Commentating from afar it is impossible to know how the team feel that they are doing, but I expect that the Open team was disappointed that three (apparent) misjudgements were ruthlessly exploited by the South Africans as the Scots lost 8-22 VP in their first match. But, as the team discovered yesterday, the top teams tend to do this. The final match against the Thais was a ding-dong affair with imps flying all over the place (including 37 imps on the last three boards) - when the dust settled it was a 11-19 VP defeat.
Lots of familiar names in the Sweden that the Open team face first tomorrow, but their remaining matches against Romania and Morocco look easier.
The Open team have played eight of fifteen matches and lie in the bottom third of the table. Unsurprisingly they are not going to qualify for the knock-out stages but a top ten finish in the group is not beyond them.
A very solid performance against Jordon provided a maximum win for the Women in their first match. Despite missing a simple grand slam, they continued with a comfortable 23-7 VP win against Guadaloupe. The final match was tight against a good Polish team and it was decided when a poor Polish slam made, leading to a 12-18 VP defeat.
The Women will not know what to expect when they play Argentina and Kenya in their first two matches tomorrow. But they know that Russia will be very tough, even though they did not compete in the Europeans, not least because they are leading by a match!
The Women team have played nine of thirteen matches and currently lie second, 20 VP ahead of the sixth placed team. There still have two top teams to play but have an excellent opportunity to make the knock-out stages and a good knock-out draw as the top five qualify automatically (and the sixth has a chance).
Two four spades contracts proved costly for the Seniors as they lost 12-18 VP to France, and then there was more trauma as they lost the second match 8-22 VP to bottom-placed Brazil. Missing a simple grand slam was costly and two games went down on more effective opening leads - once again highlighting the fact that the difference between winning and losing can be small. It was a much quieter final match but a wild last board broke the deadlock and, unfortunately for Scotland, resulted in a 13-17 VP defeat.
Another tough day looms for the Seniors as they face Turkey, Germany and Singapore. Although they finished above the Turks and Germans in the Europeans, they narrowly lost both individual matches. I don't know the Singapore team.
The Seniors have played nine of sixteen matches and currently lie fourteenth, currently 26 VP behind a knock-out qualifying spot. As they have played most of the top teams they will hope to progress up the table and I certainly expect them to qualify for the knock-outs, but they will have to play well from now on.