45th World Championships: Statement from Latvian Bridge Federation

Dear sirs,

We are writing on behalf of Latvian mixt team who qualified for quarterfinals in WBF 45th Teams Championships in Salsomaggiore.

When arriving for the quarterfinals 1st segment April 4, 2022, Latvian team members were informed that 3 out of 6 members of opponents (USA 1) had positive COVID 19 tests, so they wanted to sub in Cheri Bjerkan, which had played for USA 1 in Venice Cup.

According to a decision of Head TD, the segment was played with a substitute which already was against General Conditions of Contest points 3.6 and 17.4. Also Convention Cards were not filled according to the regulation.

When arriving at the 2nd match, Latvian team noticed that the USA 1 team has been supplemented with 2 other players, which have also had played both in Venice Cup and even in NBO Trophy Cup on the same day, which is against General Conditions of Contest 3.6 and 17.4.

After consulting with Head TD, it was explained that Cheri Bjerkan has received a positive COVID 19 test, and that USA 1 team was allowed to add 2 more players.

As already mentioned, adding these players are against General Conditions of Content points 3.6 and 17.4. Team Captain of Latvia Karlis Rubins requested to provide information based on what the substitutions were allowed, Head TD could not provide the information as well as was unable to provide details on the positive COVID 19 tests of the USA 1 team and the substitute. Later during the evening, Member of the Rules and Regulation committee sent an email to Karlis Rubins, stating that Supplemental Conditions of Contest had a revision dated March 23 2022, namely point 4.4, which allows the replacement of players during the tournament.

However, it clearly states that it needs vetting of the Credentials Committee as well as no objections from the Executive Council.

We believe that these revisions in March 23 of point 4.4 of Supplemental Conditions of Contest cannot be interpreted as overriding General Conditions of Contest, especially for points 3.6 and 17.4, as well as are against the nature of sportsmanship and principles of creating teams. It should not be permissible to add players from other categories, as well as supplementing a team when there is a player who can play, but chooses not to.

We believe that the changes made in the team composition of USA 1 were illegal and we are asking for annulment of quarterfinal boards played so far and instead to award team USA 1 a technical loss for not being able to submit a valid lineup. If quarterfinals are to be proceeded with, Latvian Bridge Federation kindly asks to provide following documentation in a written form (originals or certified copies):

1) Decisions of the Credential Committee to accept the substitutes of USA 1 mixed team;

2) Acceptance of the Executive Council to accept the USA 1 Mixed team substitutes;

3) Positive COVID 19 tests of the USA 1 mixt team and the substitute.

Thank you for cooperation!

Kind Regards, on behalf of Latvian Bridge Federation

Jeļena Alfejeva, president

The 4 th of April, 2022

To WBF

Latvian Bridge Federation

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