The Tenterfield Contract Bridge Club’s annual congress is on at the Tenterfield Golf Club this weekend, and local players are well-positioned to make an impact if current form is anything to go by.
On Monday afternoon club president Rhonda Wienan took great pleasure in announcing that husband-and-wife pair Graham and Carole Lihou had not only won the club component of the 2018 State Wide Pairs Championship, but gone on to rank 30th out of the 461 pairs that competed.
The couple have been playing contract bridge for two decades, with Carole first taking the plunge and then Graham catching up. He said he used to be very competitive to start with, but has learned over the years that ‘it’s just a game and everyone makes mistakes’, so domestics are kept to a minimum, and what happens at the table stays at the table.
That’s not to say that the Stanthorpe couple don’t love a challenge, and were pleased with their top 10 per cent ranking in the state comp where everyone plays the same cards. Graham said they always farmed together and now bridge is another activity they can do together, and they enjoy it.
The Lihous may have decades of experience on the table, but the results of newcomers Jan Evans and Robyn Bell in the same statewide competition to rank 350 out of 461 experienced players is not to be sneezed at.
Jan and Robyn have only been playing this year, demonstrating that new players can be right in the action given a little dedication and enthusiasm.
There will be 16-18 local players among the 72 vying for honours at the 19th annual congress this weekend, which also draws participants from Ballina, Armidale, Warwick, Stanthorpe, Lismore, Goondiwindi, Toowoomba, Yamba and Brunswick Heads.
The club’s Val Davidson said the congress provides an economic boost to the town, with most participants arriving Friday to stay the weekend, and shopping a popular activity among a lot of the visitors.
The flower arrangements at the congress are always an appreciated feature, and this year Frances King, Jan Frith and helpers will be ensuring the display is up to to scratch.
Play will be underway all day Saturday continuing Sunday morning, with the winners announced after lunch.
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