Monaco training

Written by Fulvio Fantoni on Thursday, 17 April 2014 12:42. Posted in Non categorizzato

Hi all :)
while Monte-Carlo slowly gets ready for Spring (but the air is still pretty cold), these days are marked by our trainings with Krzysztof Martens, the coach of Monaco team.

Training MartensThe topic to be deepened is bidding in competition.
So we test deals taken from the Championships and we evaluate new bidding conventions; then Francesca adds them to our system.

Let's do an example.

You hold: 0picche 2   0cuori -   0quadri AKJ983   0fiori KQJ986
And your partner holds: 0picche Axx   0cuori Jxxxx   0quadri Qxxx   0fiori A

After an hypothetical 20picche opening from the opponent, how would you bid the hand with your system?

Here is our convention:

2014 04 13 m8

40picche = two suits (0fiori/0quadri), very strong hand, at least 6/5. 4NT would describe the same two suited hand but weaker.
4SA = positive hand
50cuori = 0cuori Void
50picche = Cue Bid in 0picche
60fiori = odd number of Key Cards (of,  0picche0quadriAK 0fioriAK. Hearts Key Cards are not counted because the Void has been described)
70quadri = knowing that there are 0quadriAK and 0fioriK the Great Slam can be called considering that 40picche shows a strong hand and thus a good Clubs suit where we can discard our Spades losers if he has 2 cards without the King.

After the training, we reach the Tennis Club to see the Tennis Masters Tournament matches with the friends that reached us in these days. The day of the final is near and all the matches are extremely spectacular. We keep rooting for Rafael Nadal and we hope for two spectacular semi-finals: Nadal - Wawrinka and Federer - Djokovic!
In the meanwhile, tomorrow the quarter finals are, in the upper part of the bracket:
Nadal - Ferrer
Wawrinka - Raonic

In the lower part:
Tsonga - Federer
and surprisingly the Spanish Garcia Lopez (who defeated Berdych, the number 5th of the world ranking) versus Djokovic.

See you soon



Monte-Carlo Masters

Written by Fulvio Fantoni on Sunday, 13 April 2014 15:01. Posted in Non categorizzato

ace tennisHi all :)
After the Vanderbilt, our next tournament will be Italian Open Teams Championships. They will be held in Salsomaggiore in about ten days.

Waiting for this appointment, Iolanda, Claudio and I are preparing to enjoy one of the most spectacular weeks of the year in Monte-Carlo: Monte-Carlo Tennis Masters Tournament!!

Specifically dressed (peaked cap), from the seats of the bleachers our gaze accompanies the ball at the right and at the left of the net.

Our unusual role of spectators could nearly let us forget for some hours about bridge...

...forgetting for some ours about bridge? Is this possible?

In the middle of the match, Claudio turns toward me and says: "I wonder how many tennis players won the Grand Slam up to now."

He is clearly referring to the prestigious recognition for the tennis players who conquer within a year the gold medal in the four most important competitions: Australian Open, France open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open. But it's too late to specify this: our mind is alreay back to that Grand Slam of Vanderbilt's tables...

2014 04 13 m1

What would you like to play in this board? The contract that makes, the contract that can make (on a finesse) or the contract that would not make? Well, the "contract that would not make" pushed Monaco out of the highest step of the podium.

Closed room:

2014 04 13 m6

Open room:

2014 04 13 m7

Levin-Weinstein's "ace" in the Closed room and our cautious dribble in the Open room moved 17 IMPs toward the wrong side of the field...
As good spectators we now hope that our favourite one, Rafa, will be luckier than us this week!

luca rafaMy son Luca, Claudio, Rafael Nadal and me




Back from Dallas

Written by Fulvio Fantoni on Thursday, 03 April 2014 08:39. Posted in Non categorizzato


Hi all :)
After two intense bridge weeks we are back from America.
The Vanderbilt Final, our last challenge, was very tough. Pierre Zimmermann and Franck Multon had to leave because of a problem in Pierre's family, so we were only 4 to defend our team and we had to play all the boards. They say "slow and steady win the race", but this was not the case for us: at the end, we missed the match for two only IMPs! Congratulations to Nick Nickell, Ralph Katz, Bobby Levin, Jeff Meckstroth, Eric Rodwell and Steve Weinstein for winning this edition! See you in Las Vegas ;)

While we were working hard on American cards, the free bridge course for Under 35 organized by Lazio Bridge Committee started and I knew it is meeting great success, with no less than 100 young participants. So congratulations also to Lazio Bridge Committee team, captained by Patrizia Pelino, for their commitment in the development of bridge and their victory with this initiative!

See you soon for some updates and some boards from the Vanderbilt.



In Dallas for Spring National

Written by Fulvio Fantoni on Sunday, 23 March 2014 20:36. Posted in Non categorizzato


Hi all!
We are in Dallas, Texas, for the Spring National.

The first event I played this year was Platinum Pairs, a pairs tournament reserved to Platinum Life Masters. I usually don't play Pairs tournaments in USA, but this time I wanted to have the opportunity to play a few hands with my friend Jay Barron. Jay is from Tulsa, Oklahoma, and even if he has been playing bridge for only six years he is already increadibly good. Besides, he is very fond of our bidding system. We could reach the final and we placed 16th. Well done Jay! :)

The most important teams competition, the Vanderbilt, started. In this event our team is the number one seed and an hard bracket is waiting for us...

See you soon for some updates :)




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