Spade Heart  Diamond Club
Minehead Bridge Club
Minehead Bridge Club

Welcome to Minehead Bridge Club. We are a small friendly club and we play duplicate bridge on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at the  Minehead Methodist Church Hall (please click on the 'Information" tab in the left hand column for further details). We use Bridge Mates for computerised scoring on both evenings and on Tuesday evenings Master Points are awarded but on Thursdays, when it is a little more relaxed with a mix of beginners and more experienced players, a prize can be won by the winning pair! There is always a spare partner for each evening except for competition nights.Visitors are very welcome to either or both evenings.

Andrew Robson - tip of the month
Column of the Month - for the more  Experienced

Beware of taking on Espen Erichsen from Tunbridge Wells at either tennis (county level) or bridge (international level). He plays both like a terrier — never letting up. With Norwegian partner Odin Svendsen (Erichsen moved over from Norway 20 years ago and married Helen, also an international player, and indeed one of my absolute star students of the past), he won the Swiss Pairs at the London Year End Congress. He also enjoyed a top-ten finish in the Open Pairs with his Kent teammate Andrew Cairns 

Board Pairs
South Deals
None Vul
A 9 7 3
A K 7 6
Q 10
7 5 2
K 4 2
Q 10
4 2
K Q 10 9 8 3
W   E
10 6 5
J 9 8 4 2
8 3
A J 4
Q J 8
5 3
A K J 9 7 6 5
West North East South
  Erichsen   Cairns
      1 ♦
3 ♣1 Dbl2 4 ♣ 4 ♦
Pass 6 ♦3 Pass Pass
  1. Weak jump overcall.
  2. Negative ie take-out.
  3. Knows from the opposing bidding that partner is very short in clubs, so all his high cards are working. If E-W had never bid, you could foresee the auction 1 ♦-1 ♥-2 ♦- 3NT-end. Whether East would have found a club lead is another matter, though.

It was Cairns who played the starring role on our featured deal from that Open Pairs. West led the king of clubs v 6 ♦ , following with a hopeful second club. Declarer ruffed, drew trumps in two rounds and led the queen of spades, needing West to hold the king. 

If West had covered the queen of spades with the king, declarer would have won the ace and led a second spade back to his eight. West played low on the spade, however. Declarer next tried the jack of spades, hoping to pin a now-bare ten in the East hand (admittedly unlikely, given West had advertised six clubs, so did not rate to have four spades). 

West correctly covered the jack of spades with the king and dummy’s ace did not reveal East’s ten. However, all was not lost. Declarer ruffed dummy’s remaining club and starting running his diamonds.

A K 7
Q 10
W   E
J 9 8
5 3

Look at the ending as declarer led his last diamond, discarding dummy’s last spade. East was squeezed. If he threw away the ten of spades, declarer’s eight would have been promoted. Let go instead a heart and a heart to the ace-king would remove all the defensive hearts and dummy’s seven would win the last trick. Twelve tricks and small slam made

A message from the EBU


Firstly I hope you are all keeping well during these difficult times.

Although the EBU office is closed, staff are working from home and are available to offer support as normal in any way that we can.

While clubs are not able to open many members are meeting up virtually to play online. There is lots of information on the website but in short 3 of the main platforms which members are using are: Bridge Base Online (BBO), Bridge Club Live (BCL) and Funbridge. The EBU is hosting 4 matchpointed pairs games each day on BBO at 1400, 1530, 1930 and 2100. Each game is 12 boards in duration and costs $1.50 to play in. If your club is not already meeting up online why not suggest to members to join one of these EBU games, perhaps the one closest to your normal bridge session?

Also whilst many people have more spare time how about encouraging some of the more experienced players in the club to have a game with one of the keen beginners in the club to keep them interested and help their bridge progress whilst the club is shut? Both BBO and BCL have the facility for players to practice their bidding to help a beginner or to practice with a regular partner.

On the subject of teaching and mentoring EBTA has lots of useful advice on how to teach on-line. If at all possible it is important to keep lessons going while the club is shut so that the players who are learning stay engaged and do not forget what they have learnt so far. If you are not already a member of EBTA you may want to consider joining for just £25 for a year. Further information can be found here.

The EBU Membership Development Officer Tim Anderson has a written a blog post talking about "Keeping your bridge club alive in difficult times" which can be found here and is well worth a read.

We will be here to help and advise when the current situation starts to return to normal and clubs can think about re-opening. Some clubs may qualify for financial support from the government and further information on that can be found here. Depending on the insurance that clubs have they may also be able to claim on their insurance for business interruption; for clubs with insurance through the EBU we will be clarifying the position with our insurers and will inform clubs in due course.

If you have any questions on the things I have mentioned above or if I can be of any assistance please do not hesitate to contact me.



Jonathan Lillycrop
Club Liaison Officer



We would love for you to join if you are not already playing.

Somerset online bridge games are now taking place every Monday at 2pm and Wednesday at 7pm with more games to be added if there is demand. These games are free this week and next after which games will cost £1 each. These games are restricted to all Somerset players (you don’t need to be an EBU member) and are friendly and relaxed. We play 18 boards taking about two hours.

It’s easy to join in. 
There is a video here explaining the whole process.

Firstly you need a Bridge Base Online Username and this is how you do that.

1. Go to
2. Top right LOGIN/Register
3. Click on Login/register
5. Fill in the form, Agree to the terms of service and REGISTER
6. Receive an email and do as it says.
7. Tell me what your user name, real name and EBU number if you have one are via email. (scbachair @

This whole process takes two minutes at most.

Having done that you are good to go but you do need a partner so make sure he/she does the same. If you don’t have a partner for a game please let me know and i will try to fix you up.

Now that you have  your BBO username registered with Somerset this is how you join a game:

Games are open for registration on BBO two hours beforehand so if you wish to play a particular session log onto BBO after this time, click on COMPETITIVE and then ALL TOURNAMENTS where you will see all the  events listed. Search for SOMERSET   to see it listed in the list of PENDING tournaments. Click on this and enter the username of your partner. He/she must be logged in to BBO and will receive an invitation from you to play.  Try to do this at least 15 minutes before the start time so that the director has time to set up the appropriate movement. If it’s your first time try to register for the game very early so we have time to help you if necessary. You can phone Tony on 01935 816566 in these circumstances.

It’s easy and it’s fun so if you are missing your bridge why not get involved?

01935 816566

Andrew Robson Tip
Tips for Intermediates

Keeping the right cards.


When discarding, there is no substitute for counting. However, here are a few (related) pointers to help you to keep the right cards. 

  1. Keep four-card suits. The most likely division of a suit round the table is 4432. Unless partner has four cards, either dummy (visible — easier) or declarer (not visible — trickier) has four cards. You need to keep all four of your cards to match their four cards.
  2. Keep equal length to match dummy. Note this doesn’t really apply to short suits (three or fewer cards), for partner (with the greater length) will normally be in charge of keeping such a suit.
A Q 10 8
i)   ♦ J 9 3 2
ii)  ♦ 9 4 3 2
iii) ♦ 7 4 3 2

In (i) and (ii), you must keep all your diamonds but in (iii) you can throw them away because your highest card is lower than dummy’s lowest.

  1. Try not to reveal you have no more cards left.
Q 10 5 2
J 9 8 6
W   E
7 4
A K 3

Declarer is running off a long suit. Clearly West must keep his four spades to match dummy. However, it is equally important for East to keep his seemingly worthless doubleton. If he throws a spade, he will show out on ♠ AK and declarer has a marked finesse to score both dummy’s ♠ Q10

South Deals
None Vul
K 3 2
K 10 3 2
A 3
8 6
J 9 7 5
J 10 9 4
10 6 3
W   E
J 9 7 4
8 6
Q 8 7 5
9 8 5
A Q 10 5
A Q 4
K 6 2
7 4 2
West North East South
      1 ♠
Pass 2 ♣ Pass 2 N1
Pass 7 N2 Pass Pass
  1. 15-19 balanced (after a Two-over-One).
  2. Optimistic — 37 points is the guideline for 7 NT with two balanced hands.

West led ♦ J, declarer winning dummy’s ♦ A and East signalling with ♦ 8 (throw high means aye). Declarer promptly cashed ♣ AKQJ — what should East-West discard? 

East could not afford to discard a spade (recalling declarer’s 1 ♠ opener) or he would present declarer with a fourth spade trick. A heart discard would be as bad; — exposing the position when he showed out on ♥ AK, enabling declarer to finesse against West’s ♥ J. East had to let go ♦ 5. Declarer threw ♦ 6 and West, similarly, had to keep a spade to avoid showing out on the second round, and a heart to keep four cards to match dummy. He had to let go ♦ 4

Declarer could have succeeded via a third- round finesse in either major. When he cashed the three top cards (the percentage play), he was one down.

Books, Flippers and Arrow Packs
Mobile Phone

The Bridge Club now has a mobile phone which will be on during play on both evenings so that members can be contacted if need be, the number is - 07840237616

Tuesday Pairs
Director: Chris Parkin
Scorer: Sally Stuttard
Thursday Pairs
Director: Chris P
Scorer: Chris P
Tuesday Duplicate
Director: Chris Parkin
Scorer: Sally Stuttard