New Delhi, 25 October 2023: HCL, a leading global conglomerate, announced that the 20th HCL International Bridge Championship is scheduled from 31st October to 6th November 2023 at the Leela Ambience, New Delhi. The annual Championship is one of the most awaited Bridge events in the country, witnessing participation from top teams and players from India and abroad. This year the total prize money has been increased by 18% to Rs. 26 million (Rs. 2.6 crores) which is one of the highest across any Bridge tournament worldwide. To register for the championship, please visit https://hcl-bridge.com/entries/.
The seven-day championship promises an exhilarating week of strategic prowess and intense competition among the participating teams. 140 teams of over 800 players from 14 countries including USA, Norway, India, Sweden, Poland, Bulgaria and Italy among others will participate under the auspices of the Bridge Federation of India. Leading international players include Zia Mahmood (US), Boye Brogeland (Norway), Mikael Rimstedt (Sweden), and many Indian players including Jaggy Shivadasani.
Kiran Nadar, an internationally acclaimed Bridge player, gold medallist at the 5th Commonwealth Games, and 2018 Asian Games Bridge Medallist expressed her excitement by stating, ” The 20th HCL International Bridge Championship is not just a competition; it’s a celebration of the boundless potential of the human mind. It’s a platform that elevates the sport, placing it on the global map. The championship symbolizes the spirit of sportsmanship and fosters a community that cherishes the game.”
The Championship consists of four main events – ‘Team of Four Gold’, ‘Team of Four Silver’ along with ‘Open Pairs’ & ‘IMP Pairs’. Marking a significant milestone of 20 years of the HCL International Bridge Championship, amateurs will participate with professionals in an exhilarating one-day ProAm event, combining expertise and passion.
Format of the Tournament and other details:
Team of Four Gold Event is open to all. The qualifying round consists of a Swiss League of 10 Rounds of 10 Boards each to be played on the first two days. As part of the Swiss league, in each round, one team plays 10 boards against another with the North/South pairs playing against their opponent’s East/West pairs. The top 16 teams after the Swiss League will advance to the knock-out stage. The knock-out matches will be played over 4 sessions of 14 Boards each. The play-off for the 3rd position will be played over 3 sessions of 14 Boards each. Winners will be awarded the ‘Naresh Tandan Trophy’.
Team of Four Silver Event is open to Indian Bridge players (participation of foreign teams in this event is subject to clearance by the Technical Committee). The qualifying round consists of the Swiss League of 10 Rounds of 10 Boards each to be played on the first two days. The top 16 teams after the Swiss League will advance to the knock-out stage. The knock-out matches will be played over 4 sessions of 14 Boards each. The play-off for 3rd position will be played over 4 sessions of 14 Boards each. Winners will be awarded the ‘Mohini Tandan Trophy’.
Open Match Point Pairs will start on the third day of the tournament and will be played over four days. There would be three elimination rounds consisting of three sessions of 18 Boards each. Top 26 pairs from Elimination-3 round of MP Pairs along with two sponsored pairs will qualify for MP Pairs Gold final, whereas pairs ranked 27-52 will play in the MP Pairs Silver final. The rest of the Elimination-3 qualifiers will be seeded to the IMP Pairs final. The Open Pairs Final will be played over two sessions with the Barometer Howell movement (28 Pairs, 54 Boards). Winners will be awarded the ‘Neena Bonarji Trophy’.
IMP Pairs is a two-day event. The elimination round consists of three sessions of 18 Boards each on the fifth day. IMP pairs final will be played over two sessions of 24 Boards each. Non-qualifiers will be eligible to play IMP Pairs Strata II.
Pro-Am Pairs Tournament: On the last day of the championship, Amateur player will partner a Professional player. The ProAm event will have a maximum of 36 pairs.
The previous editions of the tournament have witnessed participation of over 1000 players from 185 teams, with international teams having players from the USA, Poland, Italy, Bulgaria, Russia, Netherlands, Israel, Sweden, Iceland, South Africa, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Croatia, Denmark, Romania, Japan, Thailand, Jordan, Sri Lanka & Bangladesh have participated in the last few editions of the Championship.
Note to the Editor:
Founded in 1976 as one of India’s original IT garage start-ups, HCL is a pioneer of modern computing with many firsts to its credit, including the introduction of the 8-bit microprocessor-based computer in 1978 well before its global peers. Today, the HCL enterprise has a presence across varied sectors that include technology, healthcare and talent management solutions and comprises three companies – HCL Infosystems, HCL Technologies and HCL Healthcare. The enterprise generates annual revenues of over US$12.9 billion with over 220,000 employees operating across 56 countries. For further information, visit www.hcl.com
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