The Keep Bridge Alive project being run by Professor of Sociology at the University of Stirling in Scotland (and Scottish international bridge player) Samantha Punch has been rebranded as "Bridge: A Mindsport for All" (BAMSA). The key goals of the project are to work in collaboration with bridge organisations to use research to transform the image of bridge, to increase participation across all ages, and to enhance the sustainability of bridge as a mindsport that connects people and challenges their minds. Details of the current projects being undertaken in support of those goals are here.
The project has recently produced a short video, Why Play Bridge? What Makes Bridge Brilliant, which may be found here. Hopefully, it will not be too long before we are back to face-to-face bridge (and hand-shaking!) as seen in the video. In addition, the researchers are interested in learning how bridge players have responded to the challenges to the game presented by the Covid-19 pandemic and associated restrictions, which they will collate in an effort to provide insights into the short- and longer-term impacts on the bridge community. You can email your views to firstname.lastname@example.org or for more information see the BAMSA website. Responses don't need to be long and can be structured as you wish. So please consider responding yourself, and bring this to the attention of any fellow bridge players that you think might be prepared to help.
Another survey, aimed specifically at club representatives and bridge teachers, is being run by Kevin Judge, who is a PhD student involved in the project. The aim of Kevin's research is to develop an understanding of how bridge clubs promote themselves, and encourage, develop, and retain players. The survey may be found here (until 31 July) and will take approximately 30 minutes to complete. Participation is entirely voluntary, and all potential participants can receive full participant information detail by accessing the survey. Both the CBAI and the IBU are pleased to support the research effort, and we would therefore encourage relevant parties (bridge club secretaries, or organisers, and teachers) to share their views to enable Kevin and his colleagues to form solid conclusions and develop effective proposals on how best to promote bridge. If anyone has any questions on this research project as a whole, any issues accessing the survey, or any suggestions on how it might be improved, Kevin will be happy to help, and can be contacted by email.
Update May 9: All CBAI and IBU events planned for the 2019/20 season have been cancelled, although several congresses are looking at holding their competitions as online virtual events. So far, those doing so are South of Ireland (Killarney) Congress (9-17 May), and Yeats Country (Sligo) Congress (5-7 June), but there may be others, so watch this space.
Update April 10: The following events have been added to the list of cancellations and postponements for the 2019/20 season: Galway Congress (10-13 April), IBU Seniors Congress (21/23 April), Carlow Congress (1-3 May), NIBU Spring Congress (1-3 May), IBU Club Pairs (9 May and 16 May), South of Ireland (Killarney) Congress (9-17 May), 4Fun Teams (23 May), IBU Egan Trophy (23-24 May), Ballina Congress (10-12 July), the Lady Milne (17-19 April) and Teltscher Trophy (15-17 May) home international tournaments, and the European Championships in Portugal (17-27 June). The congresses and the international events have been cancelled, while the CBAI and IBU events MAY take place later in the year if circumstances allow - although this must be considered increasingly unlikely as time passes and the list of deferred events mounts.
At meetings on Saturday 7 March, the IBU Emergency Committee and the CBAI Governing Council decided, with regret, to postpone all national competitions scheduled for the months of March and April, as a prudent measure to avoid large gatherings and to protect the bridge playing population, which by its demographic is an at-risk group, against the threat of the Covid 19 virus ("coronavirus").
Specifically, this means the postponement of the following scheduled competitions: IBU Burke and O'Connor Trophies (14/15 March), CBAI National Pairs Championships (Davidson, Laird, and Civil Service Trophies, 21/22 March), IBU Moylan Cup (4/5 April), CBAI National Confined Championships (JJ Murphy, Lambert, and Cooper Cups, 18/19 April), and CBAI National Teams Championships (Kelburne, Bankers, and Tierney Trophies, 25/26 April).
Regions and clubs can decide for themselves what policy to adopt in relation to their own events, including congresses, which typically tend to be smaller in size than the national events. If a congress committee decides to postpone or cancel a congress, please let us know so that we may reflect this fact on our website.
The IBU and CBAI will review the situation at Easter, in light of developments on the coronavirus in the meantime, and will issue an update at that point. It is hoped to hold the postponed competitions over the summer, assuming (a) that the threat of the virus has been contained at that stage, and (b) that suitable venues can be found. Please be assured that this decision was not taken lightly; your representatives felt that, given the current guidance from the medical experts, the risk involved in holding large gatherings of card-players was simply too great.
Welcome to the Irish Bridge Union Website
The Irish Bridge Union (IBU) is a confederation of the Contract Bridge Association of Ireland (CBAI) and the Northern Ireland Bridge Union (NIBU) and is the body responsible for the administration of bridge on an All-Ireland basis, where applicable - for example participation in European and World Championships.
The IBU also runs a number of All-Ireland competitions - the Burke Trophy (Inter-County Open Teams Championship), the O'Connor Trophy (Inter-County Intermediate A Teams Championship), the Moylan Cup (All-Ireland Pairs Championship), the Pat McDevitt Trophy (Senior Pairs), the Senior Teams Championship, the IBU Club Pairs, and the Egan Trophy (All-Ireland Teams Championship), as well as the annual Interprovincial Championships, which have sections at Open, Area Master, and Intermediate grades. All members of CBAI and NIBU are automatically members of the IBU.
There are also several IBU junior events, notably the Limerick Treaty Cup (Pairs), and the All-Ireland Schools Teams Championships.
Finally, there is a week of Simultaneous Pairs events in support of the IBU every November. Details of this year's event are set out below.
The IBU Simultaneous Pairs week 2019 has now concluded, and a list of the prizewinners is here. Well done to all, and we will be paying the prizes through the relevant club's bank account wherever possible. If you were not amongst the prizewinners, click here to see the final results and check how you fared in the national rankings.
Thanks to all those clubs that took part, and to our bulletin commentators Paul Delaney and Brian Senior for their expert analysis. We hope that you enjoyed the event and will play again next year.
If your club does not take part in the Sims, why not encourage the committee to sign up; there will be another opportunity in February, for the CBAI Simultaneous Pairs week. Just give us a call on (01) 4929666 if you'd like to be included.
Here are the notices for the following international trials:
International Open Trials for the European Open Teams Championship to be held in Madeira from 17-27 June 2020 - IBU Open Trials.doc
International Women's Trials for the European Women's Teams Championship to be held in Madeira from 20-27 June 2020 - IBU Womens Trials.doc
International Senior Trials for the European Senior Teams Championship to be held in Madeira from 20-27 June 2020 - IBU Senior Trials.doc
International Mixed Trials for the European Mixed Teams Championship to be held in Madeira from 17-27 June 2020 - IBU Mixed Trials.doc
Good luck to the team of John Connolly, Stephen Barr, Michael Donnelly, Nathan Doyle, Jarlath McDonnell, and Conor Farrell, with NPC Thomas MacCormac, who will represent Ireland in the 27th European Under-26 Open Team Championships in Oslofjord, Norway, from 5 to 11 July. Full details, including ongoing results, can be found here.
Well done to the winners of the IBU competitions in the 2018/19 season.
The Burke Trophy (Open Inter-County Teams) was won by Tyrone (William Dukelow, Dean Bradley, Bill Scott, and Drew Lindsay)
The O’Connor Trophy (Intermediate Inter-County Teams) was won by Dublin City (Teresa Gavin, Philip Robinson, Frank Kennedy, and Evgenia Gladysheva)
The IBU Club Pairs (Open Section) was won by John & Lucy Phelan
The IBU Club Pairs (Intermediate Section) was won by Teresa Gavin & Colette Allen
The Moylan Trophy (All-Ireland Pairs Championship) was won by Ronan McMaugh & Marcin Rudzinski
The Egan Trophy (All-Ireland Teams Championship) was won by Rex Anderson, David Greenwood, Paul Tranmer, and Wayne Somerville
The IBU Seniors Congress Pairs was won by BJ O'Brien & Terry Walsh
The IBU Seniors Congress Teams was won by Enda Glynn, Bob Pattinson, Joan Kenny, and Teresa Rigney
Congratulations to all, and thanks to those of you who supported the IBU competitions this season.