Last weekend Wexford held its annual bridge congress at Whites Hotel. The Congress Committee down there operate a tight show and in 3-4 years directing down there I have not seen anything break from a committee point of view.
Even when the Sinn Fein Ard Dheis showed up on the same weekend and managed to take the large function room (presumably above committee done a deal) nothing changed. By all accounts a small well functioning committee. I cannot name them as I don't know all their names exactly.
This year they added a new item or else their region did.
All Wexford Congress results are posted on this site.
Two Malahide members won the 2nd session of the Intermediate Pairs ..
74 pairs took part which is a large event and anyone who got a prize out of this worked hard for it.
We had 31 pairs in the Congress Pairs won by Katherine Lennon and Derek Crosbie despite a major Dublin player insisting they should be 2nd seeds in my 3 grouped seeding approach before the start.
I personally as director ranked the pairs as 1 2 or 3 in strength and spread them across the 3 fields equally. Generally any pair containing a trials player or international was deemed a 1.
Meanwhile up North in NIBU land there seems to be some discussion going on regarding the selection of NIBU Camrose Team for the 2nd weekend.
Currently Bridge Great Britian lists a team containing 4th 5th and 7th places on the trials but
the grapevine indicates that the original team will take their seats for battle.
NIBU perennially place 5th or 6th and recently some years they might manage 5th and 6th if they
are final weekend hosts. The problem is once the trials are over and probably before they don't do any training. Anderson Greenwood play tough matches on BBO almost daily so they are putting in the bridge gym work as such.
Top Irish pair Mesbur and Fitzgibbon are still doing bidding practice every week maybe 2-3 hours despite being a 40 year bridge partnership. The Irish Open team can be seen doing BBO practice matches with some Polish opponents and world class coach Krystoff Martens is involved in this exercise too.
I understand Michael Byrne from Manchester has visited or will visit NIBU to provide some training.
Michael has also turned up in Dublin to make up the 8 for a training weekend with the Irish Open Team some years back.
I don't know all the details of the NIBU team discussion but it is possible the selection committee dropped the first weekend team and later a more muscular committee over wrote that decision.
Meanwhile last night a lady approached me in Malahide asking what was the meaning of something about ethics in the Sunday Independent last Sunday in Mr Comyn's column. I have not seen the article so I don't know what it was about. I might find out if I can find a house that bought the Indo last Sunday. One used to be able to read the Sunday Indo in Maurice Quinns on a Tuesday.
John Cunningham a former Mullingar area bridge man passed away last weekend. John was already losing his sight by the time I got to be an opponent and that's over 20 years ago. I think he had also cut down his bridge playing by then too. However I recall having a few discussions as bridge technology developed in the early 2000s connected with Mullingar Bridge Centre....probably about dealing machine or hand records or some such item. It was long before bridgemates surfaced.
John was a top player but I only saw the end of his playing career. Rest in peace.