Ladies pair leads Bali Jee International bridge championship


LAHORE, Mar 23 (APP)- With a high quality display of superb thinking, The ladies pair of Fatima Raza (Karachi) and Rubina Agha (Lahore) popped up in front and dominated the opening day of the Bali Jee international bridge championship here on Thursday at Lahore Gymkhana card room.
The first day was reserved for the pairs’ event, which in bridge is like the Twenty 20 game in cricket and at the end of the first session and 24 boards after some living and breathing moves both the ladies put up a fine display of play to remain at top in the event which lo have the participation of 43 male pairs.
As for the third session, it will be contested tomorrow, Friday and the Pairs event will conclude by mid day on the same day.
The Balijee Championship is a prestigious event held to honor the memory of Sheikh Muhammad Iqbal, affectionately known as Balijee to his friends and bridge mates and from the moment his daughter Tahira Nasir declared the Balijee bridge open on the Pakistan Day.
With 96 of the finest of Pakistan’s bridge stars occupying the bridge tables and some of them were the internationally known Khurshid Hadi, Kemal Shoaib, Hasan Askari, Parvez Mirza, Gulzar Ahmed, Tehsin Ghee walain the presence of apan Desai from India and Imran Abedi from Kuwait.
Out of the 48 pairs contesting for honors and cash prizes those who are making ripples of excellence are Fatima Raza and Rubina Agha and they have an aggregate of 67.75 points at the end of the first session of 24 boards. Just a little behind is the pair of Ghalib Bandesha and Maj Asad Maqbool (Lahore) with a tally of 63.74 points. A few marginal points behind them is the pair of Javed Khalid and Saeed of Islamabad at a score 63.31 points. Other pairs in the race are Tahir Abbas and Osman Bashir at 61.47 points, Sheikh Abdul Muqeet and Wajahat Ali Suri at 61.36 points. Air Cmdr(r) Qamar S.Kiani and AVM(r) Niaz Husssain at 59.09 points. Still more pairs who lie way down the leaders ladders but have the ability to recover are Abida Ali and Najam Abid. They are placed at 57.90 points. Mazhar Jaffery and partner Maqbool Ahmed are at 55.52 points, and closely following is the pair of Izzat Khalil and Safdar M.Khan at 55.30 points.
And with two more sessions to go there is every likelihood of a change in the leader board.
For sponsors of the event, Ajaz Ahmad of Yummy Milk Products, the joy of holding such a championship was intense and the participation of champions enhanced his glee and delight.