The 16th Balijee International Bridge Championship went off to a majestic start on Friday 23rd March. Ijaz Ahmed and Tahira Nasir Yummy Milk Products declared the Balijee International Bridge Championship open. 

After the well nurtured opening moments, the finest of Pakistan’s bridge stars got engrossed and engaged on  the bridge tables of Lahore Gymkhana for intelligence related application of bridge playing skills. 

The first day of this four days championship was reserved for the pairs’ event, which in bridge is like the Twenty 20 game in cricket and during the first  session and 24 Boards visible throughout the competition was flow of commendable moves by the masters which resulted in the pair of Arsalan Mansoor and Major Hasnat Mehmood (North South section) rallying to the front with a score of 63.28. The remaining boards will be played today and the pairs’ event will conclude around mid-day. Other pairs in North South section who performed admirably were Hamed Mohiuddin & Hassan Askari and this managed  a score of 59.38. At a score of 59.27 is the pair of Anwer Gheewala and Ghulam Mohammed. A few more also look imposing and they are Humayun Khan & Qasim Qureshi (57.83), Major (r) Hasan Akhter Zaidi and Javed Ahmed Miran (57.81), Preeti Nihalani  and Rekha Desai (55.15).

And a most lively aspect of the situation is that  international players of significance like Kemal Shoaib, Khurshid, Ahsan Javed Qureshi, Tehseen Gheewala, Mirza Shauq Hussain are lagging behind but can emerge in front through forceful play.

A total of 116  players divided into 58 pairs are vying for top positions in the Pairs Event which comes to a conclusion today at mid day. And in this race the fancied ones in the East West Section are: Asha Sharma and Avijit Chakvaborty (65.55), Fatima Raza and Rubinna Agha(61.88), Javed Khalid and Saeed Akhter (61.55), Anis ur Rehman and Anwar Mumtaz Kizilbash (60.24) and Yousaf Jan Mohammed and Imran Abedi (59.20).

From the numbers angle the Karachi teams are well represented and so are teams from Lahore, Islamabad, Hyderabad and Abbotabad. At around mid-day today the pairs even will conclude and thereafter the team event will commence to be played over two and a half days. Another special feature of this championship is the application of the Bridgemate Technology which immensely facilitates recording of scores and the final results are available as soon as the play ends.


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