A day in the life of . . . Nevena’s Top Tip
Aways have a plan
Nevena Senior as declarer, but be prepared
to change it, if things are
different from what you would
Nevena Senior is the holder of a total of ten medals in European and World Champion- normally expect.
ships, playing for Bulgaria, where she was born, Great Britain and England. She considers Ideally, you should try to combine all
her highest achievements to be winning the European Ladies Pairs in 1987 in Brighton possibilities at the start of the play, but
for Bulgaria (when she had only been playing bridge for four years) and the gold medal it is sometimes difficult to do so. How-
ever, you should use all the new infor-
for England in the Women’s Teams at the World Mind Sports Games in Beijing in 2008. mation about the opposition's hands
that comes along in the course of the
play and adjust the plan accordingly.
Look at this deal, for example:
I LEAD a kind of ‘double life’, so I don’t our neighbours is from the Ukraine, and
have a typical day – I have two! my mother has frequent chats with her – ´ J965
I live in Nottingham, but from Monday in Russian! Having mother with us is ™ AKJ6
to Wednesday I work in London, playing good, especially if both Brian and I are t A8
and coaching at the Andrew Robson away playing bridge: she gets on well with ® Q72
Bridge Club. This entails getting up at the children and they all look after each W
8.45am on Mondays in order to catch the other. Kiril, who was born in Bulgaria S
London train at 10.30. I when I lived (and was ´ AKQ83
just drink a quick coffee married to my first hus- ™ 752
before leaving, but treat band) there, is perfectly t Q6
myself to a sandwich bilingual; Katya, born in
once in London. I reach England, speaks Bulga- You are in 6´ and West leads a club.
the club in time to play rian with an English To start with, your plan should be to
in the 1pm session, after accent, but has no prob- draw trumps, cash the ace and king of
which I go over the hands lems in either language. hearts, cross to hand and play a heart
with my partner. Brian is the only person towards the jack. That gives you the
I have a two-hour in the household who contract when West holds ™Q, or hearts
are 3-3 or East has ™Q-x or ™Q.
break before the evening does not speak Bulga-
However, when you draw the trumps,
session starts at 7pm, so rian, but by now he East turns out to have only one. As a
I might have a sushi as understands enough to discovery play, you play two more
an early dinner. The make it impossible for rounds of clubs, and East shows out on
evening is a replica of any of the others to the third round. At that point your
the afternoon – playing criticise him without original plan stops making sense. Cash-
and coaching him being aware of it! ing the ace and king of hearts was a
precaution in case East held ™Q-x. But if
afterwards – so my working day usually When I’m at home, I forget about bridge
this was the case, West would have had
finishes around 10 or 11 in the evening. I and try to sleep late to catch up, even if a 3-4-1-5 shape and might well have
am lucky in being able to spend the night Katya tends to wake me up at 6am for a led his singleton (and East, with eight
at a friend’s house, but by the time we’ve cuddle, or because she has suddenly diamonds, would have bid).
finished chatting bedtime is very late – remembered that she ‘needs’ something It's much more attractive in this posi-
still, travelling to the club the next day for school. Kiril now works, so he leaves tion to cash one top heart, then play
takes less time than from Nottingham! early, and by the time I’m up both kids ace and another diamond, hoping that
the tK is with East, and endplay him.
I go back on Thursday and usually spend have left and I can have a leisurely morning
the weekend at home although once or checking e-mails and catching up with the
twice a month I may play in a congress – I news. I cook both lunch and dinner, though ask Katya, was to Disneyland when she
only play in the big ones and the major lunch is generally just soup with Brian and was 4 – it was a memorable experience!
knock-out events, or I would not have mother, and in the afternoon I do the Despite being portrayed in Wife Swap
enough time with my family. shopping and might meet Katya after (which I wish to forget about) as not being
I live with my husband, Brian, our school for a ‘girlie’ shopping expedition. close to each other, we are a close-knit
daughter Katya (13) and my son Kiril Now she’s growing up, Katya needs me family, and in the evening, after our meal,
(24). My mother, who is 84, lives with us less and does more things with her father. we enjoy our favourite TV programmes
most of the year, with occasional trips Brian plays tennis with her and they go to together. We had a very long phase of being
back to Bulgaria. She does not speak the cinema together once a week. Since House fans, but have now moved on to
English (though she can read it and she Bulgaria joined the EU, going there is Boston Legal, and are quite addicted to it.
understands quite a lot) but this does not easier and we all go at least once a year. Just as well I can now catch up on missed
prevent her from making friends. One of Our best trip, however, especially if you episodes on the internet . . . r
www.ebu.co.uk August 2010 English Bridge 53