Bridge: An entrant that raises eyebrows!

India’s performance at the Asia Cup Bridge Championships in Goa in June was enough to persuade the IOA to field a full squad of 24 players for Jakarta-Palembang.

A huge draw: India boasts of more than 5,000 members registered with the World Bridge Federation, the highest in the Asia-Pacific region.   -  Mahesh Harilal

Is bridge a sport or a game? The debate may rage on, but all we need to know now is that the mind sport (or tactical card game), played using the standard 52-card deck, is among the 40 disciplines to be featured at the Asian Games this year. In fact, bridge is making its debut at the meet.

India boasts of more than 5,000 members registered with the World Bridge Federation, the highest in the Asia-Pacific region, and the country’s performance at the Asia Cup Bridge Championships in Goa in June — gold in the super mixed team event, silver in the seniors and bronze in the men’s and mixed team categories — was enough to persuade the Indian Olympic Association to allow the Bridge Federation of India to field a full squad of 24 players for Jakarta-Palembang.

Squad:

Women: Rita Choksi, Feroza Chothia, Hema Deora, Bharati Dey, Marianne Karmarkar, Himani Khandelwal, Kiran Nadar, Aparna Sain, Vasanti Shah.

Men: Pranab Bardhan, Sapan Desai, Subhash Gupta, Rajeev Khandelwal, Ajay Khare, Finton Lewis, Debabrata Majumder, Gopinath Manna, Sumit Mukherjee, Shibhnath Dey Sarkar, Bachiraju Satyanarayana, Jaggy Shivdasani, Arun Kumar Sinha, Rajeshwar Tewari, Raju Tolani

Reserves: Alka Kshrisagar, Keyzad Anklesaria, Abhijit Chakraborty, Sunit Chokshi, Sridhar Padmanabhan, Sunderram S