Friday, June 15, 2012

Bridge Blog 538: Right place, wrong time (and vice versa)

For STaC Week, the Sectional Tournament at the Clubs, I reckoned to double my chances to collect silver master points by playing twice a day – in both the morning and afternoon sessions at the Airport Bridge Club. But hitting the jackpot – winning points before and after lunch – has pretty much eluded me. On Monday with Nancy Littenburg and Tuesday with Paula Kotowski, the morning was magic, in a meager sort of way, and the afternoon was awful – dead last both days in our direction. Was lunch the culprit? My blood pressure meds? My sleep deficit?
Then on Wednesday, with Celine Murray, my luck shifted. In the morning, we posted 60.32%, first overall. Unfortunately, it was in a 4.5-table game, which for STaC purposes is considered a small game and returns smaller bonus points on a district level for the big winners. Five tables is the minimum for full-sized games. In the 6-table afternoon game, Celine and I managed only 47.5%, but still collected .74 silver points, second in the B strat in our direction.
By Thursday, with Judie Bailey, my luck had flip-flopped. In the morning session, we weren’t quite in sync, an important factor, I’ve found, when playing with Judie because we don’t reach our best bids. Our results suffered accordingly – 42.92%. Not last, but next to last. By afternoon, we were reading each other very nicely and posted a 61.22% game, first in our direction, but third overall, trailing two pairs in the other direction by a fraction.
Playing with Alicia Kolipinski on Friday, my luck not only had changed directions, but also evaporated. Our 42.14% in the morning was weak enough to be last, but was buffered by two other pairs in the 30% range. We improved to 48.02% for the afternoon, earning .78 points.
That put me within my pre-declared goal for STaC week – 5 to 10 points. I now have 5.12 – 3 of them from the two 1.5 point first-place finishes. Or maybe more. Anything over 60% stands a chance of earning extra points on a district level.

   Finally, on Friday, District 5 results for the week have been posted. Celine and I, winning our small game on Wednesday, collected 2.33 points on the district level instead of 1.5. Had it been a big game, our score would have given us 3.48. Thursday’s results haven’t yet been compiled. So let’s add .83 from Wednesday's district bonus onto that 5.12. Equaling 5.95. The games Saturday and Sunday will be gravy.

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