Picture of New Members Learning to Play Bridge

Today we started off our meeting with a lot of new members, where we all gathered around to learn about the basics of playing bridge. A lot of the new members had to go early on, so we will be learning about bidding next meeting.

A game of Bridge

The rest of the day, we split into groups so that regular members could play and beginners could learn. The regular members were able to get a few good full deals in and learned today about the Jacoby transfer a technique in the SAYC bidding system to transfer the declarer role in the suit played to the stronger hand.

At the end of the meeting, after most of the club left, Chris and I decided to try out a Bridge Base Online(BBO) tournament. Unlike Funbridge tournaments, BBO tournaments didn’t require one to have a number of saved-up deals and there were BBO tournaments at any time of the day.

We entered the 4906th Express Swiss-Pairs Tournament, as that was the tournament up at the time. During the first 4 rounds, our score went up and down, losing 5-7 IMPs and then winning another 11 IMPs. However, things started to go downhill during the 5th round, we underbid a 2NT contract, but this should mean that we were guranteed to make the contract and a couple of IMPs. However, due to stalling from the opponents, the round ended before the last 2 tricks and for some reason, the BBO bot awarded the last 2 tricks to the other team, even though we could claim those tricks. So we ended with 2NT-2 and some -5 IMPS. Things continued to go downhill as we would underbid and misplay the 6th and 7th rounds, though only losing a couple of IMPs we could have gained 10s of IMPs. In the last round, we were disconnected and thus the round wasn’t scored.

Overall the tournament still went pretty well for our first BBO tournament without knowing all the rules. Adding all the IMPs up we actually ended with a positive score of 1.35 IMPs and ranked 21/48, so in the top half of our first tournament. Now that we know about the timing of the rounds, we have easy room to improve our Bridge skills.

BBO Results

At the end of the day, this was our best meeting yet, we had a lot of new students, some of the regular members now all knew how to play and were able to get a few full deals in and we were able to complete our first BBO tournament.