The Thursday, Feb. 7, Island Bridge Club (IBC) game — with a blizzard imminent — saw 24 duplicate players getting in one more competitive evening. Dan and Nancy Cabot took first place with a 60.37 percent average game. In second place was the team of David Donald and Rich Colter, close behind the Cabots, with a 59.63 percent average game. And in third place were Bea Phear and Cecily Greenaway with a 59.26 percent average game. It was a tough, tight, competitive evening with less than one percentage point separating the win, place, and show finishers.
On Tuesday, Feb. 5, at the Martha’s Vineyard Bridge Club (MVBC), Cecily Greenaway and Bill Blakesley took first place with a 63.89 percent average game. Bob Iadiciccio and Gail Farrish came in second place with a 57.64 percent average game, and in third place were David Donald and Michel Riel with a 54.86 percent game.
Tips for better play
Life Master Ed Russell, an Island Bridge Club director, was reminded a winning formula by a situation that came up recently. “Good communication, keen observation, and trusting your partner are three good tips for any winning bridge team,” he says.
“When defending against No Trump, the defense has only a limited amount of time to take their tricks, so communication is very important.
“Against three No trump, I led the five of Diamonds and my partner knew that since she could not see the two of Diamonds on the board, her Jack won the trick and the declarer played the four of Diamonds, it was very likely that I had the two and thus five Diamonds (leading the fourth from the longest and strongest).
“The dummy had three Diamonds to the Ace, thus the declarer had two Diamonds.
“My partner led back a Diamond and declarer now wisely knew to let my King win the trick.
“This meant that the next Diamond trick would cut off communication in that suit when the Ace on the board won the trick.
“Now it was my turn to lead and knock out that Ace of Diamonds. I had three different cards I could lead but which one was correct?
“I also happened to have an entry to the board with the Ace of Spades.
“The card I chose to lead therefore was the Queen of Diamonds — the highest remaining Diamond. This signaled my partner, ‘if you get in, lead back the high suit.’ When declarer lost a finesse to my partner in the Heart suit, she lead back a Spade to defeat the contract even though from her hand a Club lead would have been more likely.
“Watch every card.”
The American Contract Bridge League (ACBL) sanctions three duplicate bridge clubs on Martha’s Vineyard although it is not necessary to belong to the ACBL in order to join these duplicate competitions.
The MVBC game is held on Tuesday evenings at 7:30 pm at the Stone Church in Vineyard Haven. Admission is $4. Contact Sue at 508-693-9396 or firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance in finding an available partner.
The IBC game is held Thursday evenings at 7 pm at Howes House in West Tisbury. Players needing a partner are urged to contact Gerry at 508-693-2889 or email@example.com by noon on Wednesday for assistance. Admission is $5.
The Edgartown Bridge Club (EBC) meets on Monday afternoons at 12:30 pm at the Edgartown Yacht Club. Players need to come with a partner, and admission is $6. Novice players wishing to be matched up with an experienced player need to contact Gail Farrish at 508-627-5476.