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FYI: CAVBC Online schedule will continue in parallel with Face to Face games.

Check out the schedule on the right hand side of homepage and note there will be an Individual Game on the last Saturday of each month. 

Spot Prizes will continue on all games and don't forget Player of the Month too!

Northside People Article on Battle of the Bay in support of St Francis Hospice

Very proud of this article in Northside People detailing the fabulous efforts of Dick Kiernan and Michael O'Keeffe in organising the Battle of the Bay event which raised almost €10,000 for St Francis Hospice. 

 

Other news
Letter from new President of CBAI, Dermot O'Brien, 11th Nov 2021
Letter from new President of CBAI, Dermot O'Brien, 11th Nov 2021

Dear Club Secretary,

First of all, I am honoured to have taken over from Paul Porteous within the CBAI. Thanks to all the members who have sent me good wishes, and of course to Paul for all he has done for Irish bridge.

Clubs Returning to Live Bridge

Who would have thought back in March 2020 that some twenty-one months later we would still be dealing with the fallout of the COVID pandemic, and all the uncertainty that it has created? The good news is that we now have a number of clubs back to live bridge. Attendances have been small in some cases, but we have reports of some bigger gatherings. Anecdotally, the leader so far is the Crannog club in Cavan, with twenty tables one night. (If you can do better, please let me know.) The honour of being the first congress to return to live bridge goes to Drogheda, with an extremely well-run four-day event in the ABCD Centre in early-October. And we recently held our first live CBAI event since February 2020, the Duais an Uachtarain in Cork.

More clubs are planning to reopen in the weeks ahead, while others tell us they are likely to wait until after Christmas. The increase in COVID cases has understandably made many people more cautious.

The recent government announcement did not make any changes to the regulations for indoor events. Our guidance to clubs thinking about reopening therefore remains unchanged - all participants should be fully vaccinated, the playing room should be well-ventilated, players should avoid congregating and use hand sanitiser regularly, equipment sharing should be kept to a minimum, and some protective measure should be in place. Our recommendation on the latter is protective perspex screens, but if those cannot be used for any reason, then players should wear facemasks throughout. If the screens are in use, then masks are required on entry/exit and when moving around, but not at the table. Obviously, the guidelines are subject to change; we monitor the public health guidance continuously, and will keep clubs informed of any developments.

We completely understand that some members, and some clubs, are cautious about returning to live bridge, and no-one should feel under any pressure to return if they don’t wish to do so. Online bridge has been a godsend, and it has many appealing aspects, especially on a rainy winter’s night. On the other hand, the longer we go without the live game, the greater the danger that it might wither away, so there is a balance to be struck. And of course, some members are not playing online, and their preferences need to be considered. Finally, some clubs may find themselves unable to use their previous premises. If yours is one of them, we suggest that you contact your regional committee in the first instance to see if they can help.

Affiliations

We took the decision last season not to lapse any clubs or individuals, given the prevailing conditions, even where affiliations were not paid. We are hoping that this season will represent a return to something closer to normality, given that it should be possible for most clubs to open at some stage during the season. So we would like clubs to affiliate ALL their members this season, not just those active online. We have offered the early bird discount again this year, so the fee for affiliations received up to 30 November is once again reduced to €10. Thereafter it will revert to the standard €12.50. If you have already submitted your affiliations, thank you very much; if not, please send in your forms, and fees, as soon as you can.

We also indicated that if it transpired that a club had made an overpayment last year, based on estimated numbers, we would give credit for it against this season’s affiliations. We would ask clubs to be reasonable with such requests; our affiliation fees, which are our main source of revenue, fell substantially last season, and the Association only broke even for the accounting year to end-April because we availed of temporary government wage supports when our offices were closed for business. Clubs with online activities, on the other hand, had revenues but little or no costs, and many made substantial surpluses. If yours is one such, perhaps you’d consider NOT requesting the set-off on the basis that our need is greater than yours at the moment.

Teachers & Tournament Directors

We are conscious that we have not had any new teacher or Tournament Director courses since early 2020, and we plan to remedy that as soon as possible. If any of your members are interested in either role, let us know and we will add them to our contact list.

President’s Award

The annual President’s Award recognises the unsung heroes of local and regional bridge. Congratulations to last year’s worthy winner, Danny Liddy, whose huge contribution to bridge in and around Ennis was highlighted in his nomination.

We are currently seeking nominations for this season’s award. If you would like to nominate someone who has made a difference for bridge players in your area, please contact us for a nomination form. The closing date is for nominations is 20 December.

Keep in Touch

One thing that became clear during the pandemic is that the more ways you have of keeping in touch with people, the better. With some clubs completely inactive, it was difficult to be sure that any messages or updates were getting through to members. As a result, we would encourage everyone to keep in touch with us via our website (www.cbai.ie) which is now much more pro-active than was previously the case, and also via our Facebook and Twitter accounts. Full disclosure – like many bridge players, I suspect, I am not personally a big user of social media. But there is no doubt that these channels have their place, and they certainly came in very handy during lockdown.

I am looking forward to working with all of you, and your clubs, to try to weather the current storms and ensure that Irish bridge continues to run smoothly. If anyone has any ideas or suggestions on things we should be doing, or could be doing better, I’d be delighted to hear them.

Yours sincerely,

Dermot

Dermot O’Brien

Chief Executive

Contract Bridge Association of Ireland

CAVBC News Update 01-Nov-2021
CAVBC News Update 01-Nov-2021

Player of the Month  🏆

Our October Player of the Month competitions ended last Friday. In the Open, Frances Gill had another great week, winning on 3 occasions to retain top spot. Patricia Quigley had two wins, but as she was partnering Frances in both those games, she wasn’t able to make any inroads on Frances and had to settle for 2nd place. In the Novice/B, Mary Byrne and Vanessa Timon returned to the fray and with two wins together, they took back 1st place from Kathleen Briody. Congratulations to all our winners. There will be a full wite up on CAVBC later this week.

The November competition will commence on 8th November as we are running Sim Pair events this week.

IBU Simultaneous Pairs this week

We have joined up with Glasnevin VBC, as we did last year, to run an IBU Simultaneous Pairs Game each night this week. For those of you who don’t want to play in the Sim Pair games, we will also have an open game each night this week. Both games will start at the same time of 19.30 each night. See schedule on right side of page for details.  Click here for the ECats results, Analysis, Commentary and local rankings. 

CAVBC Graded Team of 4 on Saturday 30th October

We had an entry of 16 pairs giving us 8 teams for our Graded Team of Four Game on Saturday. The teams played 4 rounds of 6 board matches at the end of which the team of Joyce Hammond, Kathleen Broaders, Rodney O’Hara and Catherine Lehane came out on top. (They also won the Spot Prize!). Our next Team of 4 Game will be on Saturday 27th November at 19.30. We will let you know details closer to the date.

Xmas is coming  🎅🎄

The CAVBC and Foxbay TD’s met on Saturday and we have an exciting set of events lined up before Xmas including Free Games, Turkey Draws, Individual Games along with our normal set of games. All details to follow next week.

CAVBC Upcoming Activities and other news

Birthday Celebration

Congratulations to the winners of our Birthday celebration games over the weekend. The Team winners were Mairin MacDevitt and Emily Rogers/Rona Booth and Mary McElhinney. The individual was won by Marie Fleury

Summer Season from 1st June to 31st August

We will continue to have all our scheduled weekly games on CAVBC throughout the summer, but our games will now be open to all CBAI members (subject to any grade specific restrictions for our games). If you would like to invite another CBAI member to play with you, just contact Dan (0876824300) or Aidan Synnott (0872469129) and we will add your friend to our Include List.

Spot Prizes

As our games are now open throughout the summer, we will not be paying out spot prizes. The last night for spot prizes is 31st May and we will have two spot prizes in each of our games.

Player of the Month

After the 4th week of our May competitions, the leaders in the Open and Novice/B sections are:

  • Open – John Treanor and Michael O’Keeffe
  • Novice/B – Brid Carter and Marian Carroll

The Novice Players of the Month for May are Orla Murnane and Ray wall.

You can check your standing in the competitions at any time. Just click on the Player of the Month Dropdown on the CAVBC home page.

BBO Workshops

There are no workshops scheduled for the moment. However, if you would like to find out more about BBO, there are a number of very useful YouTube videos available to help you. Organisers have found the following very helpful:One is somewhat similar to Aidan’s introductory course. How To Use Bridge Base Online (BBO) - YouTube  The other one is similar to Aidan’s advanced workshop. Knowing Your Way Around A BBO Table - YouTube

Novice mentoring initiative

We hope to use the BBO Video Option as part of our mentoring initiative. We will be in contact with the mentors and mentees after our video trial on the 16th. We are still happy to hear from you if you are interested in being a mentor or a mentee. Please contact danjomahony@gmail.com

Dublin North Region

The weekly Sunday game is on again this week at 15.00. Check it out in the Virtual Club Area of BBO from 13.00, if you wish to play.  

 

Video Trial Game - 07 May at 19:30

On Friday 07th May, we will have two games on CAVBC. We will have the normal Open game hosted by St Gabriel’s at 19.30 and we will also have a Video enabled game also at 19.30.  The cost of both games will be 3BBO$’s. You and your partner can decide which game you would like to play in and then register as normal.

If you do decide to play in the video game there are a few things that you need to know:

  1. There will be a new feature on your screen where you will see the other 3 players at the table and yourself and the TD, if the TD decides to pay your table a visit.  
  2. Your Laptop, Desktop Computer or Tablet must have a camera, microphone and speaker(s), either built-in or attached.
  3. You need to make sure that the “Split Screen” setting is set to on in your BBO account. This is the normal default setting, so I expect that it is.
  4. You need to make sure that your Sound Effects are set to off in your BBO account so that the other players at the table do not hear every click you make.
  5. The Video function and BBO runs as separate applications on your device. At the start of the game, you may receive a message requesting you to allow your browser to access your camera and/or mic. Once you allow this, you should be able to see the video functionality on BBO.
  6. We will allow 10 minutes for the 1st board, so that you can become familiar with the functionality and your TD will be available to try to help you if you have a problem.
  7. If a player at your table does not have their video enabled, they will appear as a black screen in the video section.
  8. Each players’ BBO name will be displayed along with their image.
  9. At the top of the video section, there are two icons.
  10. The first shows a microphone. You can use this to turn on and off your sound. When there is a line through the microphone, this indicates that your sound is off and the other players at the table cannot hear you. (There is a glitch with this. If you had your sound off when you are at a table and you move to the next table, your sound is automatically turned on, but the icon shows that your sound is off. We recommend that you set the sound option to your preferred status (on or off) when you move to a new table.)
  11. The second shows a camera. You can use this to turn on and off your video. When there is a line through the camera, this indicates that your video is off and the other players at the table will see a black screen instead of you.
  12. Some of us can be quite noisy, so we recommend that you keep your sound off while you play the boards and then turn it on when all boards at a table are complete, so that you can then chat with the other players until you move to the next table.
  13. Please continue to use the existing BBO Chat and Alert functionality to announce your system and alert your bids.
  14. If BBO crashes for some reason, your audio will still be on, so don’t start ranting and raving as the other players at the table are likely to hear you.
  15. If you find that BBO is very slow, then your device is not suitable for running the BBO video functionality. You should switch off both your Audio and Video functions on the BBO screen and play as normal.

As you know, we had a trial of the BBO Video option on Friday April 16th. The reaction from players was mixed and generally fell into two camps. Some players did not enjoy the experience finding it very slow and noisy, while others found it a very enjoyable experience. Personally, I found it to be a very enjoyable experience from both a playing and a TD point of view, but then I was using a two year old laptop, whose video and sound functionality was excellent. Here is what some of the other participants had to say:

“Thanks for giving me the opportunity to partake in Video bridge  game. I didnt have any difficulties logging on. Your email was very helpful. Games were slow , noisy.” – Kaye Nolan

“Very enjoyable game with video this morning. However, I would strongly recommend that the TD instructs everyone to mute their sound after greeting their opponents and before the bidding and play commences, otherwise background noise and chat can be distracting. I also think we should continue with posting our systems to chat, in order to save confusion, especially if video is not available to everyone. I do think it added greatly to the social element around the game.  I would also like to add that I had the opportunity to experience it from both sides of the spectrum. In the first instance I was using a low spec, 4 year old laptop and it was very sluggish, the second time I tried it on a borrowed Apple Mac and it was a totally different experience as everything worked like a dream and I had a really enjoyable experience. So, I guess my advice would be that it’s definitely much better when using a good modern machine” – Dick Kiernan

“I tried to get my mug on BBO Bridge this morning to no avail. I had camera switched on. but I was thinking should I have switched it to video mode? I also could not use audio, but I could hear my partner (muttering quietly what a muppet!)” – John Keenan

“I thought it worked well considering it was a trial video.  A few runs at it and we will all get the hang of it. I especially enjoyed not seeing or hearing my partner.  I could say what l wanted and he was silenced.” – Rose Burke (John Keenan’s partner)

“It didn’t work for me at all. Whilst I could hear and see everyone else at my table, they couldn’t hear me.  My mic wasn’t muted. In addition to this I often couldn’t play the cards I wanted. I had to logout and login many times, and, in the end, I came out for good. I usually use an iPad for playing bridge, so I’m not as familiar with the laptop.” – Eva Kelly

“Having tried it twice now I have to say it would not be my favourite way to play bridge. It was lovely meeting, greeting, and chatting with the opposition but for me I found the card displaying very slow and somehow distracting.” – Anne Carroll

“Lots of delay getting people's camera and mic active (including my own as TD!).  System lagging.  People taking phone calls and forgetting to go on mute.  People thinking they are on mute (mic struck through) but we could still hear them.  Seems nice and sociable if we can get these things ironed out.” – Orla Murnane

“I was glad of experience and am sure would improve! I found the movement of cards extremely sluggish, and I think the time per round would need to be a bit longer if the purpose is to be more sociable.” – Aileen Corboy

“It was good putting the faces to the names. Whenever the game starts it would be great if the mute option automatically kicks in. If time allows after the games, we can unmute and chat.” – Dympna Craig

We hope you will give our video game a try and decide for yourself which camp you fall into.

BBO Workshops - run by Aidan Synnott/CAVBC - Completed
BBO Workshops - run by Aidan Synnott/CAVBC - Completed

We held 3 very successful Zoom workshops over 3 Tuesdays at the end of February/start of March which were attended by over 100 people. Aidan Synnott put these sessions together with a view to helping CAVBC members to better enjoy their BBO experience. Some people were unable to attend on a Tuesday, so we have now scheduled further two workshops which will be held on Saturdays.

Introductory workshop on 27-March (completed) and Advanced Workshop to be held on Saturday 01st May at 15.00 (postponed from 10-April). If you would like to take part in the workshop, please enter your name and email address in the form below On the day of the workshop, we will send you an email with details of the zoom session.  Anyone who previously pre-entered for Advanced Workshop on 10-Apr will automatically get an invite for workshop on 01-May - no need to repeat pre-entry.

If you have any difficulty submitting the form please contact one of the following:

The content of each workshop is set out below.

FORM
C.B.A.I. National Teams - Bankers Trophy 24th - 25th April, 2021 Winners👏👏
C.B.A.I. National Teams - Bankers Trophy 24th - 25th April, 2021 Winners👏👏

Well done to the CAVBC teams on their 2nd and 3rd place in the CBAI National Teams - Bankers Trophy last weekend 

2nd: CAVBC members - Veronica Miller, Marie Dalton, Liz Sherlock, Colm McDonald

3rd: CAVBC Members - Ria Malone, Rose Burke along with Mary Breen & Liz Chambers

Thomas McCormack - 2 over 1 Game Force System Bridge Course

2 over 1 Game Force System Bridge Course

Tutor Thomas McCormack (Grade: National Grand Master)

This is one of the most popular modern systems among top Bridge players worldwide.
3  x 2-hour sessions
28-Mar  / 11-Apr / 18-Apr
Sundays 7-9 pm

Format: Zoom and Bridgebase Online

Course fee: 55 euro to CAVBC members


Open to all members of CAVBC and their friends, please say you are from Clontarf Area VBC when registering
No partner necessary but contact Liz Sherlock by text at 086 3770382 if looking for a partner, Liz is prepared to try to find partners for anyone requiring  one for the course, although it is not essential
For anyone unsure of the course formats a short introductory session will be run by Rory Egan if necessary, please state you require this when registering.
Those who register will be sent a link to the Zoom class for the teaching section of the course then the class will transfer to Bridgebase to practice pre-prepared hands.
A  full set of course notes will be emailed to you after each session
Payment details will be sent to you when you register and any credit card can be used for payment. Please send your BBO name with your registration.
Course tutors: Thomas McCormack and Rory Egan of Grand Master Bridge Online Bridge Academy (Dublin)
To Register for this course email rory@grandmasterbridge.com
Enquiries mobile Rory 086 8192765
Please note there is no course on 4th April (Easter Sunday) course dates are 28-March, 11 and 18-Apr

 

Email from Paul Porteous re Online Cheating and new CBAI game on Funbridge
Email from Paul Porteous re Online Cheating and new CBAI game on Funbridge

Dear All,

I have recently been corresponding with the Managers of the Online Virtual Clubs about various issues including cheating in the online game – and it is happening, but with a tiny minority of players.  The vast majority of players are playing away happily, without even thinking about cheating, continuing the honour tradition that has hall marked bridge for so long. Lets try and keep it that way, please!  Some very prominent players around the world have been tempted to cheat in the online game and HAVE BEEN CAUGHT and sanctioned! Its just not worth it!  We have approximately 200 Virtual clubs playing on BBO (BridgeBaseOnline) in CBAI territory and another 20 or so in NIBU – so the competitive and social games are being catered for.

Additionally, Funbridge has just started an individual daily CBAI game that you can enjoy on your own at any time of the day – over breakfast or lunch or when you are hiding from the rain under a tree!  This new game is free to your members for a month – during the week – from 15th February; you will need to pay a small fee if you play at the weekend, and all the time once the month’s trial is finished.  We will award CBAI Master Points to our players on their results, based on the numbers playing each day. https://bit.ly/3jB4GuD will give you some starting information on Funbridge

In the meantime, the CBAI is keeping going – the office is open, with at least two people here every day, so if any of your members need books or supplies, they can give us a call.  An updated book list can be found on www.cbai.ie – with a very comprehensive stock usually on board.

Unfortunately, many of our clubs have made the decision not affiliate at all this season, which means that our affiliation income is down by 50%; if you can contribute to keeping things going, even if not playing online – do give some consideration to financially maintaining the connection between your club and the CBAI !  We will still be here to pick up where we left off in pre-Covid days!

It’s not looking very promising for a return to live bridge in the short even to the medium term, but we might get back to see one another in the flesh in the autumn – when the vast majority of the vaccinations have taken place – please!

Stay safe and stay well!

Kind regards

Paul

Paul Porteous

Chief Executive

Contract Bridge Association of Ireland

Templeogue House

Templeogue Road

Dublin D6W F822