Calcutta: The 54th Winter Nationals Bridge Championship begins on Sunday at the Gitanjali Stadium. The championship, which ends on December 22, features the most important national events — the Open Team for Ruia Trophies for Gold and Silver, Holkar for Open Pairs, IMP pairs, junior team and mixed pairs.
Last year the total entries in Chennai was 130. However, the total entries will be close to 200 this time.
The Championship starts with the three days Swiss league for qualifying for the Ruia teams after which 16 and 12 teams will qualify for the Ruia Gold and Silver, respectively.
Ruia Gold will play knockout qualifications for quarters and thereafter and Silver will conclude with all super-leagues. During the last four days IMP Pairs will be held, followed by Holkar Pairs elimination and Ruia teams, which will be held simultaneously.
The defending champions Indian Railways comprises Manas Mukherjee, Subir Majumder, Sumit Mukherjee, Debabrata Majumdar, Sandip Datta and Rana Roy, who comes in place of Amarnath Bannerjee, who is indisposed. The last year’s winners also represented the Indian team in the IMSA Olympiad in last August in Lille, France.
Other close contenders for the Ruia Trophy is Formidables having Kiran Nadar, Satyanarain, Venketaraman, B Prabhakar, Sunit Choksi, Rajeswar Tewari. Dhampur Sugar are also expected to put up good fight.