First match this morning was against a Welsh team with familiar faces from the Camrose. However when Rory Boland went down in 4S to lose 13 imps it looked like more of the same. However Ireland rallied to lose no more imps over the next 13 boards.. not one solitary imp .. 68 imps in the IN column for a 19.61 victory.
Given Rory Boland is a capable declarer one needed to examine Board 4 a little further. So here it is
However Boland in South got the SPADE 4 lead ...and now things are not so clear.
8 tricks on top and many ways to look for 10 ... several of them not working.
The full hand can be found on the European Bridge League website at the link below
For the Irish Open Team despite being 22 VPS out of Bermuda with 120 VPS to play for it is not gone yet. Some big teams have to battle each other and if the TOP 4 crush the chasers and Ireland get a large run of Irish luck or maybe play well things could happen ..Playing well helps luck though.
Just like in the soccer against Italy .. you cannot win the match if you play the game in your own half.
Meanwhile the Irish Ladies team continue to struggle and this was expected as despite being at the top of the Irish ladies game more is required. A fair share of good luck would also be required.
The Irish Ladies have 4 matches left TURKEY SPAIN ESTONIA BULGARIA AND 12 points for the BYE. Maybe they could score 64 out of 100 ..to finish well. Its raining in Swords.
Recently I prepared some hands for one of the English Ladies pairs and one of them came back to me after bidding the 63 hands and gushed that those hands were magic .. I presumed she was just hoping for more so I went ahead and made another set.
Last night I saw two Irish ladies who have both played in European championships in the past bid these hands and issues in the bidding arose on about every 2nd hand. One could estimate 6 imps for each issue and 10 of these is 60 imps out the door. Things like Grand Slam is cold as the cards lie but our two decent players languish in 3NT "because it might be the right spot"
If GRAND is cold then one should be making a small slam try at the minimum.
Arguably Irelands premier bridge partnership Adam Mesbur and Nick Fitzgibbon are in the partnership bidding room at least 2 nights a week so if its good for the gander its good for the goose and any other ganders who want.
A friend of mine Paul Delaney used to say "Training and Dedication " beats "Well done partner "
This is not exactly the quote but I don't recall the exact context but the gist was I don't need congrats on every average contract I make .
Two many pairs get into the habit of "Well Done partner " ...for making a normal game or making 10 tricks when there are 11 there.
Meanwhile the Irish Senior Team have closed to within 12 VPs of qualification for the Seniors Bermuda Bowl .. d'ORSI Cup I think it is called. I am hoping they will close the gap and qualify.
It is very possible but very tough.
Now Mesbur and Fitzgibbon is not all about good bidding and good play and good defence ..
They have those things in spades ..
6 Clubs bid by our intrepid duo ... Mesbur and Fitzgibbon ...
Now to be outdone Boland and Moran also dipped into the pot of Irish luck..
6 Clubs bid and made also ..
Hanlon and McGann decided to sacrifice in 5H and that got doubled and gone for 800.
So we needed the slam to cancel that out. I doubt it bidding 5H is a winner in the long run but
these boys seem to like living dangerously.
So lets go watch some bridge .. Some big battles are taking place on BBO ..
Poland versus Sweden in the OPEN might be worth a look ..