Although we only play duplicate bridge at the club we thought it would be a good idea to include a short section on contract bridge scoring so that it can be compared to duplicate bridge scoring.
On the left is a sample contract bridge score sheet and it can be seen that there is a horizontal line running right across the sheet. (The top line shown)
Only scores that go below this line are counted towards game and all other scores go above the line.
Supposing a pair bid and make 3NT, (which is a game contract scoring 100 points), that score would go under the line for that pair. Another line would be drawn under that 100 point game score showing that one game had been made as shown here.
Similarly if a pair bid and make a part score, (let's say two hearts as an example), then that part score would also go under the line, (in this case 60 points), and this score would count towards game so that pair would only then need 40 points for a game. Contrast this to duplicate bridge scoring where it would have no effect on game.
Any scores made apart from those actually bid go above the line such as penalties for undertricks or points for overtricks etc and these are all counted at the end. The "end" occurs when one pair has two games.
Once a pair have one game they become vunerable unlike duplicate bridge where vunerability is predetermined. In the example shown above the "we" side have made a game by scoring 100 points and a line has been drawn underneath their score. They have also made a part score of 60 and that also is entered under the existing line and goes towards their second game. The "they" side meanwhile have defeated one of the opponents contracts by one trick and this has earned them 50 points which goes above the line on their side and does not count towards game.
At the conclusion of the rubber, (when one side has made two games), all the points, above and below the line, are added up for a final score. It's quite possible to win the rubber and lose overall because of penalties suffered.