The Director Speaks!
At the beginning of each playing session, we Directors will normally make announcements covering the number of tables, the direction of play, the introduction of new players and on odd occasions, when we are reminded to do so, provide guidance on a point or two of etiquette.
Away from the immediate pressures of playing and directing the game, we wanted to ask you to join us in thinking about how important it is that, while playing a competitive game, one remains courteous and considerate. If you simply Google 'duplicate bridge etiquette', you will find examples from all over the world of how important different clubs and associations believe good manners and, in most cases, common sense, to be.
Rather than regurgitate the (probably better written) views of others, we would like to home in on just one or two issues each time we put pen to paper (well, index finger to keyboard in truth). This is not intended to be a witch hunt or 'spot the offenders' competition. If, of course, you feel that your partner might occasionally or inadvertently be guilty of breaches, you would be helping him or her by drawing their attention to this article!
Before the first board begins it is certainly permissible to exchange pleasantries with partner and the opponents. However, once the bidding has started, comments should be kept to a minimum. ln particular, you should not conduct post-mortems at the table! A post-mortem can upset the opponents, undermine your partner or, in the worst case, communicate information to players at other tables who have not yet played the hand!
lf your partner, or indeed your opponents, happen to play a hand particularly well, quietly compliment them. A ‘well done' will normally suffice! While it is acceptable in soccer or tennis to do 'high fives', it is not proper behavior at bridge. Neither, it should be said, is berating your partner when he or she plays less than perfectly. Behave unto others, etc."
And as a final, unrelated point - please silence your phone! If you really must have it with you for an urgent matter, please set it to 'vibrate' and, in need, respond quickly and quietly outside during a break in play. lt is not fair to disturb the concentration of other players.
We hope no one will feel 'got at' by this or any of the articles that follow. lt is just your humble directors trying to lead us gently along the path of becoming an even better club.
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