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All comments by Christina Lund Madsen
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This is where I totally agree, yet disagree with Joris. I agree that playing bridge on tablets would limit the game to be much more about technique.

But when I try to explain the profoundness of bridge to outsiders, I ALWAYS say that it is not only about statistics and technically correct plays.

One of the beauties about bridge is exactly the psychological game and I think that is why so many top players here life Hampson, Meckstroth, Fredin, Boye, Tony, Tom, Vince, I could go on and on, would never support a solution as the proposed.

Most of best players in the world don't like playing online. Ask Geir Helgemo or even better your countryman and personal hero Sjoert Brink how they feel about this. If you want more I can give you Dennis Bilde and Fredrik Nyström and the list never ends…

If this proposal becomes reality, you would beat me 8 out of ten times. If I get to be your screen mate tomorrow I would put my money on the blonde ;-)
Sept. 18, 2015
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Yeah Jeff! A friend and I were waiting for you to wake up since we were sure you would be on “our” side :-)
Sept. 18, 2015
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Att.: James

This is not about me, however I am provoked by your assertion of my insecurity both as a person and as a bridge professional.

I believe you have never met me neither at the bridge table, nor in real life. Stress is my constant companion, I have so much adrenaline in my body that even those of my friends in favor of drugs tell me never to use any. I redouble more than anyone you ever played against, which illustrates my approach to life.

Yet it hurts me deeply if anybody thinks badly of me. If you think that self assure people will not be affected by accusations that they are cheating, my guess is that your knowledge of human psychology is not your strongest feature.
Sept. 18, 2015
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I could not agree more with Huub. The best moment for me at a tournament is when I pick up the cards on the very first board.

Playing electronically will hurt the game much more than the cheaters ever could.

Sept. 18, 2015
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James: To me injustice has no number.

And if you were to accuse me, I would lose much sleep. How would everyone else know you are wrong and believe me if I state my innocence?

My situation would be no different from our “third” pair.
Sept. 18, 2015
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I think the ones enhancing the whispering by claiming they “know” the third pair and suggesting people to write them to know the identity should spend a night outside in the cold rain.

I have heard the rumors too and did not (want to) believe them. I have talked to several people analyzing hours and hours of videos not finding ANY hint whatsoever of cheating from this pair.

Before Sabines post today I even talked to some of the analysts about the need to go public about this rumored third pair, who is for now (and hopefully forever) acquitted. None of us have the right to ruin the reputation and possibly lives of innocent people.

For me it is not worth catching three guilty pairs if one pair is unjustly convicted by the public opinion. I know I am probably alone with this point of view.

If we suddenly find ourselves suspecting and accusing anyone who makes controversial leads, bids or play, we also ruin a part of the beauty of bridge.

If people are suddenly scared to underlead an ace due to the fear of being suspected of cheating, the hunt for cheaters has failed.

I make strange leads, I make (very) controversial bids. People have called me crazy or lucky - and some more flattering things. Maybe now they will call me a cheater.

Sept. 17, 2015
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Oh, I just received a message from Geir Helgemo saying he will now step in as captain of the Danish women's team since the open team stole our captain because Geir and the guys withdrew.

Such a gentleman!
Sept. 16, 2015
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The Danish Bridge Federation is indeed sending the team listed above.

I would like to add two things:
Firstly that Monaco has been extremely cordial towards us in this matter by letting us know as soon as the decision was made from their part and by telling us to go win! We wish them the same in the transnationals.

Secondly some might miss Dennis and Morten Bilde from the line up; sadly they were not able to go with such short notice.

We would like to say thank you to our Scandinavian friends for the support in this matter. It is such a pleasure to feel both Sweden and Norway rooting for us to go.

See many of you very soon in Chennai!
Sept. 16, 2015
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I have said this before and I am not scared to repeat myself:
The day bridge is only played electronically is the day I quit.
Sept. 14, 2015
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Before anyone going after Helgemo I want to say that he and Tor are famous for being such pleasant opponents and on good terms with all opponents despite often beating them up heavily.

Geir is known for never wanting to talk about bridge and furthermore I remember witnessing (and joking with some other bystanders) the Monaco team comparing, since the Norwegian/French/Italian dialects often made it quite an accomplishment to score up.

And as Boye stated it wasn't until he played against FS he understood the cheating rumours. It is likely more difficult for the teammates than for the opponents to detect whether a pair is cheating.

I think that Geir and Tor are the kind of players who have a good time with all their opponents and just cannot imagine anybody to be cheating. I know more like them and they may be naive, yes, but I personally find it very charming to have a stronger belief in the good than the bad nature of human beings, bridge players included.
Sept. 14, 2015
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Sweden set an example for good sportsmanship by contacting Denmark before accepting the spot in the BB.

From a Danish perspective Sweden is next in line according to the rules, since Israel has simply withdrawn.

We have no desire to waste time speculating about the situation had Israel been disqualified, since this is not the case.

We have very tight bonds to Sweden and we will root as passionately and proudly for our neighbours in the Bermuda Bowl as we always do.

Heja Sverige!
Sept. 7, 2015
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I know that both Sweden and Denmark have a fantasy about Swanmark.

The problem is really that with such short notice it is highly likely that neither country will be able to send their A-team plus the expenses are not in the budget.

I cannot imagine the WBF would accept it but we like to dream about it…
Sept. 5, 2015
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Oh Tom (if I may call you that) I love when you get mad! Wrouw…
Sept. 2, 2015
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It's funny, I had this conversation about a matchmaking site yesterday with someone and in Chicago a guy was asking me and Ida Grönkvist from Sweden whether he could put us on ebay for the mixed swiss…

I am convinced it would make sense to have something like what Ben and his crew developed in the UK. I imagine it a bit like a dating site (which you might not believe I have absolutely no personal experience with) where you describe yourself and have a chance to communicate with someone you are interested in hiring/being hired by to see if there might be good chemistry before agreeing to anything.

Especially for me coming from Denmark I often hear people say “oh, I didn't know you were available” or comments like that cause in the beginning it is quite difficult for us coming from Europe since out of sight is usually out of mind.

As for advice to shirley, I would recommend you to go with something a bit long term in terms of a lot of practice on BBO if you have a strong preference to play your complete system, since it takes a larger effort to do well together than just play something ultra simple for one event.

Another advice would be to ask someone that you admire, like you tell Justin and Josh that you are fans of them - I would always start with the ones on top of my list and work my way down - and hopefully not have to go too low…:-)

And Geoff, I hear you in terms of not wanting to recommend someone you cannot stand up for, but with the danger of sounding a bit harsh; if its your site, your recommendations, its your choice whether you want to add pros (or wannabe pros. And I think it wouldn't hurt to set the bar high in that respect if it means that clients can really trust that they will get something worth their money.

Of course I realize it is a problem if you don't like rejecting people to their face but I have a feeling you would not be so reluctant to do that as many others including myself…

As for whether pros commending themselves is just hot air, I think in most cases you could just look at their results. Most who are not just pros by claim have some kind of notable title to back their reputation. I know for young players it is a challenge at first, but most young talents have a habit of rising at a speed unavoidable to notice, especially since they often sweep the junior medals.

I'm just waiting for someone to do it. Pros want it, clients want it. Who's in?
Aug. 30, 2015
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Personally I don't care about master points and I have never really looked into how the system works in the US. I have only heard a few things such as I won't be able to become life master (whatever that title means) because I don't have some colors you get in club games and I only play nationals where I get the color that you get in the main events.

I have been told that you need to play at least half the boards to get master points and I have noticed that there are many events with master point restrictions - in my opinion both sensible initiatives. So I don't quite understand why so many talk about how there should be “non-pro events”.

However - and this is for me of the utmost importance - the ACBL has made it so attractive and prestigious to fight for these masterpoints that they have attracted the best players in not just the US, but the entire world.

When my non-bridge friends ask me whether there are great money prizes in bridge, they don't believe my reply, because they don't understand why anyone will spend money to play without a chance to win money.

And although more and more events with great money prizes surface (Cavendish, Yeh Bros, the new VVcup) all the world's greatest stars and their clients continue to prefer the American Nationals.

In Denmark we fight to attract more people to our events, people are quick to complain if the prizes are too small (and yes, we also hand out master points), we have no professional environment thus very few international top players and hardly any remarkable international results as a nation.

But we do have the same discussion between the “elite” and the “others”. And I really struggle to understand why the US - as the most radiant example of how much good a professional environment does for bridge - seem to have adopted this discussion.

I know several Danish amateur players who this summer finally decided to go to the American Nationals because they have been dreaming of playing against and alongside the Steve Weinsteins of the bridge world.

Remember to appreciate what you have now rather than mourn the loss in the future.
July 27, 2015
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Hi Michael, I just saw your post. Declarer called the director after a very slow play of a singleton and the whole matter was followed by a heated debate.
I know, cause I was dummy.
It is fine if you need time to think on defense, but then play the card first an leave it front up while you think. That was our only request.

There are no more appeals in the EBL championships. A board of directors make a ruling based on some procedures (like asking some players what they would bid on a hand if that is the topic of the director call). That ruling stands, but there is a possibility to ask for a review, which, as I understand, is only procedural, which means that the ruling stands if it has been made following the correct procedure (at least that is what someone explained to me)

However the review (which was in fact asked for but did not change anything) did not have anything to do with the director call you describe above. It was on the board that followed.
July 7, 2015
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Adam, I just want to say that I saw you double Joel in 4M and find an amazing lead from the kx of clubs, the only lead to beat a cold contract that now fell apart due to all your actions. I thought that was a marvelous hand and one of the best I saw during the trials, though I confess to have been rooting for Fireman throughout.

I was very impressed and think you should be very proud of your performance.
May 26, 2015
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The day bridge Championships are played on computers is the day I quit.
May 19, 2015
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I like it, Geeske!

I underlead aces on opening leads more than I should make known publicly, but that is to make declarer misguess with a KJ-guess. It used to work for me all the time, however now my reputation is catching up on me…

I rarely get a chance to do as you do, since if I have a void, a long suit and my partner supported me, I am usually declarer doubled (or even redoubled) at any given level…
April 7, 2015
Christina Lund Madsen edited this comment April 7, 2015
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I like that simply the title of this contribution shows the opinion of its creator. Reading all of your comments it is clear that from your perspective the Rosumblum is by far the most important event of the World Bridge Games, yet there are seven other world titles to battle for during the championships.
I agree that the Rosenblum is definitely the most prestigious and probably the most entertaining to watch.
However the entire World Bridge Games schedule should not be adjusted simply to fit the Rosenblum. As long as seniors and womens events are run simultaneously the WBF has to find a solution that fits all categories.
Furthermore the mixed events are highly popular. There were only about 40 teams more in the Rosenblum than in the mixed teams. How can you then argue that this event should be shortened? I played in the mixed teams and got knocked out in the round of 16 by a team that had knocked out Diamond in the round of 32; yet I am convinced that had we played 4x14 or even 3x14 and not just 2x14 (which is one segment less than in the knockout matches of the Rosenblum, so the WBF does acknowledge the greater prestige in the Rosenblum), the Chinese team that beat both of us would not have won. But you can always argue like this and I can easily find boards I could have done better, so the format is not to blame.
It is true that the more boards, the more likely we are to find the “right” winners. Yet there are other events more adherent to this. And in how many of the Rosenblum knock out matches do you think the outcome would have been different? The most charming thing about bridge is that so many can win. It does not have to be the favourites every time.
I actually think that the short qualification in the teams is the most questionable aspect. I think there should be 3 days of qualification, especially in the Rosenblum, and preferably also in the mixed. Yet that leaves even less space for the knock outs.
My suggestion is to extend the championships with one day. I confess that 16 days in China was by far enough for me, but if the last two days are the pairs finals (and of course the finalists of the Rosenblum should be allowed to drop directly into the finals) then it is possible to skip the pairs and shorten the stay.
Then I think that the knock-out matches in the Rosenblum should be extended to 3 segments of 16 boards rather than 14. That would at least bring it up to 48 boards rather than 42 and all the top players are used to 64 boards/day from especially the nationals.
I think there are much bigger issues to appoint, foremost the geography of the championships as many have already argued. I love seeing new parts of the world, but my partner and I were the only participants from Denmark because of the expenses and long travel hours.
I hope and believe that the WBF listen to the feedback from the players and will do their best to make the championships attractive to as large a group as possible.
I am looking forward to 2018 and hope to see a lot more join.
Nov. 4, 2014
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