Fall-Winter Mentorship Program

Post date: Sep 11, 2019 8:5:52 PM

Sign up for the Fall-Winter Mentoring Cycle

Clipboards are at the Club

The purpose of the Missoula Bridge Mentoring Program is to guide aspiring bridge players in all aspects of the game.


§ Mentee Eligibility: 1) Less than 99 MP’s and 2) committed to improving their bridge game by attending classes or coached play.

§ Mentor-Mentee Partnerships will be assigned by the Mentoring Committee.

§ Mentees may choose to find mentors on their own and thus will not be a part of the Mentoring Program. No FreePlays for Mentor.

§ Mentors and Mentees should be available to play together an average of twice a month for a total of 8 times.


§ Mentors will be given 8 free plays to be used from October through February.

§ Mentor Eligibility: Sound knowledge of basic conventions, play of the hand and defense. You do not need a specific # of MP’s.

§ Mentors will play according to the conventions that the Mentee has learned.

§ Mentors are encouraged to coach and build the confidence of the Mentee. They are not expected to teach new conventions.

Tips from Experienced Mentors to New Mentors

§ Treat your partner like royalty. Praise your partner. It increases confidence. A confident, happy partner always plays better. Be understanding; we all make mistakes. When you make yours, you will want reassurance, not criticism.

§ Unnecessary conversation is distracting (to you, too — think about what is happening at the table). It is irritating to see your partner looking around the room, bored with the game and talking about other things.

§ Unpleasant behavior of any kind has no place at the bridge table. Dirty looks, criticism, etc.,make everyone feel uncomfortable.

§ Bridge is a partnership game; leave your ego out of it. No one enjoys playing with a “hand hog.”

§ Complaining about “bad cards” is useless. Everyone has them at times; it evens out. Sore losers and complainers are not invited back.

§ Do not give lessons at the table. If you should be asked, keep the answers short. Postmortems should be held after the session, not after each board.

§ As dummy, do not put your cards on the table until the opening lead has been made. To do so gives the defense a real advantage; it tells the opening leader whether or not to lead a trump.

§ When you become the dummy, do not ask your partner “to pass his hand across the table” for you to see. It may make partner nervous, delays the game and also forfeits your dummy rights.

§ If you are declaring a hopeless contract, look confident. Maybe your opponents will make a mistake. Never give up!

§ Pay attention, watch, listen and learn. When you are dummy (as well as when you play), practice counting how many cards have been played in every suit. Start with the trump suit or a long suit in notrump. “Read” your opponents; do they usually underbid? Overbid? Play slowly when they have a certain kind of problem? Knowing your opponents can be a great advantage.

§ Although it is okay to “read” your opponents, it is not okay to read your partner’s hesitations or listen for voice inflections. (This is not allowed by the bridge laws.) Bidding and playing “in tempo” without “telling hesitation” will make you an ethical and, therefore, popular player.

§ When you are dummy, you are still in the game. It is dummy’s responsibility to make sure that partner follows suit. If partner shows out, you may ask, “No hearts, partner?” Be sure partner plays the cards from the correct hand. Dummy may point out, “You are in the dummy, partner,” if declarer attempts to lead from his hand when the lead is in dummy. Dummy’s conversation during the play of the hand is limited to those two comments.