National Grading Scheme

 The NGS provides a fair and trustworthy measure of an individual’s current performance when playing duplicate bridge, which is easy to understand and reflects changes (both up and down) in an individual’s current standard of play.

The NGS indicates an individual’s current playing ability based on the last 80 or so playing sessions at whatever level they play.

The NGS is complementary to the Master Point Scheme, whose existing arrangement is unaltered. The two schemes are independent.

NGS Grades

 The NGS calculates a current grade and a grade band for each EBU member, which is updated whenever new results for that player are received.

The value of your current grade is the scheme’s estimate of the percentage score that you would achieve on average if partnering another player with the same current grade at Match Pointed Pairs in a field of nationally average strength.

EBU grades have been divided into 13 playing card bands, ranging from ‘Ace’ at the top to ‘Two’ at the beginners’ end. Each band covers a 2% range of grade values, with ‘Eight’ having a range of 49‐51%.

 The ‘Ace‘ band is subdivided into four further bands Spades, Hearts, Diamonds & Clubs

Ace of Spades 67+

Ace of Hearts 65 - 67

Ace of Diamonds 63 - 65

Ace of Clubs 61 - 63

King 59 - 61

Queen 57 - 59

Jack 55 - 57

Ten 53 - 55

Nine 51 - 53

Eight 49 - 51

Seven 47 - 49

Six 45 - 47

Five 43 - 45

Four 41 - 43

Three 39 - 41

Two <39

Updating a current grade based on the scores you have achieved in duplicate sessions is not new. Similar methods have been tried and tested for more than 25 years in England, for example at the Young Chelsea and Sheffield Bridge Clubs and at the online club Bridge Club Live. However the details of the NGS scheme are unique to the EBU. For most events, the calculation is based on your overall result for the session

 Calculating your grade

The scheme commenced at the start of “Pay to Play” in April 2010.

When you play in an event your expected score is based on the average of your and your partner’s current grades and on the average strength of the players against whom you are competing. The amount by which you over (or under) achieve this score is used to determine your ‘session grade’ for that session.

For events that aren’t scored using Match Points, we convert the scores to something equivalent in Match Points percentages.We use your session grades for all the events that comprise your most recent 2000 boards and take a weighted average of these to produce your updated current grade. The weighting of older sessions declines linearly and contributes nothing to your current grade when you have played over 2000 boards more recently.

Which events are graded?

Currently, the NGS includes almost all Pairs events wherever you play. Teams events other than for knockouts are also now included.

 Partnership grades

For each partnership you play in, the NGS will also calculate a partnership grade, based on between 150 and 2000 boards played with that partner in the last three years. Some players may like to track this as well as their individual grades


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