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Ready to play?

Paul Mendelson

23 April 2021

Meet fellow players at the new Saga Bridge Club, for face-to-face online games.

After a year of restrictions and lockdowns, the neurons in our brain seem to be firing a little less enthusiastically. Those of us who play bridge, however, have had the opportunity to play more and increase our knowledge about this most fascinating of mind-sports.

I have been lucky enough to play and lecture all over the world but I had, until last year, rejected all my friends’ attempts to get me to play online. For me, as well as being a cerebral challenge, bridge is also a fabulous social game, which allows human interaction both competitive and intellectual.

But by the autumn of 2020 I was fully engaged with playing online. However, being unable to see my partner or opponents, and able only to communicate via a chat box left me feeling somewhat dissatisfied.

Then a new British-designed bridge app called RealBridge was developed and now players can sit at a virtual bridge club, see and hear everyone else at their table and a fifth person can dispense advice or make a ruling. All the pleasures of the game are provided for you in the comfort of your home.

Now, Saga is launching its own online Bridge Club, a venture with which I am delighted to be associated. The concept is simple: using the new software, you enjoy all the sociability of home games, club events and friendly competitions.

Unlike any other online bridge club, my team of hosts and experts will welcome you, set up games for your table of four, for you and your partner, or we’ll do some bridge matchmaking and find you a partner.

Initially, we will offer two types of session. Supervised Play – a two-hour session where you can ask for help from a friendly host at the click of a button. You can drop in at any time throughout the session, play for 20 minutes, an hour, or stay for the whole time. It’s relaxed and friendly: a chance to play socially and to receive tips.

If you feel in the mood for some mildly competitive bridge, try our Gentle Duplicate session where you’re committed for the full two hours. You stay with your own partner (or we can find you one), and you will play against different opponents.

Use the Saga online Bridge Club to play with friends, meet new players and to improve your game. And, if you have never played, we’re planning beginners’ classes.

Paul Mendelson is the author of nine books on bridge; see


Start playing today...

  • We cater for all levels of experience with Supervised Play and Gentle Duplicate (see main copy)
  • There are two sessions at each level per week: Gentle Duplicate on Tuesdays and Sundays and Supervised Play on Wednesdays and Fridays
  • Sessions cost from £3 each.
  • Find out more at

Article first published in Saga Magazine May 2021.

Images © Shutterstock, Getty.

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.