TO 2003 BRIDGE WEEK
June 3 - Monday, June 9, 2003
CNTC (pictured above left to right) :: Jurek Czyzowicz, Vincent
Demuy, Darren Wolpert, Gavin Wolpert (back), Nicolas L'Ecuyer,
Open Champions Decided
by Bob Christie
It has been a long but ultimately successful road for Kamel Fergani
and his team. Last year, the Fergani team was a much different
squad having only 3 of the present team members (Fergani, LíEcuyer
and Czyzowicz). They came right down to the finals for the CNTC
Open Gold medal but failed in a close match against Bryan Maksymetz
and his team. A few years ago, they actually won the gold, but
because Canada had done so dismally in the previous Bermuda Bowl,
they were denied a berth in the world championship event. This
year, much of the team was back together. Fergani and LíEcuyer
as usual anchored the team. Jurek Czyzowicz, an experienced player
who spent much of his life in Poland (and the Poles take their
bridge seriously) partnered with a young man named Darren Wolpert,
who at 27 is a wonder to watch. Speaking of wonders, however,
are the Wunderkind of the Fergani team. Darrenís younger
brother Gavin is 20 and his partner Vincent Demuy is 19. This
team IS Canada. Francophone and Anglophone. Young and old. Quebec
and Ontario. And can they ever play bridge.
Their march to Monaco began with a team of seasoned veterans with
scads of international experience, success in Canadian nationals
and enough years of bridge under their belt to make any player
quake. But not the Fergani team. 63-20 after 18 boards. 138-46
after 36 and 187-84 after 54. And the Nagy team of George Mittelman,
Robert Lebi, John Carruthers, and Joseph Silver said "uncle."
They retired from the field.
Then, their old nemesis from last year, Team Maksymetz were back
to take them in 128 boards to decide who qualified to play Mexico
for the allotted position in the Bermuda bowl, scheduled for later
this year in Monaco. The Maksymetz team were fully aware of the
talent in this team. The anchor partnership seemed to be on slightly
different wavelengths (not that any of we mere mortals would notice)
so they decided to use the rules and augment their 4 person team
to take on the Fergani squad. They added George Mittelman to play
with Allan Graves and John Carruthers to partner with Brian Maksymetz.
The Dan Jacob and Gord McCormond would stay a pair.
This match was not going to be as easy. 128 boards and no tomorrow.
Day 1 was a see saw: 25-20 Maksymetz after 16. Even worse at 67-34
after the first 32 board session. A big comeback to see Fergani
top Maksymetz 100-95 after 48 and Maksymetz holding a razor thin
lead 131-127 after the first day. Darren Wolpert expressed the
opinion that they had been shut out of the Bermuda Bowl a few
years ago and this just wasnít an option this time. Clearly
he meant what he said. The Fergani team came out on Wednesday
and never looked back. Quarter by quarter it went 168-157 Fergani,
235-185 Fergani, 246-226 Fergani and then the final score 285-250.
The Maksymetz team have won before and lost before and they were
as gracious in defeat as they always are in victory. Class is
what this level of bridge is all about. All of these fine players
will be back for many years to come.
Would that Telus would have shown as much class. We were running
a VuGraph on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to show these matches
to the world. Monday we had, of course, the power failures that
we cannot blame anybody for. Tuesday was technically wonderful.
BUT, on Wednesday, the Internet line kept on dropping out. It
was so bad that we had to halt the broadcast and try to fix things
for the evening. At the last minute we tried to get a system using
a wireless modem, but even there, on another part of the Telus
service, it kept dropping every line in the area. We could not
continue, but we were, at least, capable of satisfying ourselves
that it was not our equipment, but was, rather, a fault with Telus,
which, of course, they refuse to admit. It is so annoying to find
that big companies have concluded that deny, deny, deny is the
way to success. We spent a number of hours trying to trace a problem
that we were powerless to solve. This compares to the quality
of service we received last week during the height of Canada Bridge
Week at the Executive Inn and Conference Centre in downtown Penticton.
That service was not only provided, it was donated by Shaw Cable
and it worked flawlessly all week without so much as a hiccup.
Of course, I always support the organizations that are friends
of Bridge and I count Shaw in that number.
Anyway, the next Canada Bridge Week is scheduled for St. Catherines,
Ontario, but I suspect they will return to Penticton (as all of
us do) sooner than they might have expected before discovering
what a wonderful venue we have right here in the Southern Okanogan.
and CWTC 2003 vs 2002 Playoff results :: CNTC
CNTC :: Kamel Fergani, Longueuil, QC; Nicolas
L_Ecuyer, Montreal, PQ; Jurek Czyzowicz, Aylmer, QC; Darren Wolpert,
Gavin Wolpert, Toronto, ON; Vincent Demuy, Montreal, QC.
CNTC :: Peter Nagy - NPC in Memoriam, John Carruthers,
Robert Lebi, George Mittelman, Toronto, ON; Joseph Silver, Côte-St-Luc,
COPC :: John Rayner - John Duquette
SILVER COPC :: Carole Berry - John Gillespie
COPC :: Barry Senensky - Bob Kuz
CWTC :: Dianna Gordon, Beverly Kraft, Toronto,
ON; Brenda Bryant, Ferndale, MI; Francine Cimon, Montreal, QC;
Joan Eaton, Willowdale, ON; Barbara Clinton, Aurora, ON
CWTC :: Rhonda Foster, New Westminster, BC; Marcia
Christie, Surrey, BC; Samantha Nystrom, Burnaby, BC; June Pocock,
CWTC :: Kathy Adachi, Sheila Sache, Delta, BC;
Leslie Gold, White Rock, BC; Ina Andersen, Surrey, BC
CNTC B 2003 CHAMPIONS
CNTCB :: William Ge, Philip Chen, Gary Ge, Vancouver,
BC; Runlu Wang, Delta, BC; Shi Yan, Vancouver, BC
CNTCB :: Larry Custead, Mark Churchman, Saskatoon,
SK; Derrick Furber, Len Ripplinger, Deb Ripplinger, Prince Albert,
CNTCB :: Richard Soderstrom, Ovidiu Stanica,
Ottawa, ON; Ron Zambonini, Nepean, ON; Michael Baggott , North
VUGRAPH :: There will be a vugraph at
BRIDGE BASE ONLINE online. Click
Here for info and schedule ::>
2002-2003 WINNER PLAYOFF MATCHES :: Immediately
following the finals of the CNTCA and CWTC there will be a playoff
between the 2002 winners and the 2003 winners. The winners of
these playoffs will then play off against Mexico to determine
a Zone 2 representative to the 2003 Bermuda Bowl. The team that
loses these playoffs will receive a $6,000 cash prize.
winner of the 2004 CNTC will be the team that will be eligible
to be named as Canada's representative to the 2004 World Team
Olympiad. Previously, problems arose from selecting our international
representatives nearly a year in advance of the International
Competition to which they are eligible to attend. This change
has been made in order to address these concerns. After 2003,
when a team wins the CNTC or CWTC they will be attending the World
event shortly thereafter.
two playoff matches promise to be as exciting as the National
BRIDGE WEEK 2004 IN ST CATHARINES :: The
Canadian Bridge Federation is pleased to announce that St. Catharines,
Ontario has been awarded the 2004 Canadian Bridge Week. The event
will be held in St. Catharines from June 19- 26, 2004.
The event will be held at the Parkway Quality Inn and Convention
Centre in St. Catharines. St. Catharines has set up an organizing
committee that will ensure this is a wonderful event. The organizing
committee consists of: Co-Chairs: Paul Thurston and Fred Andreychuk
John MacKay; Directors: Stan Dillabough, Jerry Smee and John Arblaster.
Also playing key roles in hosting Bridge Week 2004 will be executive
members and volunteers from the Niagara District Bridge Association
under the capable leadership of President Lena Byl.
The Canadian Bridge Federation is looking forward to a terrific
event in 2004.