Intimidation

Most experienced duplicate players have from time to time run into other players who try to gain an advantage through intimidation – obviously a big part of competitive bridge is mental and playing mind games with your opponents is all part of the game. But when it crosses the line into … [Read more...]

To the Nines

My partner Christine and I had never enjoyed much success at bridge tournaments in knockout competitions, which offer great possibilities for winning MasterPoints in bunches. Usually we got knocked out in the first round and we would do well if we survived even one round. We turned the corner in a … [Read more...]

The Common Game

Some duplicate bridge players still refuse to play hands from The Common Game, believing that the hands are made extra hard by an evil computer or dealing machine that won’t let you make anything. It's a myth that seems impossible to stamp out, especially among some less experienced players. Of … [Read more...]

No Reno

Last year around this time I was able to send out a triumphant message: “New Orleans, here we come!” when my partner Christine and I placed second in the Florida District playoffs of the North American Pairs competition, Division B, thus qualifying for the nationals this past spring in New … [Read more...]

Tampa pre-empt doesn’t scare Eagles fan

TAMPA, FL - The people of Tampa Bay proved to be very congenial hosts when Christine Matus and I decided to spend a weekend there around the Buccaneers’ NFL home game against our former home team, the Philadelphia Eagles, on Sunday (10-13-2013). Walking the streets of Ybor City the night before … [Read more...]

5 diamond sacrifice in Vero Beach

VERO BEACH, Fla - While on a weekend visit to Central Florida, my partner Christine Matus and I wanted to check out what is supposed to be one of the top five, eight or nine bridge clubs in the country, the Vero Beach Bridge Club. We were initially told that on Sunday, the day we had available to … [Read more...]

Aggressive interference kept opponents out of game

KING OF PRUSSIA, PA - I couldn't play as much as I had wanted at the annual Valley Forge Regional duplicate bridge tournament this year (2013) because of previously scheduled travel and a family visit, but I was on a team that did earn a couple of red MasterPoints for winning one match and getting … [Read more...]

An unusual Grand Slam: Down 6 doubled, but a great bid

Grand Slam bids are pretty rare in bridge. Bidding a Grand Slam with only 1 high-card point in your hand is even rarer -- and few if any bridge players would even dream of doing such a thing. But yours truly, otherwise known as the "bridge burglar," did exactly that on Thursday night in a Swiss … [Read more...]

Optimists don’t fare well in Reston

RESTON, Va - I should have known better than to try and squeeze in a late-night bridge game after the annual visit to my tax accountant, which is always a pretty exhausting exercise. But since I still use the same accountant who has served me well since the days I lived in the DC area in the ‘80s … [Read more...]

Stealing bids, parking spaces at the Black-Eyed Susan

PIKESVILLE, MD - The Black-Eyed Susan Spring Sectional duplicate bridge tournament this past weekend (March 22-24, 2013) in the Baltimore, Maryland, suburb of Pikesville turned out to be dangerous place for bridge burglars like me – but not necessarily at the bridge table. First of all, it was … [Read more...]