Finals – 1 Day to Go!

September 28th, 2013

USA II is in a tight match, Trailing by 26 with 48 boards to go.  Each segment was very close during Day 1 with Germany edging out the win in each of the 3 segments.  USA II is feeling confident going into the final day – last 48 boards of the 2013 World Championships.  Thinking back 11 days ago when this all started, I said to the team…we have 624 boards to get through to take home the GOLD medal and now we are down to the last 48!  It seems like just yesterday – j/k – it seems like we have been here forever and a day but there is light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter by the hour.  Tomorrow’s start time is 10am Bali time (10pm Saturday - New York Time) so plan on logging onto BBO and watching at least the first segment of the final day of the tournament.

For the Bronze Medal playoffs, the teams only play 4 segments – 66 boards.  In the d’Orsi Bronze Medal playoff match between Poland and France – Poland is up 95 to 70 with only 16 hands to go.  I usually cheer for the team that we beat the previous round so this time Poland had my vote.  The captain congratulated me on our victory against his team in the semi-final match yesterday.  I thanked him and said now go win the Bronze!  He responded that it was going to be very difficult in 66 board  especially with France having a 14 point carry over.  I told him that it was going to be easy and they would win for sure because I was cheering for his team!  Up 25 with 16 boards to play is looking good for my prediction.

In the Bermuda Bowl, USA I is playing off for the Bronze against Poland.  USA 1 is trailing 133-95 with 16 boards to go.  Challenging but not impossible for USA I to pull this one out!

In the Venice Cup finals, USA II has a slight lead on England 112 to 107.  This one is going to go down to the wire – with 48 boards to play, this is anyone’s match!

The awards ceremony is at 8pm Sunday night – here’s to 2 Gold Medals and 1 Bronze Medal for the USA teams at the Closing Ceremony!

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Go USA II

Finals – 2 Days to Go!

September 27th, 2013

USA II went into Day 2 with a score of 120 – 74.  A rather good lead but with 48 boards to play, USA II was cautiously confident to win the Semi Final match against Poland.  The final 3 segments were very close in scoring: 42-37; 42-24 and 43-43.  Not the type of scoring match you want when you are trying to make up 46 imps in 48 boards.  When the final board was played – which by the way was a grand slam – USA II won 247-178.  This grand slam board decided 2 matches – one in the Venice Cup in which USA II was victorious over The Netherlands. The other match was in the Transnational Team Event where the Gordon Team (USA) was trailing by 1 imp with 1 board to go!  The USA pair bid and made 7H and the Polish Junior Team bid only 6H.  Tough beat for both The Netherlands and the Polish Juniors but congrats to the USA Teams!

In the Bermuda Bowl, USA I gave a fight to the end but finally lost to Monaco.  They will play Poland for the Bronze Medal tomorrow.

The finals in the three events are as follows:

Bermuda Bowl: Italy vs. Monaco.  Look for lots of fist fights.  These two teams HATE each other!

Venice Cup: USA II vs England.  This will be a battle royale – two strong teams of very determined women.

d’Orsi Bowl: USA II vs Germany.  Germany has had a good run…but USA II has plans for the GOLD!

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GO USA II

Semi Finals Day 1 in Review

September 26th, 2013

Up 50 with 48 hands to play!  USA II got off to a great start in segment 1 winning 46-16.  Add the 10 point carry over and with 16 hands finished, USA II took the lead 56-16.  In segment 2, USA II extended the lead to 93-47 and ended the day 120-69.  Tomorrow USA II will play 48 more boards to finish the semi finals.  50 points is a good lead but 48 hands is a lot to play!  Game time is 10am (10pm New York Time) so jump on BBO and cheer USA II to victory!  All segments will be broadcasted on BBO.

At this point in the tournament, USA II has been doing the same routine for 10 days.   We all feel like we are in the movie Ground Hog Day and we keep waking up and hoping the day will go differently – but it doesn’t!  It’s the same breakfast, the same 16 hands, the same lunch break, the same 32 boards, the same dinner and the same sleep!  I am wearing the same jewelry that I wore when USA II started their undefeated run of matches.  Mike and Garey has stopped shaving – they are getting pretty hairy!  Mike, Garey and Marc go for the same walk at 7:30am every morning to the statue/park/waterfall.  At the waterfall, you can stand close enough so that if the wave is big enough, then you will get soaked.  The boys were feeling frisky this morning and stood particularly close to the water fall.  The first wave was small and they got a little wet.  Then a second wave went over and Garey got hit pretty hard so Mike was taking a picture of Garey with his wet hair.  But then a third wave came over and got Mike, Garey and Marc – this time the wave also took Garey’s prescription glasses with it!  Boys will be boys.  I can’t watch over them every second of the day.  I got Garey some reading glasses and he seems to be functioning pretty well considering he lost his glasses.  If anyone sees a pair of glasses in the Indian Ocean, please return them to Garey!

The Venice Cup Women are in a tight match against The Netherlands – leading 95-83.

The Bermuda Bowl team is not fairing as well against Monaco – Trailing 114.7-65.

Remember game time is 10am on Friday …

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Go USA II!

 

Semi Finals … Finally!

September 25th, 2013

USA II is into the Semi Finals of the 2013 d’Orsi Bowl beating Scotland handily.  They were a great bunch of guys and huge fun to play against, but in the end, Carolyn and her boys were too much for Scotland.  They had a great run considering Scotland had never sent a team to the World Championships – just to make it out of the round robin is not an easy task – note USA I went to the sidelines.

With an early withdrawal (after 5 sets), USA II went for a team dinner at the Kayuputi Restaurant in the St Regis Hotel.  Several of the USA II members commented on how amazingly beautiful the hotel scenery surrounded us while we ate dinner by the beach.  Staying in form, however, USA II limited their dining experience to 1.5 hours and then back to the hotel for preparation for the semi final match against Poland.

There are four teams remaining: France vs. Germany and USA II vs. Poland.  USA II has a 10 imp carry over from the round robin to start off the match.   The semi finals consists of 96 boards over a two-day period…sound familiar?  USA II will be on BBO at 11am, 2:30pm and 5:20pm Bali Time.  If you can’t sleep, log on and cheer on the team!

In the Bermuda Bowl, USA I beat Canada to advance to the semi finals vs Monico.

In the Venice Cup (women’s), USA I was defeated by England while USA II continues on against The Netherland.

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GO USA II!!

Round of 8 Day 1 in Review

September 24th, 2013

Day 1 of the Round of 8 against Scotland got off to a great start with Carolyn and the boys setting the tone for the batch winning the segment 50-35.  Add USA II’s carry over of 16 points and after 16 boards, USA II was leading 66-35.  Segment two added 26 more points taking the score to 131-74.  For segment 3, Carolyn and the boys finished the day adding 36 to the final score.  At the end of Day 1, USA II leads Scotland 190-97.

The Round of 8 is a 96 board match.  With 48 boards in the books, USA II is optimistic about moving on to the Semi Finals!

In the Venice Cup (Women’s), England took a huge lead over USA I 66-15 wiping out the 8 point carry over in USA I’s favor.  The points went all England’s way for Day 1 with England leading 139-55.  There is still time for USA I to make a come back with 48 boards to go tomorrow.  Poland, on the other hand, got off to a big start against USA II in the first segment but USA II came roaring back to finish the day in the lead 104-60.

In the Bermuda Bowl USA I has a hold of Canada 99-71.7.  It is impressive that Canada has stayed in the match for the first 48 boards.  I expect USA I to take control early on tomorrow and finish off Canada once and for all.

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Go USA II

Round of 8…Here We Come!

September 23rd, 2013

Incredible day of events for the USA Teams…First, Carolyn and her boys beat Japan in Match 1 and then Mike, Marc, Roger and Garey sent a message to France that USA II means business by beating them 49-15!  Unfortunately, USA II lost to the hometown favorites – Indonesia – in the final match of the day.   Despite the loss, USA II remained in second position in the final stands.

In the Venice Cup – both USA Teams made the cut but unfortunately USA I in the d’Orsi Bowl slid out of contention with three boards to go in the final match.  Also, USA II in the Bermuda Bowl will be going home early too.  Both teams had chances of qualifying going into the last match but it wasn’t meant to be…

In the Round of 8 Draw, France chose The Netherlands so USA II took Scotland.  These two teams meant in the Round of 16 of the round robin on vugraph and USA II won 48-14.  Since USA II beat Scotland in the Round Robin match and finished ahead of Scotland in the final standing, USA II starts tomorrow’s match off with a 16 point lead.

All remaining matches will be on BBO so be sure to tune in at 11am, 2:30pm and 5:20pm Bali time!

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Go USA II

Last Day of Round Robin in Review

September 23rd, 2013

USA II is clearly qualifying for the Round of 8 but now our objective is to be in the top three teams.  If both USA teams are in the 4-8 positions, we will play one another in the quarterfinals.  This scenario would result in only one USA team with the possibility of winning a medal.  Going into todays final three matches, USA II is in second position – 20 points ahead of 4th.  USA I is currently in 4th position.

First match up for USA II finds Carolyn and the boys taking on Japan who have a small chance of qualifying in the top 8 but it’s unlikely – especially if they lose to us.  On top of that incentive, ALL teams want to be the USA!  Japan will come out strong but I’m thinking USA II will come out victorious!

The match of the day features USA II against France – the leaders – in Match 2.  France are plodders…they play their cards very well and know what a game bonus is…USA II on the other hand are very aggressive bidders.  This match truly depends on how the cards are divided.    Lots of bad breaks, then France wins – normal distribution, then USA II wins.

The final match of the day  is again home-town favorites – Indonesia who are sitting 6th and 15 points out of the first non-qualifying position.  They are a formidable opponent but my money is on USA II for the match!

The Miss World Competition is back at the hotel for the next three days…I imagine if I went on my usual morning run that I would run into lots of machine guns.  The first weekend that we arrived, the Miss World Competition was at the hotel and you would have thought you were in the Paris airport!  Guns everywhere.  When the competition moved to another island during the week, the guns went away.  What are they saying about bridge players vs. world beauties…hmmm.

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Go USA II

Day 6 in Review

September 22nd, 2013

Day 6 was a huge success – USA II went 3 for 3, beating, Scotland, USA I and India adding 17.31, 15.19, and 17.17 to the running score.  At the end of Day 6, USA II is in 2nd behind France who is dominating the field.  With three matches to go the top five: France 269.43; USA II 241.13; Germany 235.70; USA I 221.44; Belgium  220.75.  The first non-qualifying position is currently 203.89 so it is very likely that USA II will qualify for the round of 8.  The focus now is to remain in the top 3 teams so that we don’t have to play USA I in the quarter finals.  The way the conditions are written, the top 3 teams get to pick from the 5-8 teams.  If neither USA team finishes in the top 3, then the top 3 teams will be all of the other teams and by default USA I and USA II would play in the round of 8.  Hopefully, at least one of the USA teams will finish in the top 3 – and obviously, USA II would be my choice!

Other USA Teams Standings:

Venice Cup USA I 3rd and USA II 4th

Bermuda Bowl USA I 1st and USA II 11th

Go USA II!!

Day 6 Preview

September 21st, 2013

Attention USA Friends…it’s not time to go to sleep! USA II will be on viewgraph for the first two matches today!  Start the coffee and plan to cheer USA II to victory!  Starting at 11am (11pm (Saturday night – New York Time), USA II takes on Scotland who is currently in 6th 12 points behind us in the standings.  More importantly, Scotland is just 15 points out of the first non-qualifying spot so they will be looking to increase that spread to take some of the stress off!  Mike, Marc, Garey and Roger are looking forward to the challenge but we will need all of our USA friends cheering for us on BBO!

Match 2 is the grudge match of the tournament – USA II faces off with USA I who last meant in the team trials.  You can figure out who won that match, can’t you?  Well, assuming Sam shows up on time, it will be a fight to the end.  I’m not telling my line-up for that match just in case USA I has a spy reading our blog :-)   This match will be on BBO starting at 2:30pm (2:30 am NYT).  You can take an hour and a half nap while we have lunch!

The final match of the day is against India who is currently 14th and still has a mathematical chance of qualifying but it is highly unlikely.  The danger in these types of teams is that they all “get up” to play USA teams.  There tournament is considered a success if they beat us!  Not easy being the team that everyone comes after but it sure beats the alternative.

Night before last, several of the USA II team members were walking along the beach and came upon an army training session in action.  Not the typical site to see while strolling on the beach.  There were boats washing up on shore full of army people in full gear carrying machine guns and wearing night goggles.  There were others bent down behind trees and still others laying on the stomachs all pointing in the direction of a hotel that happened to be sitting at their training location.  Oh, and I guess once they got done with their games, the plan was for them to sleep in the make-shift army barracks they had set up along the beach.  Apparently, this only happened under the cover of darkness since everything was gone the next morning.  The funny thing was when we approached, they all froze until we passed.  I wonder if that is part of the practice plan?  Well, anyway, I decided to find another way home so they wouldn’t have to “freeze frame” again on my account.  That was a whole ‘nother adventure! :-)

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Go USA II!

Day 5 Review – Team Dinner Pictures

September 21st, 2013
Day 5 will go down as a success in the record books with USA II winning 2 out of 3 of the day’s matches.  Carolyn and her boys won the first match of the day against China Hong Kong adding 13.97 points to the overall total maintaining 3rd place.  Match two brought on Germany who was a formidable opponent but in the end, USA II won the nail biter by 2 contributing 10.61 to the running total – again keeping USA II in 3rd place.  With teams breathing down USA II’s neck to take over the 3rd place spot, USA II hosted Brazil in the final match of the day.  Unfortunately, the match did not end on a positive note but 7.54 points were added to the leader board total.  With 2 days to play, USA II is currently in 4th place – 24 points out of the 1st non-qualifying position.  Things are looking very good for USA II to qualify for the knockout stage!
Other USA Team Standings:
d’Orsi Senior Bowl USA I – 4th position (just behind USA II)
Venice Cup USA I – 3rd, USA II – 5th
Bermuda Bowl USA I – 2nd, USA II – 13th
Tonight we had a team dinner by the pool at the Saturday night buffet.  The ambiance was incredible:  The ocean waves crashing in the darkness behind the pool, a light breeze whistling through the trees surrounding the pool and Chinese lanterns hanging in the trees.  The live guitar group played American songs with a Indonesian twist softly in the background.  The seafood buffet was the most amazing display of food USA II members have ever seen!  USA II drank, ate and laughed the night away – putting the first five days of the competition to rest and refocusing on the last two days – the opponents are getting tired and USA II are now rejuvenated from the team dinner!  Pictures below show just some of the fun USA II had this evening.