LAHORE The 13th Balijee International Bridge Championship will get underway at the bridge tables of Lahore Gymkhana Club from November 6 to 9. This Mega event is an annual affair held under the aegis of the Pakistan Bridge Federation and organised by the Punjab Bridge Association with Mr. Ihsan Qadir as its Chief Organizer. Incidentally, Ihsan has conducted quite a few bridge tournaments at the world level and his skills as an international referee and tournament director stand amply recognised by the World Bridge Federation. Hence with him at the helm, the participants comfort with regard to smooth conduct of the competition and a proper application of the rules is a foregone conclusion. In the absence of the Indian teams who have not been permitted by their Government, three Bangladesh teams and one Jordanian team were confirmed participants until the last mishaps in Lahore. So now this championship is a national event with eight teams from Karachi, 12 from Lahore and six from Rawalpindi/Islamabad besides a team each from Abbotabad and Hyderabad . The championship will consist of a pairs event run over three sessions on the first two days followed up by a team event consisting of 10 (12 Board Matches) Five overall winners in each event will get heavy cash prizes. All participating Ladies team will be getting wholesome prizes too. Front runners of pairs event are likely to be the combinations of Tahir Abbas -Fehmina, Ali Abbass Hamid, Izzat - Jahangir, Shauq- Asfandiyar, Javed Khalid - Rashid Ul Ghazi, Rashid Jaffer - Imran Jaka, Tahir Masood - Javed Miran.,all capable of showing excellence and bridge expertise and most likely we will not be missing the champions from across the border. A similar position exists in the team event; with the participation of teams like Punters, Data Steel, Allana Candy Land, Tariq Aces, Aces-Lums the fight is expected to be fierce and on display will be the courageous moves of players like Mirza Shouq, Tahir Abbas, Ali Abbas, Izzat Khalil, Hamid Zaman, Nauman Butt and Ahsan Qureshi from Lahore and masters of the game like Rashid Jaffer, AR Allana, Sarfraz Ahmed, Tariq Rashid and Rashidul Ghazi from Karachi. Islamabad and Rawalpindi have pitched in their best as Javed Khalid Hussain Kamal, AVM Niaz and Air Cmdr Kayani are well known for their skills. As in the past years, Aijaz Ahmed of Yummy Milk products are sponsoring the grand championship in memory of their father who inspired and guided the bridge activity. Indian teams had been winning this championship since 2005.