Bridge in Greenwich: Critical time for the game as players return after COVID-19

A bridge class at the Greenwich YWCA on October 27, 2017.

A bridge class at the Greenwich YWCA on October 27, 2017.

File / Johnathon Henninger / Hearst Connecticut Media

With some local duplicate bridge clubs preparing to play face-to-face games soon, it’s a critical time for the American Contract Bridge League, which governs club and tournament play in North America.

It’s not clear how many players will be willing to return to in-person competition. Many who played in sanctioned duplicate games on their computers over the past 15 months may have found it more convenient and less expensive to take part from the comfort of their own homes.

The next few months will be critical in determining the future of organized bridge, and the ACBL and many of the game’s top players are waiting to see how it plays out.

The ACBL has informed its franchised duplicate clubs that they can resume bridge activities, and it is planning to schedule sectional and regional tournaments in the fall. In the area, two local clubs plan to begin face-to-face duplicates soon.

The 7NT Club, in the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Stamford, began play this past week. And in White Plains, N.Y., the Hartes Club will begin to offer two games daily, at 9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., weekdays starting July 5. The Hartes Club is located in the St. Gregory Armenian Church.

Today’s quiz: Here is another in the current series of quizzes on basic bridge probabilities. In the following problem, you are given your own and the dummy’s holding in two different suits, and are to determine the best percentage play in the specified circumstances.


S K54 S 632

C 8654 C 9732

Percentagewise, which of these two suits has a greater chance of yielding a trick? You have at least one entry to dummy.

Answer: In actual practice, it is quite possible that you would make a trick with the king of spades more often than making one in clubs, since on many deals you would not have the time to set up and cash a club trick (unless the opponents help by taking their top clubs, which is not all that unlikely). But that was not the question. Percentagewise, you have only a 50 percent chance of making a trick with the spade king on your own, while the club suit will furnish a trick whenever the outstanding clubs are divided 3-2 — a 68 percent possibility.