March 31, 2012

Precision Marathon outwit JK IV to retain national crown


By Syed Khalid Mahmood

Precision Marathon, a blend of youth and experience, retained the crown by outwitting JK IV, comprising of seasoned campaigners, in the final of the National Bridge Championship 2012 which concluded at the Lahore Gymkhana on March 27.

By winning the championship, which also served as the national trials, Precision Marathon earned the right to represent Pakistan in the 2nd World Mind Sports Championship, scheduled to be staged at Lille, France, in August.

It was in the fitness of things that the final of the event was contested between the two best teams of the competition. Precision Marathon came back strongly after an uncertain start in the league matches while JK IV remained impressive all along until the final where they were downed by the former.

Starting the final with a disadvantage of 12.5 Victory Points (VPs), Precision Marathon from Karachi, featuring Tehsin Gheewala, Hasan Askari, Khalid Mohiuddin, Mubashir Puri, Junaid Said and Farrukh Liaquat with Tariq Rasheed Khan being the non-playing captain, triumphed in all the four segements to win the final 138-111.5.

JK IV from Lahore, containing Javed Khalid, Mirza Shauq Hussain, Saeed Akhtar and Masud Mazhar, who emerged as the top team in the league matches and extended their brilliant run in the semifinal against Century Insurance, could not reproduce their top game in the title clash.

JK IV, comprising of seasoned campaigners, entered the final with a carryover of 12.5 VPs on the basis of their better show in the earlier games. But they were derailed in the very first segment which their opponents won 47-24,

Precision Marathon, showing mental toughness to come to terms with the pressure games, did not look back after the excellent start which enabled them to neutralize the carryover factor very early.

Fierce battle for supremacy was witnessed in the remaining three segments between the two top sides of the event. Neither of them was prepared to give up but Precision Marathon emerged triumphant in all those closely contested ties to retain control.

They won the last three segments by the scores of 27-19, 31-26 and 33-30 with 27.5 VPs seperating the sides in the end. JK IV fought gallantly, not allowing their opponents to go into comfort zone at any stage, and the contest remained open until the end.

Originally eight teams from all over the country were to take part in the five-day final leg of the National Championship but Allana from Karachi pulled out at the eleventh hour. The seven participating teams were engaged in a double round robin battle, spread over three days, before the knockout phase starting with the semifinals.


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