This weekend sees the Women’s and Men’s Pairs and Teams events online. Please note that all four events start at 11:00, and are two sessions with a short break (approx an hour), so should finish by 18:00. You need to be pre-entered with us for every event you plan to play in. You can enter online here.

Both Pairs events are on BBO, so everything will work as normal on that platform. You will need to register for the competition on BBO in the usual fashion. Please make sure to do this no later than 10:40, to allow for any technical difficulties. And if you encounter any, please contact the chief TD, Fearghal O’Boyle, on (086) 2652871 urgently. The entry fee is BB$15 per person, to cover the two sessions. Please ensure that you have sufficient funds in your BBO account when you register.

Both Teams events are on RealBridge, which makes things a little more complicated. You will need to call CBAI HQ in advance to pay the entry fee by credit card. The fee is €12.50 per person, or €50 per team, and it would be appreciated if one person could pay for the entire team, if at all possible. Links for the Teams will be sent by email to all the registered participants for whom we have valid emails not later than Friday afternoon; if you haven’t received this email by then, please check initially with your teammates, and then with the CBAI.

We are conscious that at least some participants will be unfamiliar with the RealBridge platform. If that’s the case, we encourage you to trial it beforehand – at a minimum by testing your camera and microphone beforehand at this site. Fearghal O’Boyle will run a practice session on Thursday 13 January between 17:00 and 18:00 to allow anyone not used to RealBridge to familiarise themselves with it; if you’d like to attend, just email him on and book a spot. And RealBridge themselves have very kindly offered one-to-one support to anyone who needs reassurance that their technology will be set up correctly for their site. They are offering our players two technology clinics, one on Thursday 13 at 12:00 noon, and the other on Friday 14 at 18:30. Use this link and sit at a table, click the Director button, and wait for one of the RealBridge support team to join you. Or you can email their support team at Making sure that everything works okay will only take around five minutes of your time.

The Tournament Director has instructed that cameras and microphones should be left ON throughout the competition. When you join the first session, you and your partner can sit opposite each other at any table you like. The programme will bring you automatically to your randomly assigned table when the competition starts. Please log on in good time for each session, in case of any issues.

We will using a slightly different variant of RealBridge than you will have experienced within a club setting if your club uses the platform. The main difference is that you will only be able to see and hear one of your opponents, and not your partner or the other opponent, during bidding and play. As a result, the alerting procedure is that you should self-alert YOUR OWN CALLS, as you do on BBO, by pressing the “Alert” symbol and using a chat function that will appear on your screen to explain your call, as indicated in the screenshot below. Either opponent may ask for further clarification by private text to the player who made the call. ALL explanations should be made by text only. For the avoidance of doubt (and any potential embarrassment!), please remember that one opponent can both see and hear you throughout proceedings. All participants are asked to keep background noise to an absolute minimum (preferably zero) during the event.

Undos will be permitted ONLY for misclicks in the bidding. There is a double-click option for making your calls and plays that can be activated if you wish – again as on BBO. If you are prone to misclicks, you should take the precaution of activating this double-click option. If you DO misclick in the bidding, please call the TD, who will allow the substitution of another call if 100% certain that the original call was unintended.

For a claim or concession, if there is any doubt or disagreement, please call the TD. Do NOT use the “play on” option.

And if anything goes wrong with your technology DURING the competition, for instance if you lose connection and cannot rejoin, please contact the chief TD, Fearghal O’Boyle, on (086) 2652871 urgently, and he will do whatever he can to help.