James Paul

“I started playing Bridge at school primarily to beat some friends at it since they wouldn’t stop talking about the game. This goal long since achieved, I have continued playing regardless.

The pinnacle / only real highlight of my bridge career came in the U20 World Championships in Philadelphia, where I was part of the England team that rallied to win from over 50 imps down to the Netherlands going into the final stanza in the semi final, subsequently ending up with a silver medal after (amongst other things) letting through a slam missing two aces in the final.

I have also won two Channel Trophies, one Peggy Bayer & two Junior Camrose (as England), two Portland Bowls and one Varsity Match (as Oxford University) and the Chiltern League quadruple (as Team Cooper).

My favourite bridge hand took place in the final of the Punchbowl (at the Spring 4s) where I bid to a slam missing an ace with a trump suit of AJ9x vs KTxx. US Bermuda Bowl champion Ralph Katz led a trump and his partner followed small. I decided to cash my A next regardless as I figured he wouldn’t have led a singleton trump and this scored when he showed up with Qxxx. When I announced I was playing him for the Q he looked at me as if I had just run over his cat and said “but…how did you know?” He later told me he had made that lead 10 times and it had worked out much better for all of the previous 9. Needless to say it was all a total waste of time as my teammate at the other table opted to lead the side-suit ace as part of a master plan to make the location of the Q as obvious as possible and the board ended up flat.

I have had a number of partners while representing England including Graeme Robertson, Ed Jones, Dan McIntosh, Shivam Shah & Alice Kaye; my current victim is Alex Roberts.”

Last updated: February 2015

Major International Selections
World Youth Team Championships: 2010
Junior European Championships: 2009 and 2015

Junior Camrose Selections: 2011 2012 and 2015

Peggy Bayer Trophy Selections: 2008 and 2009