Wednesday, 30 September 2015

More bumps in the road ~ Seniors Day 4

And it all started so well. Our first match was against Tunisia, who were in the bottom five. We steadily built up our score, with David Mossop bringing home a grand slam on the last board to take us to 71 IMPs to 4, and through the 20.00 VP barrier. (20.00 is known variously as a Millennium, a Sydney or a Mad Cow, that being the year of the disease).

We had hoped to do something similar to Chile, who were also in the bottom five, but in the event we needed a 2 IMP swing on the last board to give us the narrowest of victories by 43 IMPs to 42. We were still lying first, but the pack had closed up.

Austria were lying fourth and had lost their first two matches of the day. Unfortunately they decided to recover by whupping us by 41 to 2 in IMPs, leaving us with a miserly 2.03 VPs. They got three double-digit swings, all vulnerable, and that was that. We were above average for the day, but that isn't enough when you're near the top, and we had slipped to fifth place.

Nobody said it was going to be easy and we plan to bounce back tomorrow. I brought along a quote, just in case we had a bad match, and this is it:

Even if you fall on your face, you're still moving forward.Victor Kiam

Tomorrow we will play Norway (bridge playing membership: 8,900) who are one position above us in fourth. Then comes Ireland (1,900), who were seventh in the European Championships and came in as very late replacements when Sri Lanka (132) withdrew. I am sorry that BJ O’Brien and Michael MacDonagh were unable to make the trip to Chennai. Ireland are seventh at the moment. Last we have Sweden (23,200). Sweden were silver medallists in the European Championships last year, and are currently tenth. Tough matches all, but twice the reward if we can win them.

Paul Hackett told me an interesting fact about India: the reason the time difference is five and half hours dates back to the days of the British Raj. It meant that that when they turned their watches upside down, they got the time in England!  Of course, it's one hour out in Summer Time, whose centenary will be in May 2016. It doesn't work with a digital clock (I've just tried it), except perhaps once a day with a particular combination of 1s, 6s, 9s and 0s. Can any egghead reading this please let me know.

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