Sunday, November 20, 2011

Bridge Blog 472: Swiss miss

          Did I mention a while back how I love Swiss team games? I do. There’s the camaraderie, the frequent score checking, the thrill of trying to improve your team’s standing from round to round. Plus there’s almost certainly the prospect of earning master points, no matter how fractionally small.
          It was in this spirit that I forsook Saturday’s double session triple point pairs game at the Airport Bridge Club and opted for the Sunday triple point Swiss teams. Plus I needed to rake up all my leaves and do all my laundry – chores that had been neglected since the beginning of the Niagara Falls, Ont., Regional Tournament nearly two weeks ago.
          We seemed to have a competitive foursome – me and Mike Silverman, both Life Masters now, paired up with Art Mathies, who’s a better player than his point count indicates after two years of competition, and Usha Khurana, who’s progressing well these days.
          It turned out to be a four-team Swiss, which meant that we faced each of the other three teams twice. With triple points, first overall and first in the B strat were worth more than three points each. So half the field would score big. Even if we washed out, we’d get a quarter point for each round we won. So at least we’d win something. Or would we?
First time around, we were skunked thoroughly. We missed games that our opponents bid and made. I mishandled a Jacoby transfer bid over interference. Silverman doubled a 5 Diamond contract that the other team made (we went down one at 3 NT). And so on. I tried to rally the troops after our pizza lunch by saying that we had just warmed up, but we really hadn’t. Closest we came was a one International Match Point loss to the Judi Marshall-Nancy Wolstoncroft team. We were shut out completely.
I had hoped that this final chance for triple points would plump up my November totals, since I’m going to miss most of next week due to Thanksgiving obligations at home. But nooooo. I’ve still got 11.51 points at the club for the month. Add my regional tournament take and it’s nearly 25. Best month of the year, to be sure, but it could be so much better.

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