Interview with Udi Friedlander; Member of the Israel National team by Sylvie Pelosoff for CsbNews.org.
Meet Udi Friedlander…
Udi you are one of the top Israeli players with a very promising future, how and when did you start playing Bridge?
UDI–17 years ago I arrived at the base where I did my army reserve duty in an elite unite in the Golan heights, I saw 4 very talented men playing a game of cards and it drew my attention, they said its bridge…. After a few minutes one of the men had to leave and I was asked to take his place. It’s a miracle they did not kick me out immediately !!! they gave me a bridge book by an Israeli author, I read it, and I thought I became a World Class Player .
I didn’t meet them again, but as I returned home to Haifa, and I found by chance a money bridge club. They needed 1 player at a table and I joined, as you might well imagine I lost all my money, and…. They invited me cordially again, I kept coming back and losing, until I got the idea and started winning, that’s when they lost interest in me, and I was hooked.
And tournaments? When did you start?
UDI–In the year 2000 but I did not have a serious steady partner.
Did you make it to a serious national or international championship?
UDI–Yes, in 2011 I won the Feher Cup, a prestigious pairs event in Israel.
Then I met Ram Sofer and we played many events together, we classified 2nd4 consecutive times in the Israel Championships .I was quite young, but not a Junior any longer : 27 years old
It took me a long time to decide I want to become a pro, once I made the decision I looked for a steady partner. It was at that time I was invited by VITO well known to BBO players , from Bulgaria, to the Balkan Championship – My first time in an International Event- with Ilan Herbst, and the Yadlin brothers.
I am proud to say we won 1st prize !!!
A year later I met my current partner Inon Liran, we were invited to the Stara Zagora Festival with Dror Padon, Lotan Fisher and Ron Shwartz – A killer team–
We also classified first in the team event .
That same year the team then went on to [ilink url=»http://csbnews.org/italy-torneo-internazionale-a-squadre-citta-di-milano/?lang=en»]Milano to play the famous team tournament[/ilink] , where the Lavazza team won, and we were 5th.
In 2012 we were invited again to the [ilink url=»http://4bbc.neo-bridge.org/»]Stara Zagora Festival[/ilink] and….. We won AGAIN !!!
In the spring of 2012 with Inon Liran as my partner and Pachtman-Ginossar we were selected to represent Israel in the [ilink url=»http://csbnews.org/world-mind-sports-games-2012/?lang=en»]Olympic Mind Games in Lille.[/ilink]
Are you married?
UDI–Nooooo, I am single with a long line of lady players waiting to catch me—Hahaha 😆
Time for name dropping, who have you met?
UDI__Ohh so many : Bocchi, Madala, Versace, Martens, Sergei Orlov, Zia Mahmood, Kokish, Garozzo, Fantoni, Nunes….and many others
Do you coach or teach?
UDI–Schools in special programs and on BBO
Where would you like to play next?
UDI–In February I will be going to Moscow to play the [ilink url=»http://csbnews.org/2013-slava-cup/?lang=en»]Slava Cup[/ilink] . In the spring the trials for the Israel open team with Inon. I plan to play in China the Rosenblum Cup event
So I can guess who is your favorite partner..?
UDI–Obviously Inon Liran
What do u like best about your Partner?
UDI–He is able to overcome a bad start, and his high bidding ability and understanding with modern bids.
How would you define yourself as a player?
UDI–I am able to see the total picture of cards at the table, then deeply analyze the situation and finally act accordingly.
Where do you dream of playing?
UDI–I would like to play the USA Nationals with a sponsor, but I am not there yet.
Are you aggressive?
UDI–Not on a regular basis, but when I see an opportunity …. I pounce on it.
And your idol is?
UDI–Versace- Lauria during their prime were really special. Today Madala is the hottest star and Helgemo very close
Do you have hobbies?
UDI–PIANO. I love to play classical music and to sing too. Tennis, not only to play but to watch too, I am a big fan of Nadal, and my latest is mountain biking. Of course last but not least — WOMEN — and Slavic women are my weakness. 😉
Sylvie Pelossof; Tel aviv, Israel