"Norberto Bocchi"

The Cavendish Invitational – How would we mark this tournament as an end of term school report?

Location: Monaco. Monte Carlo is less expensive than you might think, honestly. Travel, room, and board expenses are surprisingly reasonable, a fraction of the entry fee of this unique and important tournament. Nonetheless the auction is more than satisfactory, exciting, and well managed: Mark: 10.

Playing Venue: Sport d’Hiver (Place du Casino). We played at the exclusive Sport d’Hiver’s magnificent rooms. A very fashionable venue, located right in the heart of the city. Mark: 9.5

Organization: Allavena and Riccardi have done a superb job. Maybe the organizers did not inform the players quite as promptly about start times. To be honest, I am carping, they deserve a round of applause. Let me try to make a helpful suggestion; it might make more sense if the teams were played over two and half days and the pairs competition a little longer to iron out the luck that adds that certain piquancy to matchpoints: Mark: 8.5

Winners: Congratulations to Lotan Fisher and Ron Schwartz, the two Israeli juniors. What I find so astonishing is their stamina, they led from start to finish, maintaining a high standard throughout against all comers. They played excellent bridge and held their nerve under pressure: Mark: 9

Runners up: Quantin and Cronier, though not a regular partnership, who nevertheless played very well. The same can be said about my regular partner Agustin who played with a certain Zia Mahmood. They came in third, well done. Mark: 8.5

Losers. Despite the large prize money available, all the players displayed nothing but the highest integrity. Hopefully this will usher in a new and much needed level of professionalism into our game: Mark: 10.

 Note . It is a pity that not many players from the Americas took part. This had no impact on the standard of the bridge, all the same it would add to the interest of the event if some of the top pairs and teams from across the pond had participated.

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