By Leong Hung Rey (19S06H), Li Ruiqi (19S06F) and Victor Loh (19S06O)
“Bridge is such a sensational game that I wouldn’t mind being in jail if I had three cellmates who were decent players and who were willing to keep the game going twenty-four hours a day.”
— Warren Buffett
When we think of bridge, many of us associate it with the game “floating bridge” we play with our friends in social settings. But here at Raffles Institution Bridge Club, a whole new world of competitive contract bridge awaits you!
Each round of bridge pits two partnerships against each other – at the table, one pair sits North-South and the other sits East-West. The play goes through 2 stages, the bidding and the cardplay. These terms might sound familiar, but trust us when we tell you it’s nothing like the equivalent in floating bridge. Each partnership is equipped with an arsenal of tools to convey important information about each other’s hand during the bidding stage, so that the partnership can reach the optimal contract.
In the cardplay stage, as opposed to other card games, bridge has a very insignificant luck element! This is because in a tournament, every partnership competing against one another will play an identical set of boards and they will see the exact same cards. Just like chess, when it comes to the play of a bridge hand, there are many techniques involved, and the more skilled partnership will always emerge victorious in the long run. Hence, if you are competitive in nature and have a sharp and keen mind, bridge is the perfect sport for you. Bridge has even been enjoyed by the likes of Eisenhower, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett.
Bridge club is not just a CCA for you to play cards in; it is also a gateway into a whole community of people. If you’re afraid that joining Bridge Club may be too overwhelming to handle, fret not, as your seniors would gladly like to help! We also have friendly seniors who have graduated that come back to our CCA sessions to play bridge with us. They will not only bring along with them pieces of knowledge that will help to improve your bridge, but also share some of their experiences with you and make everyone feel at home at RI Bridge Club.
Bridge Club offers you more than just an activity that you can participate in after lessons – it allows you to gain a new hobby. Trainings are every Wednesday and Friday, 2.30pm to 6.30pm. Every Friday night, some of our members go to the Singapore Contract Bridge Association (SCBA) to play with other bridge enthusiasts and put what we have learnt into practice. These sessions provide hours of entertainment and increase our level of play, the perfect way to spend a Friday night!
The highlights would definitely be the various tournaments we participate in throughout the year. There are numerous inter-school tournaments every year, such as the National School Teams held in June and the Hwa Chong Cup held in April. Our school has done well in these competitions, clinching the top three places for the National School Teams and the top two for the Hwa Chong Cup 2018. Beyond the school level, those who are interested can even participate in national and international competitions. The under-25 Singapore team defied all odds and achieved Silver at the World Youth Bridge Championship, and Singapore clinched 1st and 2nd at the Southeast Asia Bridge Federation Championships, with alumni of Bridge Club playing an instrumental role in these victories.
If you’re still unsure of whether or not to join us, or are still worried about the fact that the sport may be completely new to you, do not worry, as many of your seniors have been in the same situation as you when they were in J1, and are more than willing to help!
So what are you waiting for? Join us, enter the world of bridge and become part of a brand new community that you will call home!