Shantanu Rastogi's Bridge Page
issue 63 (January 3, 2000)
In this section I would be putting together all the information regarding bridge facilites in the various cities in India.The information may be sketchy at present but would be made comprehensive in future.Lucknow Allahabad Varanasi Meerut Dehradun Ghaziabad Kanpur Moradabad Delhi Chandigarh Jaipur Mumbai Pune Asansol Durgapur Bangalore Chennai Ranchi
In this section I would cover tournaments happening in India and more so the tournaments happening in Northern part of India and in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
I wrote about decent organization of Hyderabad Winter Nationals in the previous issue. This was reflected in some other things as well. The organizers also took care to provide a nice booklet to record all the duplicate sessions and some nice deals to remember. The booklet certainly helped in eliminating litter from the playing arena. There were bulletins also though merely carrying synopsis of results and not as good as they were in Bangalore Nationals two years back. Organisers also had a very first in India -a website -which announced results of the championship on internet and which also has some deals (three exactly) from the championship though three deals aren't adequate from a ten day event.
From serious organizational business to lighter things. Playing in pairs someone comments - there aren't many ladies this time around. Well I've noticed at least one -not really a lady more of a girl. End of duplicate qualifying session and this girl passes by where we were sitting. And I had to ask my partner Mahendra Singh- who this girl is ? The look on his face said everything- you ignorant , you blind you don't even know who she is. Anju came the reply. Anju who ? Wife of Kaizad Anklesaria (Wasn't he playing for India Juniors team some time back - has a wife also).OOps. Well one thing is sure - you can't have unmarried well dressed girls in an bridge arena - these ladies simply don't teach young girls this game of bridge. Anyway whatever little glamour you can have in an bridge arena came from her. And Anju (or Mrs Anklesaria whatever you prefer) if you were there in Bangalore or Delhi how could I have missed you. In Delhi though Dr. Usha Kothari took the cake. Apart from her I could see some familiar faces from Mumbai which is hub of ladies bridge in India.
Incidently Indian ladies have done India proud by qualifying for the Venice cup from BAFAME zone while men came cropper in the Bermuda Bowl qualifying. One of the members of this team is Hema Deora who I remember as one of the extremelly well attired bridge playing lady in Mumbai. The eulogising ends here only for her husband Murli Deora is a trusted lieuteanant of our esteemed leader of opposition in parliament - the daughter in law of this country- and about whose foreign origins I have already commented on my page. Murli Deora incidently lost the parliament elections from the prestigious South Mumbai constituency to our Jayawanti ben (I bet she had the blessings of AILBA) despite having a full backing of Mr Dhiru Bhai Ambani , the Chairman of Reliance.
The inter district championship of UP is taking place at Allahabad Gymkhana, Allahabad on January 8-9, 2000.
Jagdish Agarwal Memorial Oudh Bridge Chamiponship would take place at Oudh Gymkhana , Lucknow from Feb 10-13, 2000 .
In this section I would cover one good deal which appeared in the Weekly Bridge Tournaments at Lucknow or in a recent tournament with explanations.
Another deal from Hyderabad Nationals showing the bidding!!! or simply the card sense.
I reached Hyderabad without a team or a partner but had a good fortune of not only finding a good partner but also a good combination. It is the first time I was playing in a duplicate event at the winter nationals. Starting with a zero in the first round we slowly inched our way and were in contention for the qualifying for the round of 32 till end. Some better luck in slam judgement by our partners in closed room could have resulted in our qualifying. I give credit for whatever I could achieve there to my partner -Mahendra Singh.
Mahendra Singh has been playing bridge for 25 years. An engineer with UP-PWD , he has won many trophies in UP and his recent success includes a win of Ubhayakar Trophy for National Pairs at Home. To put things in perspective I've been playing competitive bridge for only five years now though I've played bridge at college level and this has been the first winter national where I've been able to play real serious bridge.
The odd thing about Mahendra Singh is that he can be very loud at the table even when he has made a mistake though after the round is over he is candid enough to admit that he was loud. As we were playing the duplicate someone I knew commented to me that how could I tolrerate such behaviour from a scheduled caste. Yes- Mahendra Singh belongs to what in India known as scheduled castes the lowest rung of human beings in Hindu caste system and because they have been treated unfairly over the years -the Indian constitution provides them reservation in many things. I was speechless and appalled when I heard that comment. It was an insult to human intelligence. Bad behaviour is not prerorgative of castes - I can send you to a few private limited companies in India where bad behaviour is a way of life and they are all forward castes. If the person has just commented about loudness of Mahendra Singh it would have been fair remark but to include caste shows that we have to grow up as human being. With the advent of liberlisation and ample job oppourtunities created in private sector and millions of oppourtunities of self emplyoment arising we would perhaps see an emergence of a more cohesive and unified Hindu society than what we have seen in the past millennium where such remarks would never even thought about. Only a strong Hindu society can make India stronger.
Now during our duplicate rounds we had our good deals and awakward moments but none of the deal were as bizarre as this.
Mahendra Singh opened 1 Spade and I responded 2 Diamonds intending to make a delayed raise. When my partner jumped to 4 Hearts which showed at least 5-5 but more likely 6-5 pattern I took plunge to six spade.
This beautiful six Spade contract makes because of Club Ace is correct and why it is beautiful because Mahendra Singh had only 8 HCP and a 661- pattern.
Now it si not easy to bid this hand untill unless someone opens 1 Spade with East cards and is mad enough to jump to four hearts on a two Diamond response because normally you would like to not bid any further because of wasted values in Heart suit.
So what would you call this -good bidding or good card sense.
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