Lahore-Indo-Pak team emerged as winners in the 16th Balijee International Bridge Championship, which concluded here at the bridge tables of Lahore Gymkhana on Monday.

Top players from India, Dubai and Kuwait and also the elite ones of Pakistan from Karachi, Islamabad, Rawalpindi and other cities took part in the mega bridge event. Indo-Pak team were remarkable in application of bridge playing attributes like intelligence, quick thinking, stable temperament, decision power and cohesive team effort.

Indo-Pak team members Gulzar Ahmed Bilal, Farrukh Liaqat and Sapan Desai were dazzling and radiant, the star of the team, Subash Gupta, an accomplished international, was lustrous and luminous in defining the team strategy, which brought rich dividends and a comfortable dominance related victory. The Indo-Pak team remained in command and control through superb and quality play winning all ten boards. Not once were they under threat of defeat and in the process even the best teams like Tehsin Ghee Wala, Izzo IV, Punters and Next Pharma were a casualty.

Once again Aijaz Ahmad of Yummy Milk Products and his sister Mrs Tahira Nasir have been superb hosts and in particular, Tahira Nasir appeared as the live wire in the whole process. The spirit of bridge promotion is there and also continuously oozing is the family hospitality with the result that Balijee Bridge is an integral part of the national bridge calendar, thus keeping the memory of a noble father Sheikh M Iqbal (affectionately known as Balijee) alive.

As for the final days sessions, the overnight leaders Indo-Pak remained on winning track and though they tried hard the Tehsin Gheewala team had to be content with the runners up slot. Tehsin Gheewala team comprising Rashidul Ghazi, M Hashmat, Imran Abedi, Fatima Raza finished second with 134.67%, while Izzo IV having Jahangir Ahmed, Farooq Alvi, Mudessar Rahim, Qasim Rahim and Abida Ali were third with 111.55%.,

Next Pharma consisting of Ahsan Javed Qureshi, Nauman Khalid Butt, Zia Hyder Naqi, Mirza Shauq Hussain and Ghias A Malik earned fourth position, (110.81%) while at number five were Punters team which has Tahir Abbas Mirza, Ali Abbas Mirza, Hamid Zaman, Fehmina Shauq, Mirza Asfandiyar Hussain and Mohsin Chandna (110.41%).  The Balijee Bridge gala has established itself as an event of magnificence although Tahira Nasir was gracious in passing on the credit to the sculptors, architects and artisans with Ihsan Qadir in the forefront conducting all stages with precision, accuracy and free of compromises plus exercising exemplary control over the teams. Special one, who deserve a mention here, were Ameer Hassan, convener card room Khawaja Imran Zubair and captain Abubakr. At the prize distribution ceremony, Air Marshal Syed Shahid Zulfiqar Ali, convener card room Khawaja Imran Zubair and Lahore Gymkhana chairman Kamran Lashari awarded prizes to the winning teams.


Winning Team Indo-Pak and runners-up team Tehsin Gheewala pose for a photo during the concluding ceremony of Blalijee International Bridge.