We are pleased to present the CBAI Annual Newsletter for 2020. In keeping with the theme of the year, it is in digital rather than physical format, but we hope that you will enjoy it none the less for that; indeed it may be that this format, being more climate-friendly, is in fact the appropriate one nowadays. If you have thoughts on this, please let us know.

In the Newsletter you will find:

  • Messages from the (continuing) CBAI President, Neil Burke, and Chief Executive, Paul Porteous;
  • Reports from our thirteen regions, and from Joint Honorary Secretary Martin Brady on behalf of the IBU, on their bridge activities during the truncated 2019/20 season;
  • Pictures of the presentation of the 2020 President’s Award to the very deserving winner, Denise Conlon of Athlone;
  • News of an exciting new online bridge academy, Grand Master Bridge, being planned by Rory Egan and Thomas MacCormac, with a special introductory offer for CBAI members;
  • Reminders of excellent bridge primers by CBAI-accredited teachers Maire O’Keeffe (“Bridge Made Simple”) and Michael O’Loughlin (“Basic Card Play”), both available from our shop at the very reasonable price of €10;
  • A list of bridge classes (all online) being held in the current term;
  • Details of hotel and bed & breakfast breaks being offered;
  • A review of the junior bridge scene, including an interview with Under-26 international Michael Donnelly;
  • A commentary from national Tournament Director Fearghal O’Boyle on the online laws of bridge, in which he makes a number of recommendations and seeks feedback; given that online is where it’s at for most of us for the moment, we need to be able to adapt laws designed for in-person bridge to suit the online variant of the game. In this respect, we would draw your attention to the CBAI Code of Conduct, which applies equally to the online game as it does to in-person bridge; there have been a number of cheating allegations in other jurisdictions since competitive bridge went online – our hope is that we will not have any within the CBAI’s games;
  • Details of two recent works by CBAI members – a cookbook and culinary reminiscences by Maura Foley of Kenmare, and an album of easy listening music by Jennifer Cullen of Dublin South;
  • An offer of special bridge-themed facemasks from former CBAI-staffer Fionuala Gill in aid of charity – just the job for a (hopefully imminent) return to in-person bridge;
  • And last but not least, dates for your virtual bridge diary, with a number of CBAI competitions and congresses planned for BBO in the coming months.

Our thanks to all who contributed to the newsletter, and of course to our advertisers. We would encourage you to make every effort to support them in these challenging times.

We hope that the newsletter will have something for everyone, and that members will enjoy it. As mentioned above, the format is a bit different this year. We would welcome your feedback on any aspect of it, and on suggestions that you’d like to see included in future publications from us.