Page 0035


June 2015 English Bridge


I WAS moved to read (April 2015

issue) of Laurie Champniss's

donation of the South Bucks

Bridge Club to EBED; what a

great thing!

Also, thanks for the picture of

Laurie from 1973. Laurie was

kind enough to partner and

mentor me for a while in the

early '90s, when I was fresh from

Improvers Lessons. The great

man was in the habit, when I

made my usual crass bid, of

despairingly beating his forehead

with his non-playing hand. I had

thought that I was solely res ponsible

for his receding hair line,

so I am mighty relieved to

see that, like many other cerebral

men, his hair was on the wane

well before we met.

John Partridge,

Catalina, Australia

Laurie Champniss notes: 'John

Partridge was an interesting

player who was very prone to

psychic bids. I hope the Aussies

have cured him of this mis chievous



PUTTING down my completed

copy of English Bridge, I turned

today to Margot Asquith's War

Diary, recently published by

Oxford University Press.

On August 18, 1915, the prime

minister's wife recorded a game

of 'bridge', presumably auction,

between a remarkable set of


Margot played with Alice

Keppel, the most durable mis tress

of King Edward VII, who

had been dead five years. Their

opponents were Winston

Churchill, still in the Cabinet but

widely blamed for the failing

Dardanelles offensive, and the

Chancellor of Exchequer,

Reginald McKenna.

Smirking that her opponents

'don't like each other at all,'

Margot wrote: 'I won £10 from

Winston, which I didn't want to

do. He is a hopeless player and a

gambler, but we only played 1d


I would be impressed if any

readers can tell English Bridge

about a more noteworthy quartet

to sit down to bridge.

Alex Lewis,

Lemsford, Hertfordshire


IN the April issue Liz Dale was

explaining that in Minibridge

each player 'announces' their

HCP and the total must come to

40. The partnership with the

highest total becomes the

declaring side and the player

with the most points is declarer.

Sounds simple enough for

children but when you teach it to

adults, there can be a problem:

their mental arithmetic and

memory skills aren't what they

used to be, and they get quite

embarrassed having to ask for

constant recaps.

I solved this problem with my

'crosspad'. It's a small pad in

which every page has a St

Andrews Cross and each player

writes down their points in turn

starting with the dealer (see

picture). They then check if the

numbers add to 40 and if not

there is a recount, usually

accompanied by much laughter!

Once the 40 points are all

accounted for, it's plain sailing.

Ian Dalziel, Troon


WITH reference to David Gold's

April article (pass or bid with

fewer than 6 points), my partner

and I have established a simple

arith metical rule to establish a

dis tribution count to add on to

our HCP when confronted with

this type of situation. We add

the length of our two longest

suits, subtract the length of our

shortest suit, and then subtract

another 5 points. If, when this

distribution is added to our HCP,

we achieve 6 or more points,

then we definitely respond at the

one level if RHO has passed.

Nine times out of ten we are not

embarrassed! As for David's two

sample hands, we would defi nitely

respond 1´ on the first,

but pass on the second.

I have written up the

justification for this method at

Gavin, Surrey r



Send your letters to the editor,

Elena Jeronimidis, 23 Erleigh Road, Reading RG1 5LR, or e-mail

(please include your postal address)

The editor reserves the right to condense letters. Publication does not mean the

EBU agrees with the views expressed or that the comments are factually correct.


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