Bracknell Bridge League
Release 2.19n
Results
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Alan Brown
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Alan Brown
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Mick Green

Welcome to the Bracknell Bridge League.


We have been been running a teams-of-four Bridge league in the Bracknell, Wokingham, Crowthorne, Camberley and Yateley area for more than 50 years and currently have three divisions in the League as well as a knockout handicap/pivot competition. New teams are welcome to join. Team members do not need to be EBU members, or members of a local club, to play in the league.  You do need a minimum of four players (preferably 5 or 6 to provide reserves), and a venue where you can host your home matches. Entries for the 2019/20 season are now closed, but if you wish to register interest in entering a team in the 2020/21 season or just receive more information on the league then please contact info.bbl@bridgewebs.com.

News
7th August 2020

Update on 2020-21 Season

Thanks to all clubs and teams for their response to the survey on the options for next season. We had feedback from 17 of the 18 teams currently in the league, with a further three replies from potential new teams. A sizeable majority expressed their concern about face-to-face matches even if government advice was favourable and most teams were happy to play on-line.  The results from the survey were discussed at a recent virtual committee meeting, at which it was provisionally agreed that the 2020-21 season should start by the end of September or early October as an on-line league, with the option to play face-to-face once the advice becomes favourable but only if both teams are happy to do so.

The structure and programme for the new season will be similar to that in recent years, with teams playing each other twice over a period of about six months. Whilst we anticipate that a small number of teams will choose not to play on-line, we are hopeful that there will be at least two new teams and therefore expect to be able to run three divisions of similar size to last season. The composition of each division will reflect the final standings of the season just completed and there will be promotion and relegation at the end of the new season. Those teams who wish to defer for one season are, on their return, guaranteed a place in the division they would have played had they not deferred.   

On-line matches will be played on BBO, although BCL may be used if both teams agree. The on-line environment offers a much more flexible approach to when matches can be played and the fixture schedule will be drawn up around (advisory) playing weeks rather than specified ‘home’ nights. Matches may be played on a day (& time) that is mutually agreeable to both teams, although they should be completed in the week specified by the fixture schedule if at all possible.  Although the default for matches will be 24 boards, the committee recognises the concerns expressed by some players of having to play that number of boards in a single on-line session and therefore matches of 18 boards will be permitted provided both teams agree.  Those players who already take part in the various EBU/BBO duplicate sessions run by several clubs in the area will be familiar and hopefully comfortable with that number, which is still consistent with EBU rules currently in place for the award of master points for the league. Provided the correct IMPS to VP conversion table is used, the Committee sees no problem in playing either number of boards. By agreement, matches may also be played in two distinct sessions rather than with the usual short break between two sets of 12 boards.

Provided there are sufficient entries, the pivot-handicap cup will be run in the new season as an on-line competition.

With no realistic chance of holding the event in the near future, it has finally been decided to cancel this season’s EOSP.  However, teams who won their division or the pivot will still receive their engraved trophy at some stage.  In line with the BBL Constitution, the Committee feels that the AGM, the other casualty of the covid situation, should be held before the start of the new season, if at all possible. With little or no prospect of a ‘live’ meeting, it has been decided that a virtual AGM will be held on Zoom within the next few weeks. A calling notice will be sent to club contacts shortly, detailing the proposed agenda. The main objective of the AGM will be to seek the endorsement from the clubs for the proposed structure and programme of the 2020-21 season, as outlined above.

We hope all club contacts can attend or be represented.

27th June 2020

BBL Season 20-21

Although we are still trying to complete the current season, your committee are now considering the best way to proceed for the new season, which we still hope to be able to start around the usual time of October. All team captains and club contacts are invited to take part in a short survey which will help the committee to decide on the best way to go for the next season. The survey has been sent to club contacts who should circulate this to team captains and encourage them to respond.  The club contacts should, if appropriate, also cater for the response of potential new teams or those who merge within the club.  The options open at present range from a full return to face-to-face (F2F) bridge, on-line matches, a combination of on-line and F2F, to a complete suspension of the BBL for an indeterminate period. Which route we go down depends not only on government advice on social distancing, but also on the views of the players who partake in the league. The committee also appreciates that many of the options may not be acceptable to some teams and we can reassure any team that wishes to take a season out that they will be awarded the same positions on re-entry as they (eventually) finish with this season.

Please complete and return the survey by the end of July. There are a number of ways captains can respond to the survey: directly to the secretary Ian Adnams, via your club contact or by downloading the form here, completing and returning it to the committee at info.bbl@bridgewebs.com.

12th May 2020

BBL Secretarial Vacancy

After six years in the role, Ian Adnams has decided to end his tenure as BBL League Secretary at the end of this season. Under normal circumstances, the season concludes with the AGM followed shortly by the End-of-Season Pairs evening, neither of which has taken place because of the Covid-19 situation. In addition, there are still a number of matches to be played, so the season is far from over for the Committee and Ian has kindly offered to stay in post whilst we try to bring the 2019-20 season to a satisfactory conclusion. The Committee would like to thank Ian for all his hard work over the last six years, wish him a happy ‘retirement’ and hope to see him representing Finchampstead in the BBL for many years to come.

The league now needs to find a replacement, so the Committee would like to hear from anybody who might be interested in taking over from Ian as Secretary. If you would like to express an interest or just find out more about the role, please contact the league via info.bbl@bridgewebs.com. In addition to seeing the current season out, Ian has also offered to provide assistance during a handover period. 

12th May 2020

Completing the 2019-20 season - Update

The BBL committee has decided to adopt a policy similar to that of the B&B County for completing the season, setting a date by which all league matches should be played. The deadline for playing any match is 31st August 2020. In keeping with existing rules, the result must be posted on LMS by the Friday following the match.  We hope that this approach will allow adequate time for teams to complete their matches either on-line or face-to-face.

As the BBL has no explicit rule for determining the outcome of unfulfilled matches in those cases where neither team is at fault, we have also decided to adopt the County League of 8/ League of 4 rule to determine the result. This rule is:

The result of an unplayed match is adjudicated at the end of the season by apportioning the available 20VPS in the ratio of the average VPs obtained by each team in all of the other matches they have played in the season (this may include a previous match between the two teams). 

No provision will be made for determining the result of the final of the Pivot. Unless all participants are willing to play on-line, the match will be played face-to-face as soon as circumstances permit. No deadline is being imposed.

17th April 2020

Completing the 2019-20 Season

The BBL held a ‘virtual’ committee meeting recently to decide how best to complete the current season in light of the coronavirus situation. Although there are just 11 league matches still to be played, the questions of which team will win the league and which will be relegated from Division 2 still have to be answered. One option would be to curtail the season now and use the current standings as the final positions. Alternatively, the existing league rules on unfulfilled matches could be applied, but neither of these options are seen as fair or ideal in the current situation and we have made a decision to extend the season to allow key matches to be completed.

On-line bridge offers a way to complete such matches whilst we wait until the current lock-down eases sufficiently to allow ‘face-to-face’ matches to resume.  BridgeBaseOnline (BBO) and BridgeClubLive (BCL) are two alternatives ways to play on-line, both of which have been trialled successfully within the BBL community and appear to meet all the requirements for a competitive teams-of-four match.  Whilst the committee is happy for matches to be played in this manner, we accept that some teams will be unable or unwilling to go down this route and therefore it should only be used if both teams are agreeable. For those teams who would like to give this a go but are not too familiar we would recommend several practices before you undertake that all-important match. There are a number of very helpful videos on you-tube about playing on BBO. The league is happy to give advice if it can or even provide a team for a friendly should you wish – just contact us via info.bbl@bridgewebs.com to do so.  Should you choose to play on-line, don’t forget to enter the usual details into LMS after the match.

Of course, not all of the 11 outstanding matches are ‘key’ or will remain so. All three matches in Division 3 are already ‘dead-rubbers’ and we would expect a number of those in the other divisions to reach the same status once some of the matches are completed. ‘Dead-rubbers’ can be played if the two teams so wish. Otherwise we will assign a draw in LMS for completeness, but no master points will be issued. Please do not be tempted to populate LMS with the names of your team – the BBL will be charged by the EBU under the P2P scheme if you do. If you are unsure as to whether your own match needs to be played please contact the fixture secretary at leaguesec.bbl@bridgewebs.com.

As well as the outstanding league matches, the final of the pivot is still to be played. This season’s finalists are Ascot (Franklin (C)) and Woodley (Hopkins). Again we would support completion on-line - provided both teams are happy to go down that route.

The BBL AGM was originally scheduled for 30th April, but will now take place sometime later in the summer- once the season is completed and ‘live’ gatherings are permitted. Failing that, we may need to go ‘virtual’ somehow/sometime.

As previously reported, the EOSP evening planned for 6th May will not take place. Whether or not the event is moved to a later date or cancelled completely for season 2019-20 has yet to be decided. The committee recognises the popularity of the event and will try to hold it later; however the availability of a hall is outside our control at present and there are also concerns about the financial viability of the event should the number of entrants drop because of on-going health risks.  

Under normal circumstances, once the EOSP event is completed there is a short lull in activity before the secretary sends out invitations for entries for the new season and we start to plan/draw up fixtures. Despite the uncertainty as to when the new season can start, we still plan to send out informal enquiries to the clubs around the usual time (mid-June) to be able to gauge the numbers for season 2020-21. Should there be much of a decrease in teams because of knock-on effects from a variety of reasons associated with coronavirus, we may need to think carefully about the structure of the league or seek the views of the clubs as to the best way forward.

Finally, the committee hopes you remain safe and well and it won’t be too long before we have the opportunity to get back to the bridge table face-to-face. We will keep you up-to-date of any changes or progress.

16th March 2020

Coronavirus and the BBL

As you would expect the Coronavirus is now impacting on the league matches.

To date a total of 11 matches across the three divisions and the pivot final are still to be played     

Whilst we have the mechanism within the rules to assign a result to unfulfilled fixtures the Committee has decided that we should extend the season to allow all fixtures to be completed - the duration of this extension cannot be predicted so we will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates directly to the Club Contacts and on the website.

Although the EBU now strongly recommends that county events are cancelled, the Committee has decided that a final decision on whether or not the EOSP goes ahead on the 6th May will be made at a later date. 

1st March 2020

Season 19-20: Promotion/Relegation

There appears to be some confusion on the number of teams to be promoted/relegated at the end of the season.   As reported under the 31st October ‘news’ item on the website (below), the committee decided to reduce the number from 2up/2down to 1up/1down for this season because of the reduction in size of each of the divisions. However, the highlighting on the EBU LMS league tables apparently led some teams to believe there had been no change. LMS has now been updated to be consistent with the new rule.

07 Feb 2020

End of Season Pairs 2019/20.

The annual End of Season Pairs competition will take place on Wednesday 6th May 2020 at Ascot Bridge Club, Chavey Down, SL5 8RR.   The cost of entry will again be £6.00 per pair, payable on the day.  This year there will be a limit of 36 pairs placed on the number of entrants. Entry is open to all members of participating clubs and teams, not just those who took part in the League or Pivot Handicap Cup.  Player registration starts at 7pm and the presentation of trophies for the League and Handicap/Pivot competitions will take place at 7:15pm.  

Parking at the venue is limited so please car share wherever possible and be prepared for double parking - BBL/Ascot members will be on hand to assist. There should also be a small amount of street-parking available within a short walk of the venue.

Pairs wishing to enter the competition are asked to complete the form on the EOSP page (also available through the main left menu) as soon as possible.  Entries will be accepted on a ‘first-come/first-served’ basis should the limit of 36 pairs be reached. 

There is a downloadable poster here which is available for display in clubs.

There was a Committee Meeting held on 30 January.  A copy of the Minutes is available to view on the Minutes page under League Governance

31 Oct 2019

Update of Rules

Following the reduction in size of the league for this season, the Committee has decided to introduce a more flexible approach to the number of teams to be promoted or relegated each season. The two-up/two-down policy that has been in place for many seasons has now been replaced by one-up/one-down, with the option of a second promotion/relegation at the discretion of the Committee, depending on the size of the division. Club contacts will be advised at the start of the season as to the policy in place for the season - for 2019/20 it will be just one-up/one-down. The League Rules have been modified to cover this and may be found under Rule 17 of  Match Management.

Team captains who regularly fail to submit the names of their players into LMS can be the bane of the Fixture Secretary's life, as failure to do so means a check cannot be made on appearances and Master Points cannot be awarded at the end of the season unless the Secretary chases captains for the information. At the discretion of the Committee, a 2 VP penalty can be imposed on persistent offenders, but the wording of the rule (11.1) meant that this could only be applied to the home team. This has now been modified to cover both the home and away teams.  Don't forget the rule also applies to the submission of the match result as well as the player's names.

An error in the cross-reference under rule 15.2.3 was also corrected. 

These changes were ratified at the recent Committee Meeting, held on 24th October. Minutes from the meeting have been uploaded to the website and may be found on the Minutes page (under League Governance).

25 Sep 2019

2019 / 2020 EoSP

The End-of-Season Pairs event for the forthcoming season will be held on the evening of Wed 6th May 2020. The venue will be St Martin's Church Hall, Chavey Down, North Ascot. Further details on the event and how to enter will be announced later in the season. The BBL Committee would like to express their thanks to Ascot Bridge Club for their help in arranging the evening.

10 Aug 2019
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2019 / 2020 Season

The BBL League fixtures and Pivot Draw are now live to view on LMS. Club contacts should by now have received a list of team contacts for the new season from the secretary Ian Adnams – please let Ian know by e-mail at sec. ..........

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20 Jun 2019
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2019 / 2020 Season

We are now accepting League and Pivot/Handicap Cup entries for the 2019/2020 season. 
The costs are unchanged from last season at £10.00 per team for the League, and £7. ..........

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BBL EoS Pairs

End of Season Pairs 2018/19

Well done Jennie & Bruce!!!

For Photos of the Season's winners, click HERE

21 May 2019
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The league held its AGM on 25th April – minutes of the meeting and those of the Committee meeting that preceded the AGM are now uploaded to the Minutes Page (under League Governance).  The Chairman, Bill Barclay, has resigned following his recent move out of the area, with Dave Lee replacing Bill as Chair. All other Committee members will remain in post for the new season. ..........

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04 Aug 18
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2018 / 2019 Season

The BBL League fixtures and first round Pivot Draw are now live to view on LMS.

As a result of our recent survey we are in the process of making some some changes to the League Rules, which will be updated on the Web Site shortly.  A brief summary follows below: 

First, the rule on playing for different clubs has been relaxed slightly. ..........

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13 Jul 18
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Leagues & Pivot

We are now accepting League and Pivot/Handicap Cup entries for the 2018/2019 season.

The costs are unchanged from last season at  £10.00 per team for the League, and £7. ..........

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13 Jun 18

BBL Minutes

Committee and AGM Minutes now uploaded to the Minutes page (under League Governance)

31 May 18

BBL End of Season Pairs

A total of 30 Pairs played in the End of Season Pairs event and results can be seen on this website

Well done to Marcelli & Bill for winning and to all those who took part.

Photo's have been uploaded and these are within the history tab

20 May 18
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BBL Survey April/May 18

A total of 67 individuals responded to the survey:  50 answered the survey for current players and 17 responded to the non-current player survey.  The Committee would like to thank all those who took the time and trouble to complete either survey.  A summary of the responses is on the League Survey page (also accessible from the menu on the left). ..........

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21 Feb 18
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End of Season Pairs 2017/18. The annual End of Season Pairs competition will take place on Thursday 31 May 2018 at Finchampstead Memorial Hall, The Village, Finchampstead RG40 4JU.  The cost of entry will again be £6. ..........

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26 Jan 18

A NEW BRIDGE MAGAZINE is a new, completely FREE, on-line magazine edited by Mark Horton. Contributors include: David Bird, Alan Mould, Larry Cohen, Alex Adamson & Harry Smith, Sally Brock, Julian Pottage, Liz McGowan and Kit Woolsey. It has been recently added to our links page or you can click: www.newbridgemag.com.


There was a Committee Meeting held on 12 October.  A copy of the Minutes is available to view here.