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Wellington News with Paul Maxwell

Do you remember your first A Point?

It seems that the urge for overseas travel has burst out - in the form of internal travel to other regions’ bridge tournaments. The result is that we’re all playing so much bridge these days that I’ve hardly time to write this update, and you probably don’t have enough time to read it.

This urge to travel extends to more than the top Open players, with Open Restricted and Intermediate players joining in. The regrading of some Open players has also helped increase the entries from Intermediate players into many Multigrade and Intermediate tournaments. It’s good to see bigger fields.

Local Tournaments

The Karori Club held the regional 3A Mixed Sex Pairs, as usual, on Easter Monday. Prizes were awarded in three grade categories. First in the Bronze group were local players, Pauline Edwards and Klaus Dorbecker, both Intermediates. They also came 6th overall out of the 30 pairs, so each got their first full A point.

  That neat first A Point and a bottle to celebrate                                 Two with just a few more As

 Pauline Edwards Klaus Dorbecker 21.jpg                                                            Anne Marie Russell and Nigel Kearney 2021.png
Pauline Edwards and Klaus Dorbecker                                                                That's Anne-Marie Russell and Nigel Kearney adding
                                                                                                                  to their totals at Karori. In between them is Karori Past President,
                                                                                                                  Annette Prebble

Prafulla Hegde and Arvind Zodgekar, came first in the Silver group.

Anne-Marie Russell and Nigel Kearney were the overall winners. 70% in the second session sent them to an average in the mid-sixties, well ahead of the rest of the field. <<photo, with Annette Prebble, past President of the Karori Club>>

There were 28 pairs in the Victoria Multigrade held on the 11th of April. Most entries, by far, were Open/Intermediate or both Intermediate. Kate Davies and John Patterson came first, from Graham Stronach and Bill Gardner, all Open grade players. Next was the first Open/Intermediate pair of Nan Wehipeihana and Basia Arnold. Judy Simpson and Julie Wright, the first both Intermediate pair, were 4th.

South Wairarapa’s Intermediate Tournment was held the week before the Wellington Congress, a good chance to warm up. Judith Smith and Clare Crossling topped the 33 pairs, ahead of Simon Webber and Jeffry Craanan.

Wellington Congress

Michael Ware and Malcolm Mayer had a great Congress. They shot out to a big lead in the Open Pairs. But, in perhaps their biggest (and only) lapse of the weekend, they didn’t quite make 50% in the third session, enabling Nick Jacob and GeOTislevoll to overtake them for first place.

 Nick Jacob and GeO 2021.jpg          Michael Ware and Malcolm Mayer 2021.jpg
      Nick Jacob and GeO Tislevoll  snuck past  Michael Ware and Malcolm Mayer at the
 crucial moment. Regional Chairperson, Mindy Wu, celebrates with the two pairs.

16 pairs entered the Open Restricted grade, won by Marsha Woodbury and Virginia Warren, ahead of the Wellington region locals, Alex Drummond and David Esterman. The Intermediate competition attracted 32 pairs, once we add in the Juniors. Alar Treial and Royce Johnston won from Karen Oswald and Darren McCutcheon.

Michael and Malcolm (yes, those guys again), with locals Peter Newell and Martin Reid, won the Open teams. Our other successful locals, tieing for 4th place, were:  Pat D’Arcy, Graeme Norman, Peter Delahunty,  Lynda Rigler and Alan Grant, Murray McMillan, Anthony Ker, Kathy Ker.

                                                       Wellington Successes

                                                 Joint   Fourth                                                      Open Restricted Winners

 Pat D'Arcy Graeme Norman Linda Rigler Peter Delahunty 2021.jpg   Alan Grant Murray McMillan Kers.jpg  alex Drummond  David Esterman 2021.jpg
Pat D'Arcy, Graeme Norman,                             Alan Grant, Murray McMillan, Anthony            Alex Drummond, Sophie Atkin and
Peter Delahunty and Lynda Rigler                     and Kathy Ker                                          David Esterman (missing: Helen Fitzgerald)

There were 10 teams contesting the Open Restricted Teams. Illness resulted in a last minute change to the Michael team, but this didn’t completely ruin their day. The rejigged team came first ; Alex Drummond, Sophie Atkin, David Esterman and Helen Fitzgerald.

Megan Eddy, Bridget Wilcox, Barbara Robinson and Carol Dickson were yet more successful visitors, winning the Intermediate teams, ahead of the team from the Kapi Mana club.

                                                      Top Intermediate Teams

                                             First                                        Second

         Megan Eddy Bridget Wilcox Barbara Robinson Carol Dickson 21.jpg          Mac and Ynis Faatafa.jpg                                                         
          Megan Eddy, Bridget Willcox                Mac Faatafa, Kaye McCredie,
         Barbara Robinson and Carol Dickson Ynys Faatafa and Yvonne Helps


Michael and Malcolm continued their winning way in the final event, the 3A Swiss Pairs. Johnny Davidson and Jack James were second. Lynda Rigler and Peter Delahunty came third, the only pair to win all six matches.

The Hutt Bridge Club held its Open and Junior tournaments on the same day, 16th May. The 30 pair Open went once round for each session, a 60 board match. Les Gould and Gary Duncan headed off Pat and Martin Oyston, with Jan Whyte and Ken Bateman third. There were 12 pairs in the Junior tournament. Pam McLean and Clive Phillips, of the Kapi Mana club, led from locals Neil Sargisson and Jacob Pilalis, with a 6% margin to third place.

Meanwhile, Paraparaumu was running its Intermediate. This time, their locals, Francie Vagg and Pauline Reid, prevailed. Hutt visitors, Jeffry Craanen and Simon Webber, repeated their second placing of the South Wairarapa Intermediate.

Our most recent tournament has been the Otaki Multigrade, with a full house of 48 pairs. Nebojsa Djorovic and Donna Upchurch, averaging 64%, were first, with Ruth Brucker and Sandy McKirdy, 62.7%, second. Anne Baird-Horner and Tim Horner were 4th, the first Otaki club members. The other grade placings were:


 Nebosja Djorovic and Donna Upchurch 2021.jpg
Nebojsa Djorovic, Otaki President
 Basia Arnold and Donna Upchurch


Grade Combination


Open & Intermediate

Jane Windle and Pam Loader

Intermediate & Intermediate

David Steele and Sheridan Evans

Intermediate & Junior

Anne Verboeket and Vicki Boffa

Junior & Junior

Ann and Bruce Barnett


The first two of the above pairs came 7th equal, averaging 56%.

Inter-Provincial Trials

We held the IP trials on the 8th May, looking for the two top pairs in each category to set up our four teams. With few entries, the Regional Committee chose to select an Open team of Peter Newell and Martin Reid, Alan Grant and Antony Ker. Congratulations also to the following top two pairs in each category: (Seniors) Nebojsa Djorovic & Derek Snelling, Patrick D'Arcy & Graeme Norman, (Women) Joan McCarthy & Joan Waldvogel, Mindy Wu & Sandra Coleman, (Intermediate) Chris Woods & Lee Miller, Jeremy Morley & Simon Louisson.


Interclub has just completed its third round. The leading teams at this stage are:



Number of Teams




8 teams

Wellington 1

Annette Henry

Restricted Open

10 teams

Wellington 4

Margie Michael


26 teams

Kapi Mana 1

Tracey Shields


16 teams

Hutt 1

Neil Sargisson


The second place in the Junior/Novice group is held by Kairangi 2, the Sarah de Groot team, one of the five novice teams.

Rubber Bridge

At this stage of our local Rubber Bridge competition, when I last looked, we had 16 pairs still in with a chance. I expect the next update will drop this considerably, but I’m in no hurry to look. One of the 16 is a Novice pair, and I’d like to think they might still be in there, competing for awhile longer.

Local Ladders

Each year, the Regional Committee presents trophies, some going back nearly fifty years, to the persons getting

 (1) the most A points in Wellington region events

 (2) topping Intermediate Tournaments (scoring is 5 for a win, 4 for second, etc), and (3) the winner of the Junior League (scoring - complex, but it covers most bases).

At this time, the leaders in those three ladders are (before the audit checks): Open - Alan Grant/ Anthony Ker, Intermediate - Jeffry Craanan/ Simon Webber, and Junior - Neil Sargisson.

Looking Ahead

As well as many club tournaments, there is the Wellington Regional Teams tournament at the end of June. We’ll also hold a social event in mid-July for local clubs, where teams of 4 pairs, one in each grading (O, OR, I & J) compete for prestige and a well-polished cup.

Much further out, in early September, we aim to hold a meeting of the twelve local clubs. It’s time for a catch-up.


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