Newsletter - 18 February 2022

In this week’s newsletter...

  • Upcoming Sessions
  • Supervised Play
  • Master the Basics
  • Competitive Bidding & Play Lessons
  • Upcoming Events
  • 60th Gold Coast Congress
  • Hugh Hudson Pairs
  • Results
  • Bridge Tips by Joan Butts
  • Richard Hill's Winning Ways
  • Ian Morison Counting Winners & Losers
  • Lighter Moments


From the President

Please remember that under ACT Government COVID requirements, facemasks must worn on entering the Club, and should remain on whilst in the Club. Please remember to ensure that your face mask covers both your nose and mouth.

As members would be aware, good ventilation is important to reduce the risk of COVID transmission via aerosols.  The club’s air conditioning and heating system is serviced every four months, and a scheduled maintenance visit has occurred recently.  To minimise the COVID risks, the technician adjusted the settings so that the maximum amount of fresh air (rather than recirculated air) is now coming into the club.  He also advised that the unit’s air filtration system is working well.

If using fans, it is important that the fans are positioned so air doesn’t blow from one person to another.  Please keep this in mind.

Please enjoy your bridge and stay safe.




Calling Experienced Players

Our supervised program is up and running on Wednesday evenings and Friday mornings.   The sessions include a short lesson followed by a duplicate where participants can ask questions during the play.   We are seeking more volunteers to help support this program.  The role of the volunteer is to assist the teacher to respond to questions asked during the play.   Morag Lokan is coordinating the supervised program.   If you would like to help please get in touch with Morag.   


A Word on Governance

The Committee's deliberations at its January Committee Meeting are available online or in hard copy on the Governance Noticeboard near the Directors desk.


Sessions in the club and on RealBridge are outlined below. 

From 2 March Wednesday evening sessions will return as face-to-face - RealBridge sessions at that time will cease.  Friday morning face-to-face sessions will resume from 18 March 2022.

Please note that visitor fees on RealBridge will increase to $10 from 1 March 2022.

 NBThere may be possible changes from time to time but if any of the advertised sessions below change we will send another email advice. 

Upcoming Sessions

Our weekly sessions

  • Monday morning 10.00am at the club
  • Monday 10.15 am RealBridge
  • Monday 2.00 pm (24 boards) RealBridge
  • Monday 7.00 pm RealBridge
  • Monday 7.15pm RealBridge event
  • Tuesday afternoon 1.00pm at the club
  • Wednesday morning 10.00am at the club
  • Wednesday morning 10.15am RealBridge
  • Wednesday evening supervised at the club 7pm (18 boards following lesson) commencing 2 Feb
  • Wednesday evening 7.15pm RealBridge
  • Thursday morning 10.00am at the club - Butler and walk in duplicate
  • Thursday afternoon 2.00pm (24 boards) RealBridge
  • Friday morning supervised 10am at the club (18 boards following lesson) commencing 4 Feb
  • Friday afternoon 1.00pm at the club
  • Friday afternoon 1.15pm RealBridge
  • Saturday afternoon 1.15pm RealBridge

Watch the newsletters and website for advice on face-to-face sessions at the club, and RealBridge sessions as these are fluid, depending on COVID developments and demand.  At this stage it is intended that the Monday and Thursday afternoon RealBridge sessions will continue indefinitely.  

Member table money will be deducted from players CBCPay accounts. Visitors' fees will be paid for by their member-partner, or via prior arrangement by emailing the office.

Cost: face-to-face $10 members/ $13 visitors, concession $9.  RealBridge $8 members and $7 concession (including event) $10 visitors from 1 March 2022.

Links to sessions are on our RealBridge page.


Supervised Sessions happening Wednesday nights and Friday Mornings at the Club

If you know the basics and just want to refresh your bridge knowledge come along on Wednesday nights at 7pm or Friday Mornings at 10am for an 18 board supervised session.  Come individually and we will match you up or come with a partner if you have one. Learn from the pros and develop your confidence with bidding and play.  We are very grateful to Brian Thorp and Bob Cox who are assisting with these sessions and as indicated above if you are an experienced player and want to help others, please let Morag know.  Thanks also to Colin Beaton for regularly volunteering his time.  


Master the Basics

Master the Basic lessons are back on Zoom Thursday's at 9.00am sharp!   These are half hour lessons worth a zillion to your knowledge, bidding and cardplay! The topic list is here. Next week's topic is 1NT doubled - now what? If you want to register, the cost is $6 for members and $8 for nonmembers. Please email if you want to be added to the notification list and get on Zoom.  


Competitive Bidding and Play

If you are new to duplicate bridge and find competitive bidding a challenge this 4 week course is a must.  Over 4 weeks we will cover doubles, overcalls, leads and signals.    These sessions started on Tuesday February 15 and finish on Tuesday March 8.   The classes run from 10am to 12 noon on Tuesdays. We start with a lesson, discuss and may bid or play practice hands.

This course will be run face-to-face in the club rooms.  Cost is $15 per lesson . EFT to BSB 032730  Acct 355176.  In the Reference field please put "Compbidplay" and ABF number please

Feedback on week 1 Doubles was sought.  Susie Ryrie said the course was "really, really good.  It filled a knowledge gap.  We did some practice bidding and discussed the range and types of doubles and got a handout on the 15 types of doubles. I thoroughly enjoyed it and look forward to next week's lesson on overcalls."  Thanks for the feedback Susie!

Just turn up and we can charge your CBC Pay.  


 Upcoming Events

Hugh Hudson Pairs -  Mondays 7.15pm

The Hugh Hudson Pairs Club Championships is a Butler Imps scored event to be held over 3 weeks on  Monday evenings commencing 28 February via RealBridge.

 The competitive group will return to face-to-face at the clubrooms from Tuesday 22 March (Open Trials Qualifying).


Gold Coast Congress

Good luck to Canberra players playing in the 60th Annual Gold Coast Congress from 18 to 26 February.  A full program and entry form is here. Please as ever feed back any significant placings.


Fourth Suit Forcing with Joan Butts

After three (different) suits have been bid by our side, responder usually has enough information to decide the final contract. 
But sometimes they need more information.  When there are enough points for at least game, a forcing bid to keep the auction going and to ascertain more information is required.

Answer: bid the fourth suit!  It's called Fourth Suit Forcing 1♦️ p 1♥️ p 2♣️ p 2♠️ - and is an artificial game forcing tool designed to make responder’s bidding easier, when  

The responder doesn’t know which game to play
The responder is strong and wants to make a slam try

HOW (to use fourth suit)

  • After hearing fourth suit forcing, opener will describe their hand further 
  • Support responder’s suit with three cards
  • Bid  no trumps with a stopper in the fourth suit 
  • Rebid one of their own suits with extra length


CBC February Imp Pairs

Top 10 pairs - Final

  1. Tony Marker & Bill Tutty
  2. Neil Ewart & Christophe Quail
  3. Rob Hurst & Des Manderson
  4. Julia Hoffman & Jodi Tutty
  5. Niek Van Vucht & Bruce Crossman

Consolation Plate - 2nd half of 11 tables

  1. David Wawn & David Hoffman
  2. Peter Grant & Anthony Marinos
  3. Adam Robinson & Ian Robinson
  4. George Zuber & John Kelly
  5. Gill Tidey & Tamara Cutcliffe

New Zealand Congress

The team comprising Jodi Tutty, Neil Ewart, David Beauchamp, Kim Morrison, Avinash Kanetkar & Bruce Neil came in 4th place in the Open Teams.  

Andrew Spooner & George Kozakos came 11th out of 122 in the Open Swiss Pairs.  



Four decades of bridge - Richard's Rules


Rule 1. To improve at bridge it is helpful to restrict yourself to one or two regular partners. Having a dozen regular partners instead causes confusion, as you forget which methods you use with whom.

Rule 2. Notwithstanding Rule 1 having fun with any number of casual partners is recommended. You necessarily cannot improve your partnership bidding or partnership defence with a one-off pard, but of course you have the opportunity to improve your own declarer play.

Rule 3. A classic book on declarer play and defence is "Card Play Technique" by Victor Mollo and Nico Gardner (available from the CBC library). It is cunningly structured with chapters of gradually increasing difficulty, with odd-numbered chapters discussing declarer play, and even-numbered chapters discussing the corresponding defence. At the end of every chapter is a helpful refresher quiz.

Rule 4. Somewhat more advanced is "The Secrets of Winning Bridge" by Jeff Rubens. I found particularly interesting his chapter on hand evaluation; for example Rubens taught me that for declarer the king of trumps and an outside ace is more valuable than the ace of trumps and an outside king (this is because declarer's trump honours are guaranteed values, but an outside king might be decapitated by an opponent's ace).

To be continued...


Count Losers, Winners or Both? with Ian Morison

Most nascent bridge players count points religiously and inflexibly.  But it is important to count losers as well so you get a true picture of the strength of your hand.

Here is an interesting hand from earlier this week. Dealer West, EW Vul:






A74                                                             98

Q83                                                               A109542

AQJ7                                                            432

1053                                                              96







  1. West opens 1D.
  1. What does North then do?

North has 15HCP, but in reality it is a much stronger hand than mere point count shows. The strength is shown by counting losers - there are only 3 (SA, HA and CA).

With normal distribution of the missing 25 points and the missing cards amongst the other hands, South would be expected have one missing ace and a few spades and clubs. Game is easy. (But as West has opened showing 11+ points, the odds in favour of 1 Ace with South are a bit less, but game is still very likely.)

Counting his losers, North should be thinking: ‘I must end up in game here’. Given North has 7 Clubs, 5C looks safer, but if South has some Spades, then 4S is better as 1 less trick is needed and it scores better. So I would not jump to game straight away.

North also notes his side is not vulnerable, the other side are.

All this means North must bid strongly.

Does North Double to show an opening hand, or just overcall 2C? [By chance, if North does Double, and the hand is then passed out, NS will score very well given South’s Diamond holding. But I suspect East will bid 2H over the double with a 6 card suit, or West will Redouble asking East to bid].

I prefer a simple 2C to see what’s going on. Doubling creates the difficulty of showing both Clubs and Spades if partner responds 2H (which often occurs when the doubler has a shortage).

  1. What does East do over 2C by North? EW are vulnerable, but I would still bid 2H – it is a reasonable 6 card suit, with 3 card Diamond support.
  1. South then faces a tough choice. He has 8 points, but not much to say. I would not dare say 2NT with a misfit hand. I would Pass.
  1. West then may raise 2H to 3H, or Pass. It is touch and go whether bidding 3H is correct, but after South’s Pass it is probably ok.
  1. North should then bid 3S (irrespective of whether West passes or bids 3H) and South should then raise to 4S as North has bid a new suit at the 3 level, showing a strong 2 suiter. South has 8 points, a singleton, and 3 card spade support.

4S should be an easy contract to make, but care is needed so the Spade suit is not shortened by too much ruffing. I suspect a small diamond would be led. After ruffing that, I would play a Club to the CA in Dummy to unblock the Clubs, then lead S10. West will probably duck, thinking a finesse of SQ or SJ is possible, and then declarer just draws all Trumps and runs the Clubs, making 11 Tricks (at some stage, HK will be lost).


Ian Morison - Bridge lover

014 Feb 2022 (I recently asked why will 22 Feb be exciting for me – it is a palindromic date: 22/02/2022. They are rare.)


 Lighter Moments

 Fame, as they say, is fickle. It may take years to reap it and, when you do, you may not have the time to enjoy the fruits of your labor. This was the case for Confucius, an ancient Chinese philosopher whose ideas still resonate today.

Here is one of Confucius's sayings: "It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop." In a few words, Confucius teaches us about patience, perseverance, discipline, and hard work. But if you probe further, you will see more layers. Confucius's philosophies, which are similar to humanist thought, have significantly influenced spiritual and social thought. His views bear insight and depth of wisdom, you can apply his teachings in every sphere of life. Confucian proverbs have the power to transform lives, but they are not for casual reading. When you read them once, you feel the power of his words; read twice, and you will appreciate his deep thought; read them over and over again, and you will be enlightened. Let these Confucian quotes guide you in life.

  1. "Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it."
  2. "They must often change who would be constant in happiness or wisdom."
  3. "What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others."
  4. "In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of."
  5. "It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop."
  6. "When anger rises, think of the consequences."
  7. "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals; adjust the action steps."
  8. "Faced with what is right, to leave it undone shows a lack of courage."
  9. "To be able under all circumstances to practice five things constitutes perfect virtue; these five things are gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness."
  10. "To see what is right, and not to do it, is want of courage or of principle."
  11. "Those that think they can, can, those that think they can't, can't.  Both are right!"  Thanks Susie for the inspiration.