for lunch (with Duck Pate for me too, yum!).

I have 2 friends over at 1pm for our strategy board game and Vee has a relaxing bath.

It was a great game and I was winning throughout but pipped at the post by both of them and ended up last!!!  Really fun though.

2 more friends arrive at 4pm and we play Poker (all 6 of us) and I was solid but no win, Vee won a game though and played well throughout too.

Great to see our friends today, it doesn't happen often enough these days - it is more about the banter than the games themselves really!

Eaten snacks and drank lots of coffee, coke and a few glasses of wine - now a little bloated and watching TV!

Swiss Pairs at Oxshott tomorrow (first event of the new Surrey season).

26th August 2017

Day Off:

No Bridge today and Vee at work (helping my Dad).

I spent the morning doing a few bits round the house and then went over to help my friend John (a fellow bridge player) with his laptop (I was successful too!).  It is a mini milestone birthday for John next week!

We had a great chat and a catch up and then I drove him to Dorothy's to meet up with Val & Keith.  I stayed for a glass of wine and a chat before coming home just in time to welcome my friends for board games!

Was a lovely morning, I feel very privileged to be considered a friend by such warm and clever people - friends are very important to me and I think the world of the one's I have.

Board Games again tomorrow followed by Poker with friends and also looking forward to a cheese board with tiger bread and pate for lunch !!!

25th August 2017


Playing with a regular monthly partner in a regular club session.

We had a great start tonight with the first 2 rounds (6 boards) and everything was really up-eat and jolly, a good thing as my partner has been very un-well for a while and had a bit of turn during the night, he fought through it though and I have so much admiration for him - we get on well too and great banter (I am a bit mean to him but only in a friendly way!).

On hand 27 I was really pleased with making 11 tricks and look at the score to find it is only 50% - June Booty played it just before me and made 11 too!!!!  It turned out to be a good score though but put me on alert to the fact that June was on fire tonight!!!

It was a close call but we pipped them in the end (it was really close with the last few boards still in play but we actually pulled away when all scores came in).

Hand 24 was another hand I was pleased with (I know pride is a sin).  I worked out the whole hand here and made 12 tricks - sometimes things just happen but this time I earned my score!

Derek was amazing tonight too, some great bids - he put me into some tough spots but I was declaring better tonight than I have for a while.

Chris & Carole from our Improvers had a fun night though a disappointing score - they were delighted to push our Chairman up and take him off on hand 25 and they did well on 26 too!  We had a tough time against them too but overall the mean Ops got the better of them.

It has been a while since I got 2 tops in 1 day and am pleased to do it today - mostly due to my partners bidding on both sessions but I played my part too!

A day with friends from the Bridge club tomorrow and then Poker on Sunday before Surrey Swiss Pairs on Monday, never stops........!!!

25th August 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We had a good start with some odd events during the round - comedy of errors from both sides but we got the better of it (or least worse!!!).

Bit of a blip in the middle with some defending blunders and I mis-played a few hands which is the theme of the week for me I'm afraid.

Still - we came out on top overall just pipping another solid pair who had a good session.

Hand 5 was another glitch from me - I thought I had 5 s and  void - not sorted properly, I then decided to pass partner's 2 response and we did well to stay low and partner played well to make it!

We avoided the trap on hand 1 too, I tried to get partner to play the hand but it went back and forth until I bid 3NT - I had a little help but was pleased with my play to make this +2.

We had a calm session today with some humour (well, "Ian" humour at least!) - we always do better when it is all nice and relaxed.

Dinner then back to bridge at YHBC tonight.....

24th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A poor session tonight after a good start.

Hard to say where it went wrong really, we both had wobbles in our declarer play and missed some contracts - not like us to be fair.

Playing South on hand 14, I should have down graded my hand with 4-3-3-3 shape and opened 1NT (I hadn't heard this before!), we then find our 2 contract crying

A number of other judgements that went against us too - a pleasant evening though and we know it will be better next time!

Playing twice again tomorrow!

23rd August 2017


Vee hosting the Improvers as I play with my 1st Weds of the month partner (her partner was away tonight so squeezed an extra session in!).

I like to be near the improvers when I'm not hosting and so set everything up and reserved a NS near them - unfortunately, I got the set-up wrong tonight!

I also score for CBC and my laptop has both clubs on it, the last action was to amend a score at a CBC session and so the club was left as CBC - I didn't notice when setting up and so no names could be found!

This puzzled Vee and I was also concerned.  When I get home, I fire up the session and see straight away the error!  A simple fix and all done now, silly Ian !

Was a shame to see a half table in the Improvers, I always feel it is better to have a half in the main group as the rounds are quicker, but no real harm done.  Vee played with Kevin tonight and were on 77% going in to the last round - with the digital nature of playing in a small group, they dropped to 52% after the last 3 boards, shame but still above 50%

Jill and I had a good night tonight.  Both sticking to the system card (other than when I mis-counted my hand and had 20 when I thought it was 18!!! - We had 75% for the board but would have been the only pair in a slam had I opened correctly!).

No red scores which helps and most were above average.

Hand 7 sticks out as exceptional play by partner - this started with the choice to open 1NT and not 1 (very wise) and then brilliant play to be the only + score for NS, well done partner!

Hand 14 was also a good score for us but my instincts told me to pass and I ignored them (after 3 minutes of thinking).  It had passed round to me and I have a weak 2 hand, if I had passed we would have had a better score (0 compared to minus 50) - my play is not always brilliant and my bidding an be off but my instincts are normally sound, I should listen to myself!

Our last hand of the session was unlucky for the Ops.  Not everyone had bid game here so 50% was a certain score, then partner played well and had 10 tricks set-up for a joint top, then they discarded the A in error and gave us 11 tricks for 100%, bad luck Ops but well played partner too, it was played well enough for a joint top without the error.

Overall a very good night and everything just worked, thanks partner for a pleasant evening and good bridge!

22nd August 2017


Badminton tonight and it was so humid - a tough day at work and Vee got delayed at the Airport with work and so didn't see him until I got home (5 mins before I hit the shower!).

Played well and ran as much as I could but had to change T-Shirt twice tonight as so hot!

Lost more than I won but all really tight games and won the last 2 (when I was drained and drenched!!!) - really pleased how I pushed through it.

Shattered again now though!

Playing with Jill tomorrow as Vee hosts the Improvers.

21st August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 8 of the Monday Championships

I had forgotten I was scoring tonight (despite knowing last night!!!) - thanks for stepping up Val!

We improved one of our scores by 2% and so remain top at the moment (by 2%!!!!).

Nothing particularly wrong tonight and only 3 bad hands, we didn't get given very much tonight and I was tired and not on sparkling form (a very tough day at work today).

I wanted tonight to be a big score, not just for the Championship but we are not playing again until the 18th or 25th Sep now, so quite a break!

Mostly my fault tonight but we both played some hands very well (I was pleased to make 13 in 6NT, well bid partner!).

Jo played 3NT exceptionally well on hand 22 too, got it all spot on!

Looking forward to Badminton tomorrow night.

20th August 2017


No Bridge today and Vee at  a friends Stag Do (escape room in London!!!).

Early start for me, take Vee to the station and then hoe to set-up the games and my friend comes over at 10am to play strategy games.

A really close game which I narrowly lost (5 points!).

Then lunch and another friend comes over to play the same game.  Unfortunately, another close game but I lose this too (by 1 point!!!!!!!).

Great fun though and a nice change to play board games - finish off the washing and get dinner ready - relaxing evening planned now until Vee home.

Scoring at CBC tomorrow in the 8th round of the Club Champs - 1 more good result needed so fingers crossed!

19th August 2017

Day Off:

No Bridge today and Vee at work (helping my Dad).  Day at home to relax, get the housework done and do the shopping.

Playing a few games on my laptop too but generally just a chilled day.

Discussions about Bridge this week too but largely personal.

Games with friends tomorrow...

18th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 5 of the Beryl Doughty Cup.

Neither of us on form - our lowest score ever (by a long way!!!).

Alan will admit himself he could have done better and I certainly could!

No real analysis needed though - we know it was bad!

2 highlights though - my play on hand 10 and Alan finished the night with an amazingly well played 2NT on hand 3 (honestly, especially given the whole evening, the line of play was truly great).

Better next time.............

A large glass of wine and Only Connect now!!!!

A weekend of games this weekend (board and cards) with my friends whilst Vee works on Saturday and goes to a Stag Do on Sunday (enjoy Vee!!!!)

18th August 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a substitute regular partner in a regular club session.

We came top today and started off well, some of scores were given to us though if honest.

Hand 4 - I think partner should ignore my suits and bid 4, but I could easily be wrong here - I don't play Gerber so took 4 as natural and this went wrong!

Hand 5 - I should pass 4 and leave partner to double!

Hand 23 - Nothing wrong here but we need the Ops to carry on bidding, they didn't!!!

Hand 27 - I over valued my hand here, should have passed partners raise to 3 but was too tempting!

We had a number of great boards though, back to back good play by partner and I in NT on 16 and 17 stand out.  Our defense was sound throughout too.

Dinner then back to bridge at YHBC tonight.....

17th August 2017


Playing with an irregular partner in a regular club session.

An above average night playing the system I am trying to master with another partner.  We both needed a good result as have both performed below par for a while.

Our defence was really good tonight (although some gifts for sure).

My partner tonight is very good at analysing the results so am passing that on to him tonight - will add later once done!

A few key hands from my point of view:

9. I pre-empted in 3 and Ops end up in 4 - partner has an opening hand and, not unreasonably, bids 4 - I think we are better leaving 4 (especially as they doubled me!)

11. Should be a good sacrifice against the slam - unfortunately, nobody bid either slam!

18. I upgraded my hand here to open 1NT, if I don't, partner opens and pays in 3NT and it makes by West - poor judgement from me, sorry partner.

22. Partner should open 2 here - then I pass the 2 re-bid

Partner's own analysis (Thanks Chris):

A very enjoyable evening at Camberley, trying out the partnership's third different bidding system in just five sessions we've played together!  Truth be told lucky was on our side - we each stretched the system more than once in the bidding, and more came off than didn't: the overall good result was rooted in the sometimes undervalued old-fashioned art of sound card-play.  Some of the worse results were when I over-cooked things in competitive auctions: boards 22, 11 and 9

(3 of our 4 worst results) suffered from this - sorry Ian!

A few boards of interest:

17 & 18: Ian up-rated 11-HCP hands to open a 12-14 1N on both of our first two boards: in the first case he got away with it, but in the second it took the final 3N contract over to the wrong side of the table for a less good result.

21: Well played Ian.  9 tricks just aren't there, and double-dummy I can't see where they came from!

3: The second overtrick can be critical at pairs: here I made the mistake of drawing a round of trumps when I do better by cross-ruffing all the way to the bank.

4: Here I take issue with one of my partner's bids, although in practise it made no difference on the hand.  After north's 1, east's 2 is within the parameters of our system: this was passed round to 2♠ from north, over which partner bid 3.  Sitting west I'm expecting 5 opposite: a double described the hand much better, as top end of the jump overcall with exactly four s.

8: As west I mis-counted my HCP to open a Benji 2 (showing 23+ - I'd somehow counted my 22 as 24).  Partner making the forced 2 response gave south the opportunity to make a lead-directing double, and north did as instructed - the only way for the defence to take a second trick: well done oppos.

16: A classic forcing defence (repeated heart leads) made life hard for the opposition: double-dummy 10 tricks are possible for declarer, but with your trumps being drawn at every turn by leads from the opposition it's not easy.

20: Partner missed an opportunity to splinter over my 1 opening: it's hard to find a slam after 1-(1)-5.  The result flatters my declarer play: 13 tricks are makable through a squeeze if you place the AKK all with south (after north has been the one to overcall!), but that's not how the 13th trick came my way.

5: If Ian and I played together more often I might train him out of 2-suited overcalls without a 5-5 shape - 2 over north's 1 promises 5-5 in the majors, but Ian went ahead anyway.  This could easily have left me playing in a very sticky heart contract, but oppos rescued us.  A double of 1 or a straightforward 1 overcall are both preferable with the east cards.

13: Although 4 went off, I stand by our bidding sequence - and actually the result wasn't bad.  Ian opens a natural 1, I respond 1, Ian rebids 1, I count 8 losers to justify a jump to 3 and, counting 5 losers in turn, he expects his 4 bid to be an easy make.  4 needs either a mis-defence or for A to turn up in the north hand, though, and neither occurred.

An enjoyable night all in all and I appreciate Partner's write up above!

16th August 2017

YHBC Improvers:

Hosting the Improvers with Vee tonight, well that was the plan!!!

Vee ended up working late and came straight to the club from work arriving at 20:15 (a long day!!!).

Ian N very kindly offered to hep out, I set everything going then was asked to play with Bobbi in the main group to avoid a half table and help her (she had no lift until the end of the session).  We end doing reasonably well (4th but 1% off the top with 59%).  My results HERE

We only had 2 bad scores, 1 we were pushed too far and the other, I cannot open 1NT (playing 16-18 tonight) and if I had opened a weak 1NT, it would have been better (hand 8).  Hand 17 opened a strong 1NT though and it got us 86% - rough with the smooth!

Barbara & Glynis played in the main group again, just about transitioned and holding their own mid table - they did well against us too!!!  Well done.

After a long gap, finally ready to run another theme night.  In tonights 16 hands, 8 have been set as Transfers (1NT, Red Suit Transfer).  A write up of these hands is available in the Improvers section of the YHBC Menu (HERE) and notes on Transfers are also available (HERE)

Our Chairman, Alan Brown has very kindly given me some notes and points having looked at the whole of this sessions hands (not just the transfers) - these are worth a look....


  1. Lovely misfit all round. N superficially looks good but must beware overbidding.
  2. Nice simple 3N
  3. N must realise he is strong enough to go for game. Hard to bid a slam though.
  4. After the transfer to , will E find the good forcing bid of 3? And will W accept to game?
  5. Fair enough to give N 12HCP. Will N go to 4?
  6. Interesting in that W, after 2 passes will open. However I think he should open 3 not 1 to make life difficult for opposition. Have you taught them about Michaels if W does open 1?
  7. Can N find the best defensive lead of a trump? Assuming the contract is 2 by W.
  8. Nothing to add
  9. Can N/S deal with interference - eg 2 over the 1N.
  10. Nothing to add
  11. Can N resist temptation?
  12. Lovely. Have you taught them about "super accept"? Will E realise that W must have lots of Kings to open. Can we open a book on how many reach 7?
  13. Interesting. Would S go Stayman or do transfer?
  14. Also interesting. Would E, after 1N - 2 - 2 - 3 go on? Want to take bets on how many reach 4?
  15. Have a look at Puppet Stayman.....
  16. Interesting.  Lots of possibilities here.  Does their convention card say anything about opening 1N with a singleton honour?
15th August 2017


Badminton tonight and played well tonight only losing one game.

I ran a lot tonight but my shots were not always good - made up for it with tenacity and determination though!

Really shattered now though, paying the price for running (if you have seen me, you will know I am not a runner any more!!!)

Hosting the improvers tomorrow with Vee and have set some hands with Transfers and a write up - hope it goes well.

14th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

An above average night again but could always be better - really enjoyed it though and Jo was on good form (bridge and conversation).

We got on well and understood each other on almost all the hands, the Ops did well on a few hands and some other table results were very odd (and hurt us!).

Board 21 was unfortunate - I didn't support partner's s with my singleton King - it makes 5!!!  I was in 2NT which doesn't make, but I made it - poor score but pleased with my play.

Board 14 was very tough too - if partner ducks the first  trick, East is eventually end played with the s - couldn't see it even double dummy but having done the play it again, it is there!

Richard and Julie defended and played perfectly against us too, not much we could have done there!

A really pleasant night though and not a bad score.  Badminton tomorrow.

13th August 2017

EBU Congress 4/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with my regular partner in the EBU's premier Teams congress.

Session 4 - we swap round for the last day and Margaret was a star today - we still didn't win but 2 hands were so well played by Margaret:

Hand 10 - A lowly 1 - this just cannot be made!!!  Margaret played out of her skin and end played North to make the contract!!!

Hand 19 - A lowly 2 - again, this is an impossible contract but Margaret found the only way to make it - helped when South played a low , Margaret paused and then played low to my singleton 7 which won!!!  An entry to dummy found and now she can make the contract - well played!!!

Final standings and Point awards HERE

We all felt drained at the end of this weekend and all under performed really, we feel embarrassed to be honest but it happens.

12th August 2017

EBU Congress 3/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with a regular partner and friends in the EBU's premier congress.

This is getting tougher and tougher - the lower our score, the tougher the Ops!!!

Not a good evening either crying

12th August 2017 (Afternoon)

EBU Congress 2/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with a regular partner and friends in the EBU's premier congress.

This is getting tougher and tougher - the lower our score, the tougher the Ops!!!  We have finally won a match though

Not a good day crying

11th August 2017

EBU Congress 1/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with a regular partner and friends in the EBU's premier congress.

This is just about as tough as it gets and we are fighting with 84 other Teams to try and do well!

A tough start and a few hands lost it, we should be in 4 on one hand and partner could have made 3NT on another - partner's gave 1 away too and so a heavy loss - not too much we could have done though, just a tough team.

Match 2 should be easy though.......NO!  A team including some of Surrey's best players turn up and we lose heavily again!

Match 3 was easier but we still had a few games missed and so lost to 5.

We are in last place going into the 2nd day and it looks like we could play a team of Internationals next, this is such a tough event!!!

Will try our best today, that's all we can do after all.  No value in trying to play differently, just carry on and it will come good at some point.

10th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 8 of the Thursday Championships.

A really enjoyable night but I was not on form at all tonight.  Despite this, we were placed to get a high 50 score but 3 of the last 4 boards were not good.

We finished with me in 6 and I have to finesse the to make it - holding 9 cards, I played for the drop - wrong!  Only 2 made 12 tricks but still....

Then I bid 2 with only 6 points and partner rightly put me to game but went 1 off - drat!

On the penultimate round I failed to bid game too crying

I was mean to one of my other partners being the only person to double - sorry.

We got our defense right tonight on most boards, main issue really was my play - must do better this weekend in Eastbourne for the Teams!

2 events left in the series and it is unlikely we will win, however, 50% will see us in the top 3 but really need two 70% scores to win!

9th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

A pleasant evening with a few highs and lows - fortunately, more highs than lows and we just edge the session to win.

We defended very well tonight and had a few gifts along the way - partner was disappointed with his play but I think that was just his own high standards, there was only 1 board where he mis-played the hand in 3NT, the rest was fine play.

I was quite pleased with my own play tonight but only played 4 hands.

3.5 Tables in the Improvers and 3 pairs in joint 2nd!!!  Well done all and to Carole & Jen for rising above them all!

Marjie came to help and ended up working very hard tonight as the Host for the Improvers as Vee played with a solo player (finishing as one of the 2nd pairs!) - thanks Marjie!!!

John & Delores "promised" they would be 3rd from bottom or better tonight (after our session last night), they just missed this but only by 1%  Looking at their card, they didn't do much wrong, hard when only a few scores to compare against - I think they are showing real promise.

2 of our Improvers came up to the main group tonight too - 1 of them has been away for a few weeks and when we played them, she said she wasn't thinking clearly - they are strong players and am pleased to see them continue in the main group - it takes time to "bed in" and they will definitely be contending soon.

Club Championships tomorrow at CBC and then back to Eastbourne for EBU Congress (Swiss Teams).

9th August 2017

Social Bridge:

Playing with Vee to help two of the Improvers with "how to play duplicate".

John & Delores are fairly new to the club but lovely people who can play cards but are not used to duplicate bridge.

We felt it would be a good idea to have them over and so I gave up badminton tonight to help them out.

A few basics:

Losing Trick Count

When partner opens, use Losing trick count if you have a fit for them - NOTES HERE

Level of the Fit

When partner overcalls, use level of the fit - assume 5 cards to overcall, bid up to the number of trumps (if you hold 3 trumps, bid up to 2 (5+3), if you hold 4 trumps, bid up to 3 and so on).

5 cards to overcall (8+ green, 10+ red)

Do NOT overcall with a 4 card suit!

What is the best score?

Consider the vulnerability, if you are green and they are red, going off 3 doubled is better than them making game!  So, 5 over 4 (assuming they can make it) is only 500 if doubled and 3 off (vs 620 for a vulnerable game) - it is purely the score that counts so don't worry about going down if it gets a better score.  This applies even at a low level, going off 50 is often a great score even compared to Ops making 2 for 90 !!!

A pleasant evening and coffee and cake and chat too.  I still seem to attract the points though and John had less than 6 most of the time, sorry John!  I think they learned a few bits tonight and will try and put it to work tomorrow at the Improvers Group (Vee hosting with Marjie).

7th August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

An above average night but below par overall.

We enjoyed it though and only a couple of niggles.

I tried 6 which makes from (unlikely to get a  lead) but I went 1 off, perhaps I shouldn't bid it though knowing we are an Ace and a King missing.

We missed 6 on board 18 too (last hand of the night) which was a shame.

I wasn't strong enough to bid s on 19 (our first board!!!) so we missed our fit.

Board 26 our Ops bid 4, nothing we can do here, well done Ops.

The rest was all good and 3rd is still reasonable.

VERY pleased to see Marilyn and Garrett finishing 2nd though, bravo!

About to prepare the Improver hands next ready for the Transfer night next week, will write up the hands too.

6th August 2017

EBU Congress 4/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with my life partner in the EBU's premier congress.

Session 4 - 4 matches and a poor start but won the last one well.

Match 1 - Vee hadn't played much all weekend and is now landed with 5 hands and all were really tough hands, played one fantastically making all 13 tricks, the others could be better!  2nd player plays low was said twice during one hand too!

Match 2 - A close match but we couldn't quite get there

Match 3 - We thought we had won this, quite disappointed to see 11-9 loss here as 3 hands were theirs and 5 were ours but their wins were better than ours - close though.

Match 4 - We were awesome to finish (both of us!!!).  This included defending 3NT and taking 4 tricks (HERE), Vee kept all the right cards, most made 11 or 12 tricks and we held them to 9!!!!  I made a 4 contract that not many bid (HERE).

Final standings and Point awards HERE

We all felt drained at the end of this weekend and all under performed really, we feel we did ok though.  Could have won 3 more matches reasonably easily and would have felt much better had we got these!

Back to normal tomorrow and then Teams next Friday to Sunday.....

5th August 2017

EBU Congress 3/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with my life partner in the EBU's premier congress.

Session 3 - 3 matches and all of these got away from us.

A night of wrong choices really, either in the bidding or play - largely it was good but just a few wobbles each round cost.  Match 2 tonight was very good though, we defended really well and played well.

We now have 3 wins - not as many as we would have liked but all very enjoyable and good experience.

Another 4 tomorrow and hope to finish well

5th August 2017 (Afternoon)

EBU Congress 2/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with my life partner in the EBU's premier congress.

Session 2 - 4 matches and all of these got away from us.

Match 1 we were simply out classed.

Match 2 was closer but we went down 5 in 3NT - I should have opened 3NT and then we get a  lead and I have 9 tricks off the top.

Match 3 was our first unpleasant pair who kept changing pace during the defence of the hands, very off putting.  

Match 4 was good fun but again, a couple of blunders - we tried 6 which didn't stand a chance but I only made 10 tricks and would still have been a bad score anyway as most made 11!

Another 3 tonight and hope to do better again as we dropped over 100 places today!

Actually, still enjoyed it today but it really is tough going!

4th August 2017

EBU Congress 1/4:

Our Score Card

Playing with my life partner in the EBU's premier congress.

This is just about as tough as it gets and we are fighting with 213 other Pairs to try and do well!

We had a 2 hour journey down leaving at 1pm and had a relaxing time and then a nice Italian meal (5 of us, all staying in the same hotel).

Play starts at 19:45 and we wander down an hour before to get settled and pick our starting position and then we are off!

We draw 2 lovely Irish ladies who I have played before and never beaten (not that I tell Vee that!!!).  I at least know that it will be a nice friendly game and it was really pleasant.

We had 1 director call where the made a claim with 5 cards to go - they claimed we could have a  and the rest was there's, in fact, she doesn't have to lose a but the director ruled that she should treat all the cards as the same value and so we do win our 10 - seems a bit unfair but we both agreed that the Director rule was final and it was all very amicable.

We actually played and defended well and I was delighted with Vee's card play, he was calmer than I was and he doesn't play much Congress bridge!  We had an agreement that this was just to be fun and whatever happens happens.

Round 1 complete and we edged it 12-8 with 6 of the 8 boards being in our favour.

The bridgemates have issues and they cannot get them to work in our room so we are told to move up 1 table (old school style!).  This means we played a pair we should not have met (they won 17-3 so should really be much higher than us).  We accept our fate though and carry on playing - I know them both and know how strong they are but again, I keep quiet.

We play really well here and bid and made 2 slams (I was one of only 6 pairs to make 6NT out of a tough field of 107 tables....!), defeated 1NT by 3 (vulnerable) and was gifted tricks when I was in 2NT (made 9 tricks when only 4 on.....!).  We win 18-2!!!

Although we are pleased (and amazed!!!), it now means we are at the top of the field playing the real sharks.  The movement is now working properly so we play a pair who are really near the top.

We lost the match 16-4 but was so close to winning it.  Even here, our defence was really strong and Vee was exceptional - I mis-played 6 (HERE)which should make on a  lead but I got the wrong.  The match was lost though on 1 system error and the Ops system beating us - in 5 (HERE)instead of 4 (Ops bid with only a 2 card suit!!!).  Still, we have 2 wins out of 3 and are feeling good.  A night of drinking then follows and we go to bed at 01:30 (including our friends Simon and Margaret!!!).  Breakfast at 9am (3 hours later than normal for me!!!!) which was very nice and now relaxing for the morning (and writing this!!!).

Play starts again at 1pm today for 4 more matches - then another 3 tonight.

Although these events are really tough, I would recommend it to ALL players, it is great fun and an amazing experience - I just wish we were playing 10 years ago when Brighton had 500 or so pairs (or even 20 years ago when it was 1000!!!).

3rd August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Another good session tonight and not much wrong, including bidding 6NT and partner was the only one to make 12 tricks, fine declarer play!

Tonight also made it 4 out 4 1st place finishes for my partner - last Thursday (with me) then Monday, Wednesday and again tonight - well done Partner!!!

We defended 3NT well too, I bid  and lead a  finding partner's AK!  Lucky perhaps, partner returns a and so I make all 6 s and 2 s for 400.

We were in synch all night other than one defensive error, I wanted to ruff a and then partner makes the A to defeat hand 19 rather than A first taking out my trump.

Hand 11 should have stopped in 2s too but we both kept bidding - it was so bad it was comical and we did indeed laugh it off!!!

Really good to see Margaret W back tonight and they did well too - would have been top other than the last 2 rounds which could have been better for them, still, a nice strong performance - welcome back Margaret!

Off to Eastbourne tomorrow for the Pairs event at the EBUs summer meeting, we are going to have fun but it is tough.  If we can get a few wins it is enhanced Green Points, every one counts!

2nd August 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Not a good night tonight but not exactly our fault.  Some good some bad but more bad unfortunately.  No real system errors which was good but on the last hand I bid my poor suit rather agreeing partner's good suit, why did I do that!

We actually had an OK session until the last 2 rounds where it went wrong.

Hand 1 I should lead A and switch to a  and wait.

Hand 2 makes 6NT, our Ops made 3NT +3 but the rest of the room let us down!

Hand 3 our Ops made a forcing bid and it was passed!  I didn't defend it well either but the rest of the room were in 4 going off!

Hand 4 I should pass - it was the comment earlier, I can not bid here!!!

Hand 22 partner had a tough choice, best bid is to pass but not easy - 2x is our top

Really pleased to see our Improver pair do well - ahead of our chairman and 52%, well done Marriane and Rosalie!!!

4 tables in the Improvers again too which is good to see, they played well to time too finishing at 10pm.

We started the night with 2 sad announcements about members passing away including Nigel Tottman who was such a nice man and our Vice Chair until recently, will miss you Nigel.

2nd August 2017


Badminton tonight and played well tonight though I wasn't good on my first game but managed to win it - then I decided I was going to really try and I was really good tonight only losing 1 game and having 3 games go above 21 !

My friend is loving it too and is going on his own next week as I am helping 2 of our Improvers socially.

Just finalised the Surrey Victor Ludorum (though not on the committee any more, am more than happy to help).  I came a creditable 10th in the County but a long way from the top - results on Surrey HERE

Playing tomorrow night (I play the first Weds of each month with a now regular partner who I also play Congress with).  Vee hosting the Improvers.

31st July 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Not the best start tonight but then we had a fairly solid night with no mis-understandings, good defence and good play (other than my 4 which I had a  guess and got it wrong).

Such a relief after a few weeks of troubled nighs but tonight I felt much better and partner was in a good mood too.  Partner played exceptionally well tonight and really, it was only the very first hand (hand 23) that should have been 3NT, the rest was really good.

A few problems tonight with the bridge pads and a lot of director calls tonight, felt for the Director tonight and noticed a few others offered kind words too.  She is a tough cookie though and took it all calmly and handled everything well.

30th July 2017

Richard Currie Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a regular partner in the Richard Currie Memorial Swiss Pairs (Blue Pointed).

I have played bridge on the circuit for 5 years now and this is my 5th year playing in the Richard Currie.

My Mum passed away from cancer in 2004 (aged only 51) and Phyllis Tuckwell were absolutely marvellous with her.  They rely solely on donations and are such a worthy cause.  This event is in aid of the same charity who looked after Richard Currie who was only in his 30s when he sadly passed.  To this end, I always support the charity and, as a bridge player, always support this event.

It was really well run and organised and we enjoyed the day.  Started off too well really (winning 20-0 and 19-1) and so started having tougher matches.  We only had 1 terror round and 2 close matches.

Finished above half way and 72 Blue Points from the event, so cannot complain!

Margaret hardly put a toe wrong today, I blundered a few times, again, mis-playing a 4 contract and not defending 3 properly.

The highlight of the day was getting home in 6 against a local pair, it shouldn't make really and it was all down to the lead - Ops partner let him know that too!!!!

We should have won the last 2 matches (I let 3 through on match 5 and Ops defended my 3NT well) but 3 out of 6 with a close match was a fair result.

Really pleased to see Roger and Rebecca (a CBC pair) do brilliantly, they only lost 1 match and finished 10th out of 40 - well done!!!

29th July 2017


No Bridge today but a full day with friends.  Some house work first thing then lunch.  Played strategy board games 2pm to 7pm (I won too!) then off to the Quays for dinner and back to theirs to play Settlers of Catan.

Looking forward to playing in Farnham tomorrow.

28th July 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Not a good night tonight bridge wise but a fun and pleasant evening.  Partner didn't start off well making a few errors and things just didn't go right.  Towards the end I got reckless as I thought there was nothing to lose but it didn't pay off!

No real value in going through the hands but well done to the Ops on a few of the hands, some good slams bid against us - although not good for us, it was still good to watch and respect the Ops.

This week I started with a 40% score, then 60% 3 times and ended with a 40% !

Playing games tomorrow with friends and out for dinner then playing in the Richard Currie on Sunday.

28th July 2017 (Afternoon)


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

Not many errors today - partner NEVER leads doubletons and did so on board 5 so I got the defence wrong.

I didn't finesse the second club on board 14 and went off on quite an easy contract.

Board 22 partner bid on to 4, I want to double 3!!!

I also mis-played hand 8, I didn't take the finesse as was worried the lead was a singleton and I had placed the K in the other hand so hoped to lose the second and go on from there without a ruff crying

The rest was very good including a very well played 1NT by partner on hand 13!

Playing again at YHBC soon, just making a chilli for dinner (in a giant Yorkshire pudding!!!)

27th July 2017


Playing with a regular partner in a regular club session.

We both needed a good result tonight after some less favourable results with other partners recently.  For my part, it has been letting my partner's down and so I was really trying tonight.  It has been my declarer play that has been poor recently, tonight I turned that part around and scored 78% from 7 hands I played.  Partner defended superbly tonight too and the rest was sound - all resulted in a win overall.

Some avoidable scores though:

Board 6:  I doubled 1NT and am a believer in double each time here - I did this and of course, 2 makes so a poor score.  Partner was not cross though as believes in the same method, just unfortunate.

Board 23: I have a big hand and open 1 - partner jumps to 3 (level of the fit) and I went looking.  5 was too high (although it does make by East!).  Partner did not bid 2NT (Jacobi) and didn't make a delayed game raise, so I should have just bid 4.

Board 14 we were in the right spot - it doesn't make but others were allowed to make it!  Nothing to be done here.

Board 22 was very interesting and worth a look at.  At our table, I opened 1 (with other partners, including our opposition at the time, I would open 2 with this hand).  Ops jump to 3 (weak) and partner doubles (penalties).  I then jump to game as the vulnerability doesn't look right to leave the penalty bid.

I think the only option in this auction to reach a slam is for me to bid 4 instead of 4 - this must be showing first round control here.  Partner now bids 5 and I can bid 6 or 6 (if I am brave!).  I think 7 is very hard to find.

Board 24 was a good score as I made 11 tricks and nobody else did - I was daft not bidding game though but had a mental block on partner's 1NT re-bid (Confused with other partners systems here, I have too many system cards!!!).

A very enjoyable night though and played in good spirits too.  Playing twice tomorrow......

26th July 2017

YHBC Improvers:

Hosting the Improvers with Vee tonight.  There are 5 tables with 1 of us playing and Vee decides to host and I play with one of the improvers.

It is really good to see 5 tables, this is my ideal number as it is not too big a group but we get more meaningful scores with enough to compare against.

We did quite well tonight but were pipped at the post by a rising star pair - their reaction was worth coming second for as they were delighted (not just to win but to beat me!!!).

I played board 14 very badly but at least we were in the correct contract - I made up for it later with some better play, Board 3 should only make 2 but we are in 4 and I squeezed the Ops and made my last  - we should not have been in though.  I made a weak jump overcall (we had discussed this earlier in the night) but partner thought I was showing a strong hand and bid on.  We got away with this one.

I was so pleased with partner on board 5, the Ops bid 1 and he has a great hand with 6s to AQ and passes (the right thing to do, well done!).  I jump (the weak jump overcall I eluded to just now) - partner bids 4 (correct again) and Ops double.  I make 4 and it is all down to partner, pat on the back Kevin!!!

I messed up board 9 too - we found the best contract (I bid a 3 card suit at the 1 level to keep the auction going and found myself in game in it!!!).  I lost the first 2 s and then ruffed - I should now only draw 1 trump and then lose a trump from a  ruff - I can now ruff in my hand and retain trump length to draw trumps, sorry partner.

I asked partner to play the hands when I won the contract but he wasn't confident enough - I will be more forceful next time as there is little value in my playing the hands other than to show partner what I do and how I think.

More of the improvers are now thinking about playing in the main group too, I really want to encourage this and they are free to play in either group at any time.

I am planning another theme night on 16th August (I need some time to work through the hands and I am committed the next 2 Wednesdays).  A few have asked for transfer bids so will do this for the next theme night.

25th July 2017


Badminton tonight and played well tonight - took the afternoon off work and slept most of the afternoon.

I have been helping a friend get back into badminton over the past few weeks (he had a car accident 4 years ago and hasn't played any sport since) - tonight he came over for dinner and then we went to my club.

We started off together and was a bit nervous to start, then we played mixed against each other and he played really well - we won but went to 28-26!

I won most of my games and he won about half and all were competitive - we then played the last game together and it was terrible!!!  So bad, he asked the Ops for a re-match, I was shattered but agreed.  The re-match was much better but he put all the pressure on me (serving low and stayed at the net to let me win the points).  Fortunately, I have a strong smash and it worked, we won 21-14!

He is now really looking forward to next week, I am just glad to help a friend and was really pleased at how much he enjoyed it.

Hosting the Improvers tomorrow.

24th July 2017


Playing with a regular partner in round 7 of the  Monday Championships.

Today was not our day!

We are still top on the Monday Championships but today's score has not counted (top 6 out of 10 count).

Whatever I did seemed to be wrong tonight and must apologise to my partner for our performance.  Although I accept it takes 2 and partner wasn't perfect either, I was really bad today crying

Vee played tonight as Margaret was without a partner and they had an enjoyable session and much better than us!

I was pleased with making 5 on board 20, on a club lead it cannot be done but I had a  lead and so had time to lose a  and set up 2 s in dummy to discard my  losers.

I also opened 3NT on board 1 with long s - I felt 1 wasn't enough with this distribution, I cannot open 2 so it has to be 3 - if I am opening 3 then why not 3NT!  Partner bids 4 and I still think the Ops will compete to I bid 5 confidently and we score well going 2 off.

Without going into details (for a change!) - we missed several games and bid a few that we should not have!  The Ops also came alive against us and did the right things, frustrating but not much that can be done.

The scoring had been set as aggregate scoring tonight  - fortunately I knew how to amend it and fixed it quickly before I left tonight - now to add 2 new members and get EBU numbers for them.....

23rd July 2017

Dorset Swiss Pairs:

Playing with a now regular partner in the Dorset Swiss Pairs.

Had a good journey down and arrived at the same time as our friends (didn't know they were playing or would have offered them a lift!).

We arrived in plenty of time and had a coffee and a chat and a review of the system card, all nice and relaxed as we start playing.

The event had a bit of an odd start as a pair didn't show, then as the spare pair was sent home another pair arrived 10 minutes late!!!  A little bit of a farce as people are chased etc but the Directors handled it well and we caught up the time in the first 2 rounds.

We played well today but had a few wobbles, only lost 2 matches out of 7 but had 2 draws too so just over 1 green point overall and finished 12th (would have been 3rd if the last round had gone our way so we really were challenging today).

Brief match summary:

Match 1: Lost 7-13

We missed 4 (which I don't think makes on best defence) and our Ops also defended partner's 2 exceptionally well - partner got his own back by making 3 too though!  Our Ops went on to finish 3rd and were really great in defence, they earned their win here.

Match 2: Won 17-3

Unfortunate here, the scores went wrong on our friends table and we then drew them in round 2.  They should have played a different pair but nothing we could do about it.  We were solid here and each board was average or in our favour.  Partner played exceptionally well to make 4 +1 and our defence was great on 2 boards too.

Match 3: Drew

A draw seemed fair here, we had some good boards as did the Ops.  Partner played 2 contracts really well and we got the defence spot on to hold the Ops to 3 on another.  Partner did let 4 +2 through though which could have been held.

Match 4: Won 20-0

4 near 100% hands on this round!  Ops were a little too ambitious on a couple of hands and we got our defence right again.  Didn't feel like 20-0 but we did play well.

Match 5: Won 15-5

Ops missed a few games here, mainly due to our interference.  Almost all boards in our favour or flat.

Match 6: Drew

Another draw here but against a very strong pair.  I felt really pleased at getting anything here !  We would have won the match had I played my 2 contract better too, sorry partner.

Match 7: Lost 4-16

This match was ours other than 2 hands where partner was less than perfect in 3 (twice) - these were almost the only 2 errors by partner all day and just unfortunate they were both in the same match.

Overall we really enjoyed today and making less errors each time we play and are starting to really gel now too - I am modifying my play to suit our partnership and it is nice when it works!

Club Championship at CBC tomorrow.

22nd July 2017

Day Off:

No Bridge today.

I spent some of the morning going through Friday night's hands for our Improvers who played to see if I can help out a little - also cross referenced to my own hands from the same session as we played the same hands.

Then off to Trevor's to help out with some of the Surrey admin and back for lunch and a little house work.

We then went to my Niece in Basingstoke and saw our Great Niece too!  My Niece's