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Otago/Southland News

Wow, it’s been over 6 months since most of you have heard from me. For most of you, that’ll be too short of a time—and for that I apologise.

The Otago Club lost a lot of momentum over lockdown, but due to a strong effort of the development committee, we have welcomed 23 new players into the Novice division (our set of lessons got interrupted by the lock-downs). We’ve almost picked back up to our ‘normal’ levels of bridge—but almost isn’t good enough for our new President, Rob Lawson. They’re currently administering a survey to gauge the reasons people aren’t playing more bridge, and around 200 members of the club have responded so far. This will hopefully provide a lot of useful information for the club to foster growth and facilitate better bridge locally.

Since tournament bridge has restarted, we’ve run a fair share, although not as many as some would like (sadly the South Island Pairs got cancelled at the eleventh hour). While we should all be feeling like winners, and be celebrating the ability to play face-to-face bridge, it also feels appropriate to celebrate the high achievers in each of the following tournaments:

Winton Open Pairs Jul 18, 2020

The first tournament after the spate of cancelled ones, good time to see who is in form for the coming tournaments maybe?

1st Moss Wylie / Kevin Skoropada    63.62
2nd  Lindsay Glover / Greg Buzzard    63.14
3rd Muriel Mathieson / Noeline Eason  55.93



Otago Junior Pairs Jul 19, 2020

It’s been a while since I’ve seen a matchpoint tie for an event like this, so well done to all four of the winners.

1st= AnneMarie Tangney / Steve Moratti  55.91
1st= Corinna Laurie / Lesley Martin    55.91
3rd Wendy Copeland / Kaye McNabb 55.45

 Moratti Tangney 2020.png              
Corinna Laurie, Lesley Matin, Steve Moratti
and AnneMarie Tangney

Taieri Graded Pairs Jul 25, 2020
You might remember the names Annemarie and Steve from the Junior pairs theweek before. They went straight from winning a Junior event to placing in an Open event. A very impressive performance!

So too was the second session of the winners, following up a pretty reasonable 68% with a humungous 76% in the afternoon.

1st  Glenn Coutts / Brad Johnston    72.12
2nd  Graham Dale / Vivienne Clifford-Marsh  59.94
3rd Annemarie Tangney / Steve Moratti  59.08

Otago Swiss Pairs Aug 2, 2020

The club scoring program crashed on the day, so this event was hand-scored on a spreadsheet. In the last round the two hitherto undefeated pairs faced off, and Sheehy-Mountain beat Coutts-Johnston by 11 IMPs to claim first place.

1st  Peter Mountain / Frances Sheehy  84.88
2nd  Sam Coutts / Brad Johnston    83.24
3rd  Greg Buzzard / Marilyn Jackson    80.59

 Peter Mountain Frances Sheehy 2020.png
  Peter Mountain and Frances Sheehy

Invercargill Junior Pairs Aug 22, 2020
I can’t report too closely on this event; having not been there – but it seems a very close scoring affair – with a top of 54.50% and 3rd place only 1.5% behind. Sounds like it was closely contested by everyone.

1st Corinna Laurie / Jane Whitmore    54.50
2nd  Dave Affleck / Trevor Murdoch    54.00
3rd Sonya Adams / Bridget McCaughan  53.00


Invercargill Intermediate Pairs Aug 22, 2020

Our second tie in the standings, fittingly for second this time. Elaine and Judith had a clear margin for first however.

1st  Elaine Moir / Judith Lawton    60.27
2nd=  Karen Palmer-Hall / Diana Easson  55.81
2nd=  Jen White / Sandy Buzzard    55.81


Wanaka Intermediate Pairs Sep 12, 2020
Local superwomen Lindsay Gunn started her double-barrelled weekend by directing in Wanaka. By all reports this went smoothy...

1st  Blair Corlet / Doug Hall      58.64
2nd  Jeanette Gillies / Jane Hamilton    58.32
3rd  Robert Kaplan / Dorothy Fennell  56.72


Balclutha Open Pairs Sep 13, 2020

As did the second event, despite her spending ~9 hours driving between Wanaka, Dunedin, and Balclutha to direct them both!

1st  Lydia Turley / Brad Johnston    61.54
2nd Vivienne Clifford-Marsh / Graham Dale  57.91
3rd  Pam Strang / Stewart Strang    56.73


Winton Open Pairs Sep 19, 2020
Christchurch were holding a 5A/5A Congress this weekend, so I wasn’t present at this event. A popular win, and significant for a reasons to be disclosed ahead.

1st Kristen Collins / Donna Ruwhiu    63.48
2nd  Jean-Olivier Begouin / Ernie Sutton  59.04
3rd  Phillip Hensman / Anne M McGregor  58.56


Taieri Junior Pairs Sep 27, 2020
Otago/Southland have had difficulty with attracting pairs to similar events at the best of times. So, it was good to see 17 pairs keen to compete at Taieri.

1st  Jen Macartney / Patsy Williams    59.05
2nd  John Aitcheson / Dawn Brieseman  57.94
3rd  Carl Pedersen / Blair Corlet   56.49


Invercargill 5A Pairs Sep 27, 2020
The first of the ‘Congress replacement’ events hosted by the region, this one was directed ably by Craig Rodgers under Moss’ supervision.

1st Moss Wylie / Kevin Skoropada    64.17
2nd  Anne Somerville / Kay Shand    63.64
3rd  Arleen Schwartz / Murat Genc    63.45


Otago 5A Swiss Pairs Oct 3, 2020
Otago decided to hold a Swiss Pairs event alongside a Teams event the following weekend, to help the IP pairs practice. Eidler-Genc went undefeated over 7 rounds to have a comfortable margin of victory here.

1st Dean Eidler / Murat Genc    97.91
2nd  Arleen Schwartz / Chris Ackerley  90.03
3rd  Kevin Skoropada / Anne Somerville  87.02


Otago 5A Teams Oct 4, 2020
A late surge from the Johnstone team might have caught the Coutts team if there was another round to play, but Coutts were able to grab the lead after round 1 and hold on to it through the entire event.

1st Glenn Coutts / Sam Coutts / Graeme Stout / Jeff Miller                               89.29 VPs

2nd Michael Johnstone / Paula Gregory / Anne Somerville / Kevin Skoropada 82.53 VPs

3rd Chris Ackerley / Arleen Schwartz / Pamela Nisbet / Peter McCaskill            74.24 VPs

Gore Open Pairs Oct 10, 2020
This is a huge result for David and Murray, and more so considering that Wylie-Skoropada posted a 69% score in the morning to be quite clear of the field. In other news, Kristen Collins collected the last B points she needed to tick over to being a Grandmaster from this result, which is another fantastic outcome of the day.

1st  David Larsen / Murray Barron    65.80
2nd  Kristen Collins / Donna Ruwhiu    62.57
3rd  Moss Wylie / Kevin Skoropada    61.43

 Kristen Collins Donna Ruwhiu 2020.png                Graeme Stout Jeff Thompson 2020.png
Kristen Collins and Donna Ruwhiu           Graeme Stout and Jeff Thompson             

Otago/Southland Congress - Open Pairs Oct 24, 2020
Wonder women Lindsay was back, directing two events with different movements, round times, and scoring methods, in a room that’d be small for one event without a timing clock. She was able to handily manage this task, as were Stout-Thompson when faced with the task of doing good things at the table.

1st Graeme Stout / Jeff Thompson    63.66
2nd  Alan Grant / Jane Lennon    59.29
3rd  Samuel Coutts / Brad Johnston    59.04


Otago/Southland Congress - Intermediate Pairs Oct 24, 2020
The Intermediates had to deal with the same playing conditions as above; but had the added joy of using travellers. Unperturbed by this, Bridget and Sonya proved successful on the day.

1st Bridget McCaughan / Sonya Adams    58.54
2nd Elaine Moir / Judith Lawton      55.63
3rd Linda Dow / John Dow      54.38


Otago/Southland Congress - Open Teams Oct 25, 2020
There were 14 teams for this event, although it took until after the dealing had been done for the last one to materialise. The chosen format was a full round robin over 2 days; which gave each team a fair shot at all of their competitors. Although not mentioned here, pride of place in my mind goes to the Intermediate Inter-provincial team; who beat the Gregory team, the Coutts team (Coutts / Skipper / Coutts / Johnston), and narrowly lost to the Ackerley team.  Chris later told me that he had what he felt was the best score card he’d ever had in that set. The fact that they went blow-for-blow with a seasoned team that was running hot is very commendable.

1st Pamela Nisbet / Jan Cormack / Mindy Wu / Murat Genc      175.32
2nd  Paula Gregory / Michael Johnstone / Moss Wylie / Greg Buzzard    169.46
3rd  Chris Ackerley / Arleen Schwartz / Margaret Perley / Paul Freeland  165.30

 Mindy  Murat  Jan C   pAMELA 2020.png
  Mindy Wu, Murat Genc, Jan Cormack and Pamela Nisbet

Otago/Southland Congress - Intermediate Teams Oct 25, 2020
One disadvantage of having so many teams in the Open event in these clubrooms was that only 4 teams fronted up to the Intermediate event. They also played a complete round robin, but the lower number of matches will explain the lower VP totals that some eagle-eyed readers might have noticed.

1st Karen Palmer-Hall / Lee Davies / Judith Lawton / Elaine Moir    44.20
2nd  Judy Russell / Pam Hodgkinson / Cath Preen / Annemarie Pavletich  35.37
3rd  Margaret Fraser / Jan Lenton / Blair Corlet / Carl Pendersen    26.81


Some southern clubs also competed in the Babich, and while these aren’t the most impressive placings on a national level; they’re still good results and should be acknowledged.

Babich Results — Otago Southland

Rank Names Club % Field Place
1st  Brian Papps & Dennis Norman Oamaru 64.17 17th
2nd  Joy Hughes & Jan Ireland Alexandra 64.15 18th
3rd  Lynne Fegan & Georgie Roberts Wanaka 62.75 29th


Coming up there are the Inter-provincials in Wellington, good luck to all of the following players representing the Otago-Southland region.

Open                                                                                       Women

Moss Wylie – Anne Somerville                                               Donna Ruwhiu - KristenCollins

Sam Coutts – Brad Johnston                                                   Frances Sheehy – Ann Wood

Intermediate                                                                          Seniors

Sandy Buzzard – Jen White                                                    Graeme Stout – Jeff Miller

Jo Smith – Jeff Elton                                                               Phillip Hensman – Hamish Ryan

 Chef de Mission      Philip Noye

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