Matamata delivers on a foggy sort of day

The 4th WAP at Matamata got underway eventually after our usual seating, seeding and reseating the punters (sorry about that Mike and Ella!).

The room of 15 settled down into two 24 board Howell movements of 8 and 7 for the first session which saw the A point winners for Ross Stewart and Elaine Rayner of Hamilton and Christine and Jenna Gibbons in the other section.

A switch over to a Web after lunch saw us tackle 26 boards which turned into an exciting set for the North Souths who if they were bidding games, slams and even a grand was bid by 4 pairs in the room.

After a good morning and not too many problems in the afternoon - the overall winners again were Christine and Jenna Gibbons … they would be leading the competition if they were eligible (Christine need to get membership at a Waikato club to enable this!)

Jenna and ChristineJenna and Christine

In second place with a huge session score of 67% were work colleagues Dan Lulu and Karen Harris of Hamilton (which was rounded up to 70% once the weightings were applied. Dan is a recent reformed bridge player after a few years hiatus.

Dan and KarenDan and Karen

Lucie Armstrong and Richard Fletcher had done enough in the morning to secure third despite a less than stellar afternoon!

In the non-open section - the best of the pairs was Arthur and Beth Mann who were a very credible 8th place.

Arthur and Beth MannArthur and Beth Mann

Special mention to the other A point winners in the afternoon = Ella Grey and Michael Neels and Irenee Stewart and Beth Kingsley who tied in their section along with Dan and Karen,

As we move onto looking at the overall rankings … we must apologise to Herman Yuan and Yuzhong Chen who were announced as leading the pack on Sunday … they are In fact coming 2nd as we didn't set the parameters correctly … Kathy and Ken Yule from Matamata still claim that spot … for the time being as we head into WAP 5 at Morrinsville on the 7th July.

The other coveted spot of top non-open pair is held by Michelle Liddle and Judith Howard who were relieved to hear they could drop a score in the event!


We had a convivial day of bridge in Thames who were hosting their first WAP event ever! A solid roomful of 13 tables was just about perfect number and it transpired that we played two sessions of 26 boards straight around the room.

Thames upped the hospitality ante which was also well supported by the locals who produced 7 pairs who competed on the day.

Herman and YuzhongHerman and Yuzhong

The winners overall were Herman Yuan and Yuzhong Cheng from Cambridge/Waikato who had a very impressive morning session of 63% followed by an equally impressive afternoon session of 63% to give them an average of ….63%!

Kathy and KenKathy and Ken

In second place was Matamata's Kathy and Ken Yule who propelled themselves to the top of the leader board after three events (with Cynthia and Ian Clayton in a close second)

Mary and OliveMary and Olive

While the perennials Olive Davis and Mary Ronke seemed to place in the top few places at each event and were third in Thames.

Judith and MichelleJudith and Michelle

Judith Howard and Michelle Liddle from Matamata were the best non-open and also lead this section of the field after three sessions.

We thought we had a jump on the management of Sunday's WAP by using pre-entry to ensure we didn't get too packed at Te Aroha and we could pre determine the movement we were going to play. However a no-show by one pair meant a late change in plans but on the plus side we ended up with 18 full tables and were able to play two section 9 table mitchells so we got a fair bit of bridge for our money and also meant a maximum of 8 session A points were on offer!

Top of the room after two good sessions (and two session wins) were Kathy and Ken Yule.

Kathy and KenKathy and Ken

Second with a strong afternoon session were Thames pair Jena Robinson and Alex Barshai

Jena and AlexJena and Alex

While Jena Gibbons and mum Christine Gibbons were third on the day.

Jena and ChristineJena and Christine

Top non-open were also from Thames: Wendy Morris and Estelle Cashmore who came in at 11th place overall and won their morning session earning Wendy with her first full A point!

Wendy and EstelleWendy and Estelle

Other session winners with Lesley Quilty and Sonia Crawford and Ian and Cynthia Clayton in the morning and Phil Thompson and Ian Ross, Mereana Cullen and Rodney Harris in the afternoon.

After two events, the Claytons hold onto their lead with Sonia Crawford and Leslie Quilty in second place ... once you take out the ineligible pairs... although we don't start to get a good handle on the ladder until at least the third or fourth event due to dropped scores.

Be good to see all in Thames for their first time hosting the WAP. Also a reminder to register on the tournament website of the NZ Bridge website. This is the last event WAP event that requires pre-entry.

We had a great result at Cambridge - well attended (19 tables), well catered by the Cambridge members and some interesting boards. The overall winners of the event Cynthia and Ian Clayton had two solid sessions and take out the first heat from Jenna and Christine Gibbons.

Board 9: E/W vulnerable, North dealer.


Cynthia explains her play ... An interesting board from Session 2 today is Board 9. We got a fairly average result on it. At north, I opened 1S (too good in my opinion for 4S opener), my partner bid 1NT, west bid 2D and I bid 4S, which is where it played, along with the rest of the room. Diamond lead to my bare king. I then cashed AS hoping to drop bare king. (I could see two bare kings, why not a third one) and then played KC and overtook it with the ace in the faint hope that west only had a 6-card suit and I could pitch a losing heart on the AD. Clearly it failed. A line of play that had crossed my mind at trick one and one player must have done it, is win KD, cash KC, play a low spade towards the jack. If east doesn't rise with the king, you've now got two pitches in dummy and if east ruffs the AD, they wont make their king of trumps - allowing N to make 5S. Obviously, if east rises with the king and switches to a heart, the contract can't make.

I've had to go with some file photos while I await my photographer's email!!

Winners at Cambridge WAP: Cynthia and Ian Clayton from HamiltonWinners at Cambridge WAP: Cynthia and Ian Clayton from Hamilton

Jenna and Christine: Jenna and Christine GibbonsJenna and Christine: Jenna and Christine Gibbons

Clare and Kevin: Kevin Whyte and Clare ColesClare and Kevin: Kevin Whyte and Clare Coles

Top non-open pair were Matamata's Michelle Liddle and Judith Howard who had a great first session and came in 13th place with an average of 53.5%

Also special mentions for Hattie Curtis and Alan Mace who had a tremendous first session and earned an A point (and 4th overall).