You are hereGrades Ratings Rankings

Grades Ratings Rankings

By sitemaster - Posted on 29 October 2014

It is hoped this will shed the light of understanding about Ratings, Rankings, and Grades

Before we start - as explained more fully on the NZ Bridge website masterpoints are awarded for success in any club session played. The top placed pairings on club nights are always awarded 40 "C" points each, with lesser placings earning lesser points on a sliding scale that depends on the number of tables in play. 100 C points make one "B" point.

B points and C points are also awarded for success at tournaments. For instance the winners of a 3B Junior tournament are awarded 3 B points each - equivalent to 300 C points. The lesser places are awarded a number of B points on a sliding scale. "A" points are really tough to come by, and are awarded at Open tournaments where you usually find yourself in competition with some formidable opponents. The winners of a 10A event get 10 A points with the lesser places awarded a number of A points on a sliding scale.


There are just three grades of player: Open, Intermediate and Junior. These are defined for tournament purposes. Although anyone can attend an Open tournament, Open players cannot attend Intermediate or Junior tournaments, and Intermediates cannot attend Junior tournaments.

In a Restricted tournament, Open and Intermediate players may be restricted to partnering Juniors although it is more common for Intermediates to be allowed to play together. Open-Intermediate pairings are often permitted. There are prizes for each pairing of grades.

Open: Any player with 100 or more Rating Points and / or 50 or more A Points. Or, from 2013, any Local Masters with five or more stars (see below).

Intermediate:Any player with 31 - 99 Rating Points and less than 50 A points. Or, from 2013, any non-Open Local Masters.

Junior:Any player with not more than 30 Rating Points and less than 5 A points.

Every new player starts their bridge life with the grade of Junior. As at 1st January 2012, 75% of the 14,472 registered players in NZ were Juniors, 17% were Intermediates, and 8% Open.

Rating Points and how your Grade is calculated:

At the end of each year, New Zealand Bridge processes all the A, B and C points earned by every player in New Zealand for the season just passed to work out the new tournament grades for the following year. As you can see above, Grades mostly depend on Ratings points. Ratings are based on previous history. The previous year's rating is depreciated by 20% before adding in the sum of A and B points earned in the season just passed. Ratings, and hence Grades, are re-calculated every year and hold for one whole season.

It is possible to slip back a grade after a poor season or a break from bridge but there are barriers that will stop you doing so. Five A points mean you can never be a Junior again, and 50 A points will stop you ever going back to Intermediate. Go to if you would like a fuller explanation.


A certificate is awarded by New Zealand Bridge to mark your success each time you achieve a new rank at bridge.

Just as in the army, there are different ranks of players. Everyone begins as unranked - Boot Camp, in effect. After that it's a one-way street of promotions based simply on the non-depreciated total of A and B points earned. The first step is achieving your Certificate of Proficiency for which you need an aggregate of 5 B points (equivalent to 500 C points). When you accumulate 20 B points (or 2000 C points) you become a Club Master and then a Local Master at 50 B points (or 5000 C points). Until you earn 50 A points, Local Master is the rank at which you will remain. But for every 50 additional A and B points earned, you will be awarded a "star". You can see how the rankings progress in the table below:

There are ten ranks accorded to holders of Master Points

Rank Sum of A & B Points (100C’s = 1B Point)

  • Unranked
  • Certificate of Proficiency 5
  • Club Master 20
  • Local Master 50
  • Provincial Master 100 (including at least 50 A Points)
  • Master 200 (including at least 100 A Points)
  • National Master 350 (including at least 175 A Points)
  • Life Master 500 (including at least 250 A Points)
  • Grand Master 1000 (including at least 500 A Points)
  • Silver Grand Master 2500 (including at least 1250 A Points)
  • Gold Grand Master 4000 (including at least 2500 A Points)

Each quarter, the top 10 male and female players for each rank across the whole of New Zealand is calculated and published in the Rankings Report on