Festival of bridge comes up trumps

A SMALL slice of luck and a much larger dose of skill has delivered a fun and successful Tasmanian Festival of Bridge in Launceston.

The four-day event was held at Country Club Tasmania at Prospect.

There were 220 competitors with some competing in multiple events.

Event organiser Catherine Elliott, of the Tasmanian Bridge Association, said the turnout was the largest at a Tasmanian competition, which was fantastic.

Melbourne-based national bridge tournament director Laurie Kelso said the game was played in pairs and all competitors started with the same computer-generated hand of cards, so skill was more important than luck.

``The skill factor is that you need to do better on the same cards that everyone has,'' he said.

``You can bid them better, play them better, defend them better.

``Because it is a partnership game, it is how well you can effectively (and legally) communicate with your partner.

``The idea is to describe each other's hands by the bidding you do.''

He said studies had shown that playing bridge helped thwart brain decline.

 Results:

Australian Swiss Pairs winners: M. Watts, M. Prescott; Roger Penny. Swiss Pairs: T. Brown and A. Kanetkar; Island Matchpoint Swiss Pairs: M. Watts, M. Prescott; Restricted Swiss Pairs: L. Libman, T. Libman.

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