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It is with great sadness that we report the death of John Bird. John was a member of the Manchester Bridge Club for very many years and also a regular player at Bramhall where he used to partner Geoff Storry amongst others. He was a gentleman at the bridge table and will be greatly missed.
His funeral will be at St. Catherine’s Church, School Lane, Didsbury at 3.30pm on Thursday 9th July 2015.
Third National Win for Manchester
Manchester won the National Counties League final held at Coventry Bridge Club on Sunday 28th June to add to their recent wins in the Pachabo and Garden Cities .
The team was John Holland/Gary Hyett, Tom Slater/Alec Smalley, John Currie/Rodney Lighton and Michael Byrne/Michael Newman.
The final is held between the winners of the Northern League, Southern League, Eastern Counties, Midlands League and Western league.
The team started as heavy favourites on paper, but Manchester have a poor record in this event (finishing second nearly every year, winning it only once before in 2011). They won every match comfortably, and had a small half time lead which they more than doubled in the second half.
In the B division Lancashire (winners of the Northern League B division) led at half time but slipped to fourth at the end, in the C division the Yorkshire team came second behind Devon.
The best pair on the cross-IMP scoring of all the pairs were John Holland and Gary Hyett by a large margin, the other pairs were all plus though and it was a good team effort, although perhaps slam bidding might be the topic of the next County Training Seminar. This was John Currie's first National win. Full results are here.
John Currie, Gary Hyett, Rodney Lighton, Michael Newman
Michael Byrne, John Holland , Tom Slater, Alec Smalley
An unfortunate scheduling clash with the Inter Counties League Final (see above) meant that Manchester sent two completely different teams to the two days of the President's Cup at Derby on 27-28th June.
There was a record entry of 13 teams. After Saturday Manchester had a small lead, but slipped to third by the end of Sunday's play. The event was won by Yorkshire with Derbyshire second. The teams were: Saturday John Currie/Rodney Lighton, John Holland/Gary Hyett, Alec Smalley/Tom Slater, Alan Jones/David Barton; Sunday Gillian McMullan/Neil Thomas, Jeff Morris/John Hassett, Ken Hassell/Raymond Semp, Peter Jones/David Audley. Top on the cross imp scoring were Gary /John, with Alan/David next. The other pairs on Saturday both had a good score too. On Sunday Raymond/Ken and Neil/Gillian did well. Full results are here and here (though the Butlers shown are incorrect).
Manchester Bridge Club Win Garden Cities
Congratulations to the Manchester Bridge Club Team of Michael Byrne/Michael Newman, Alan Mould/John Holland, John Hassett/Jeff Morris and Andrew Woodcock/Catherine Draper who won the Garden Cities trophy at Solihull on Saturday 13th June. They competed against seven other club teams who had qualified from regional finals. Lying second to Cambridge after the first session they overtook them to win by six VPs with third placed Chislehurst (Kent) some way behind. Manchester have won the trophy previously in 1988, 2000 and 2003. Full results are on the EBU web site.
Jeff Morris, Alan Mould, Michael Newman, Michael Byrne
Catherine Draper, John Holland, Andrew Woodcock, John Hassett
Manchester Win Pachabo
Congratulations to the Manchester team of John Holland, Rodney Lighton, Michael Newman, Alan Mould and Michael Byrne who have won the Pachabo Trophy for Manchester for the first time since Manchester became a separate county in 1987. They played at West Bromwich on 6-7th June qualifying as Goldstone Trophy winners.
The first four played all day on Saturday and built up a good lead ahead of Surrey by the end of the day winning 13 out of 15 matches. Michael Byrne joined the team on Sunday. Manchester started badly with three losses followed by a win and three more losses to be in fourth place with three matches to go. Fortunately three good wins over Middlesex, Suffolk and Lancashire left Manchester 5.5 points ahead of Surrey. This win breaks a streak of Manchester teams finishing second in National Events. Hopefully it presages a succesful Tollemache next season. This was the first national win for a long time for Rodney Lighton and Alan Mould.
John Holland, Alan Mould, Michael Byrne, Michael Newman, Rodney Lighton