Sunday, June 6, 2010

Gartaganis in the Open and Murray in the Seniors

After a very close match with the lead changing all the time, Gartaganis has emerged and won this year CNTC over Korbel. GONGRATULATIONS!

Was a very exciting match with truly some great hands, some difficult decisions and some great plays. Too bad we had to have a losing team. A lot was said about playing 4 handed. I don't believe such stuff. I like to play all the time and when you do, you tend to miss very little. Of course you will make mistakes but then again who doesn't. My personal opinion only. I know I will be alone thinking that.

It is probably the wrong time to mention this but most of the time it was plainly the team bidding more aggressively that won IMPS. Korbel had an extremely successful 6th set by bidding everything in sight while Gartagnis did the opposite in the 7th set (if you go watch where they report the scores they have it wrong in the 6th set but it will be corrected). To tell you, don't be afraid to go down. I am sure I have gone more often in my life that I have made it!

Congratulations to the Murray team as well for winning the Seniors. I did not view nor comment this final so I have little to say about it but I am sure this was also an exciting match. Too bad we had to have a losing team, Flock, over there as well - the final score was 114-110...

Well this is my final comment. Hope everyone liked this year's CNTC. We had everything ranging from great bridge to exciting matches. Can't ask for more!

Congratulations again to:
Gartaganis winning the Open
Cimon winning the Women
Murray winning the Seniors
Liu winning the B

See you all next year but this time as a player...:)
Nick L'Ecuyer

Friday, June 4, 2010

Cimon winning the CWTC and Korbel vs Gartaganis in the CNTC final

Congratulations to the Cimon team for winning the Canadian Women Team Championship. Nicely done! Bravo!

The Canadian Open Team Championship final starts today and the match-up will be Korbel vs Gartaganis. I think I will not file any prediction because I have been let's say not so good so far :). But in any case, whoever wins, we will be proud of that team and may the best team wins!

In yesterday's semi-finals I thought one hand (others also of course) deserved some comments.

The players held at UNFAV:
Most players heard a 1H opening on their right and simply overcalled 1Sp and then the auctions proceeded differently but some tables did not get that start. At the Gartaganis table, the opening bid was 1Cl (strong) and the auction proceeded
1Cl - 1Sp - P - 4Sp - 5H all pass and this was not a good result for your side since you are cold for 6Sp. Partner's hand was
6Sp did not have to be cold but selling out to 5H undoubled makes no sense. But who did what wrong? Hard to say since most of the time competing against a strong club is destructive and who knows what the overcaller really has. That brings up my point:
-- over a strong club one should have a bid that says:
I have reasons to believe this is our hand and that bid should be the X of 1Cl. Otherwise how can one survive these auctions without being guessing? Even with this treatement you may or may not survive it but at least they will be doubled. I like to play - and that is strictly my opinion - that X of a strong club is cards normally close to being balanced - say about a strong NT type of thing - and the next double by either partner is take out. Gets you at least in the auction with the right thinking. I have seen too often a strong clubber jumping to 4M after his opening undisturbed when the opps were cold for a game. Not easy but a suggestion. I play the same thing when the strongclubber's partner bids 1D (bad hand), then X is cards. It has risks but the risk-ratio is worth it.

CTNC-B saw Liu win it all out. Congratulations to the Liu team as well!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Quarter finals

Well as I suspected (wouhou I got my first predictions right!) the quarter final matches are:
Gartaganis - Rayner
Todd - Korbel
Janicki - Thurston
Team Whiteman - Hanna.

Congratulations to all teams that made it and all teams that gave it their best. A very tight race indeed near the end with 2 teams missing by 3 VPs. I know the feeling.

So time for my second predictions:
Not that anything is carved in stone here and I would not be surprised at all if I got all these the wrong way.

Some have asked me to comment CNTC-B and CWTC. I will with some predictions again:
Cimon over Huand
Demme over Smith
in the CWTC.

Liu over Ciura
Desrosiers over Shatilla
in the CNTC-B.

Again good luck to all and, truly, I miss you all...

Top 8

Well after 4 days of grueling bridge, we have qualified the TOP 8. In order, they are:
Team Whiteman
As of now, I don't know who the leading teams will pick as their opponents but we should know soon. I predict:
Gartaganis - Rayner
Todd - Korbel
Janicki - Thurston
Team Whiteman - Hanna
but who knows really? These teams are all good and we will have great bridge coming up. Be sure not to miss the semis and final on Thursday, Friday and Saturday on BBO.

Again good luck to all!

Last day

So we 5 matches to go, we have this ranking of the TOP 8:

310 Team Whiteman
306 Gartaganis
302 Gamble
301 Todd
296 Rayner
295 Janicki
293 Thurston
286 Altay and Hanna

Outside looking in are:
279 Jotcham
272 Korbel
with other teams holding still a slim chance.

Noteworthy was a fabulous 3rd day for Altay winning all matches and maintaining a 21 average. Bravo! Continue the good work today...

Some exciting last day coming up with plenty in store for everyone. Will we see a late comeback by the trailing teams? Anything is possible. Just think about that fabulous day by Altay's team yesterday.
Good luck to everyone!

Monday, May 31, 2010

At the halfway point

With 12 matches played and 10 to go, most of the so-called favorites are doing well and are in the TOP 8 in this long round robin. But things can change quickly. The first day leaders Simon had a difficult second day and are now lying 9th - anything is still up for grabs for many teams.
Opening a bit of daylight with with scores above 210 are Team Whiteman and Gartaganis respectively first and second.
Some teams are also looking to make a move to get into top 8 and it better be soon...

Today has a few TOP 8 matchups early in store for us:
Hanna - Gartaganis
Todd - Gamble
Jotcham - Gamble
Hanna - Rayner

And amongst the matches to end the day
Hanna - Team Whiteman

So we should have an interesting day to follow.

Keep posted...

Avec 12 matchs joués, la plupart des favoris sont dans une bonne position pour se qualifier. Mais tout peut changer rapidement comme l'a montré l'équipe de Simon qui était 1ère après la journée 1 et qui se retrouve 9e. 2 équipes avec des totaux de plus de 210 soient Team Whiteman et Gartaganis semblent de distancer quelque peu du peloton. Les équipes poursuivantes mettront de la pression aujourd'hui et on peut s'attendre à une grosse journée.
Quelques matchs pour maintenir le suspense:
Hanna - Rayner
Hanna - Gartaganis
Todd - Gamble
Jotcham - Gamble

et pour finir la journée
Team Whiteman - Hanna.

À suivre...

Sunday, May 30, 2010

First day over

After the first day and 6 matches, things are very close at the top with only 7 VPs between top team Simon and 7th team Wang. A lot of close matches in that first day.
The 8th place and final qualifying spot is held by Thurston for now but between 8th and 16th again little VPs - only 8. So lots of action to come.
What is important in these long round robins (they are trust me, 4 days, 21-22 matches) is get in a good bridge rythm with your partner/team. Your bridge has to improve as the days go by. Often, good or "favorite" teams will start slowly (remember that Canadian bridge holds very few pro players and/or partnerships therefore they need time to get in shape) and will finish strong. If your team is amongst the "non favorites" it is often a good thing to be playing the "favorite" teams early.
As a general idea, between 16 and 17 average will make it to top 8.

Some of the early matches the second day has in store:
An interesting match between Hanna and Korbel, certainly teams with good hope to win it all.
Match between Simon (leader) and 8th place Thurston. Let's see what Simon can do against these veterans...

Go luck to all today...