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    Margaret Bourke Invitational Teams 2021

    This year marked a very sad day in Australian Bridge. We lost one of the greats of the game, Margaret ‘Margi’ Bourke. (See obituary here)

    Margi’s history in bridge is nothing short of amazing. She was loved by all who knew her and respected by all those who encountered her at the bridge table.

    It was a testament to her that only a short while after her passing that a brand-new event was created in her honour – the Margaret Bourke Invitational.

    At the inaugural event, 30 top teams participated – not just in Australia but from all over the world. The field included several world champions, multiple Asia Pacific champions and Australian national champions.

    It was a true reflection on how loved Margi was in the global bridge community.

    The event was held in October as a three-day event, with two days of qualifying (eight matches) at the end of which four teams progress to the semi-finals.

    In the end, Victorians who members of the teams that took out the top two spots. The standings after the eight rounds were:

    1. Thompson (with Victorian Ben Thompson on the team) 131.61 Victory Points (VPs)
    2. Ashton (with Victorian Ellena Moskovsky) 95.65
    3. New Zealand (NZ) Mixed 95.01
    4. Cornell (NZ Open including two world champions) 94.36
    5. Thomson (Ron Klinger just missing out on the finals by .08 of a point where 20 points per match is available) 94.28

    Thompson elected to play NZ Mixed, leaving Ashton to play Cornell in the semi-finals.

    The semi-finals and final consisted of two, 12 board matches. The match between Thompson and NZ Mixed ended up being a close affair. Eighteen imps were won on the final two hands,to bring the result back to 83 (NZ Mixed) – 70 (Thompson).

    Congratulations go to the Thompson team for making it through to the semi-final of a world class event and collecting equal third place. The other final was a rather one-sided team Ashton winning 84 – 14.

    This left Ellena’s team to play off for first place in the biggest event of the year. The two teams were as follows:

    Ashton – Sophie Ashton – Sartaj Hans – Maurits Van Der Vlugt – Avi Kanetkar – Dave Wiltshire – Ellena Moskovsky
    NZ Mixed – Barry Jones – Jenny Millington – Blair Fisher – Liz Fisher – Sam Simpson – Jo Simpson

    Ashton won the final comprehensively; 59-18.

    Ellena and her team have pulled off a commendable victory. Congratulations! It is not every day we have two Victorian teams in a world level event. It’s even more rare that we have a winning Victorian team in a world class event.

    Congratulations to the event organisers and everyone involved in making this event happen. To read more about this event, click here.

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