Bridge notes: Irish quartet fall short of knock-out stages in mixed team tournament

Players miss out by narrowest of margins on Saturday in Strasbourg at European transnational championships

Aoife MacHale, Peter Goodman, Hilary Dowling-Long and Peter Stewart missed out on the knock-out stages of the mixed teams tournament at the European transnational championships which started in Strasbourg on Saturday by the narrowest of margins.

With 32 teams advancing from the qualifying rounds, they finished 33rd, an agonising .18 of a point short. The Irish quartet had mixed fortune and recorded big wins against strong English, French, Polish and German sides including teams that finished in fourth and fifth places, but they lacked consistency and suffered big losses too, winning five and losing five of the matches played.

Close call

In 26th place with one round remaining, a top-32 finish seemed assured and even when they lost their last game it did not seem disastrous, but a mainly Danish side came from a long way back with a big result to pip the Irish for the last place. The qualifiers were headed by a German-Danish team led by one of the world’s leading female players, Sabine Auken, who is well-known to Irish competitors. French, Polish and English sides filled the next three places. A total of 69 teams competed.

MacHale and Goodman, Dowling-Long and Stewart along with Lucy and John Phelan and Antoinette and Tos McGee carry Irish hopes in the mixed pairs championship. MacHale and Goodman have started well and were best of the Irish in yesterday’s early stages.


The open and women’s team championships will begin on Saturday. Mark Moran, John Carroll, Adam Mesbur, Tommy, Garvey, and Tom Hanlon with French partner Frederic Volcker, as well as Ciaran Coyne, Derek O’Gorman, Peter Pigot and David Walsh will compete in the open while Joan Kenny, Jeannie Fitzgerald, Teresa Rigney, Siobhán Part, Rebecca O’Keefe-Brown and Gilda Pender and also Mary Kelly-Rogers, Anne Fitzpatrick Lucy Phelan and Louise Mitchell will contest the women’s event. Diane Greenwood is part of an Irish, English, Welsh and French squad.

Grades and partnerships

Yeats country congress will take place from Friday to Sunday next with competitions for all grades and partnerships. Proceeds from this online festival will be distributed to a number of charities. Inquiries should be made to

The grand master school of Bridge is running an open competition in the main hall of Taney parish centre, Taney Road, Dublin 14, on Wednesday evening starting at 7.00pm. Proceeds will go towards sending junior players to compete in the American national championships in Chicago next month.