Bill Gates loves it. Martina Navratilova excels at it and Warren Buffet can’t get enough of it.
There’s an underground movement happening in the Northern Illawarra and now, we’ve produced a National champion!
Former Austinmer Primary School and Smiths Hill High student Nico Ranson is in Seoul, representing Australia in the Junior Team at the Asia Pacific Bridge Championships.
Despite the 1950s stereotype, the game is alive and well, and enjoying a resurgence in popularity.
Nico learned the art from his family, which has been playing Bridge regularly in Austinmer and Thirroul for 25 years.
“Nico has always been exposed to Bridge,” says father David Ranson. “It’s like Chess but it has a social dimension because you work in a team so you have to be strategic and you have to communicate.”
David says it’s a game you can learn in six weeks but to take it to the next level can take years of practice.
“There have been millions of books written about the game,” says David, “and it’s a thriving community online where you can play with people from anywhere in he world- or even pit yourself against a robot!
“It’s a great game and a great opportunity to get together to play, eat good food and drink wine!”
Thirroul even has its own Bridge Club!
But it’s Nico who has the official letter from the National Bridge Federation saying he’s an elite athlete.
“Nico is the President of the Bridge Club at Sydney Uni,” says David. “He’s already competed at tournaments across the country and in January, was named an Australian representative.
“It’s a supportive community,” he says. “Australia has won four out of the last six championships so they’re expected to perform well. ”
The competition kicked off May 29- The Australian Junior Men’s team is currently sitting third on the ladder
You can send Nico and his team a message of support at email@example.com