12th World Bridge Championships Page 2 Bulletin 2 - Sunday 11 June  2006


Opening Moves

By Mark Horton

The entry list for the mixed pairs posted on the Internet at www.ecatsbridge.com is 16 pages long and on every one of those you can find the names of partnerships that might be regarded as potential winners.

So selecting a pair to follow in the opening session is a haphazard affair, rather like following one of the Co-ordinatorís racing tips. Given that I am typing this introduction at 08.40 you will see that I already have my apologies ready in case my selection, a new partnership from Bulgaria, fails to deliver the goods.

Dealer North; E/W Game
 ♠ A J 9 8
A J 9 3
J 10 2
♣ 8 3

♠ 7 4 3
10 5 4
A 4 3
♣ K J 9 7
Bridge deal
♠ K Q 10 2
Q 7
Q 9 8 6
♣ Q 5 4
 ♠ 6 5
K 8 6 2
K 7 5
♣ A 10 6 2

WestNorthEastSouth
PantoKarakolevCapalPopova
 1Pass1
Pass2All Pass  

Well, if all the boards looked like this one it would be a very dull tournament. West led a trump solving one of declarerís problems (although itís hard to see how declarer could ever go down on any rational line of play - but see Brian Seniorís article!) and declarer won in hand with the eight and played a spade to Eastís ten. The club switch was ducked to West, and declarer won the trump return in hand, played a spade to the ace, ruffed a spade, ruffed a club and ruffed a spade. West could overuff and play a club but declarer ruffed and had to score a diamond trick for a regulation +110.

Dealer East; All Vul
 ♠ K 6 5 4 2
9 8 7 6 4
7
♣ 9 2

♠ Q J 10 9 7
A K
A K J 5
♣ A J
Bridge deal

Q J 5 3
Q 10 8 4 3 2
♣ Q 10 5
 ♠ A 8 3
10 2
9 6
♣ K 8 6 5 4 3

WestNorthEastSouth
PantoKarakolevCapalPopova
  PassPass
2♣*Pass2*Pass
2NTPass3♣*Pass
3♠Pass6Pass
7All Pass   

When the tray came back to reveal Six Diamonds West was slightly surprised. His decision to advance a Grand Slam was based on the premise that East must have a void and if it happened to be in diamonds partner would obviously return to spades.

South tried a hopeful ace of spades, but declarer was soon claiming all the tricks. Its hard to argue with success, but Six Diamonds looks a little over eager, especially since West might have had considerably more in spades given the bidding.

Dealer South; None Vul
 ♠ K J 9 7
3
A 10 7 4
♣ 10 9 4 3

♠ 10 8 3 2
A 8 4 2
Q 6
♣ A J 6
Bridge deal
♠ 6
K Q 10 7 5
K 9 8
♣ K 8 7 5
 ♠ A Q 5 4
J 9 6
J 5 3 2
♣ Q 2

WestNorthEastSouth
CaricKarakolevMatijevicPopova
   Pass
Pass1♠22NT*
4All Pass   

2NT was a spade raise and with East now known to be short in spades West bid game. There was nothing to the play and declarer recorded a painless +420.

Dealer West; North/South Vul
 ♠ Q 9 5
K 5 4
10 8 4 3
♣ 10 8 5

♠ A K 8 4 2
A J 9
K
♣ Q 7 4 3
Bridge deal
♠ J 6
Q 10 8 7
Q 9 7 6
♣ A J 2
 ♠ 10 7 3
6 3 2
A J 5 2
♣ K 9 6

WestNorthEastSouth
CaricKarakolevMatijevicPopova
1♠Pass1NTPass
2NTPass3NTAll Pass

Another regulation game for East/West saw South lead the three of hearts, second and fourth. North won with the king and returned the suit. Declarer won in dummy and played a club to the jack and king. South switched to ace of diamonds and a diamond and when the clubs proved to be 3-3 declarer cashed out for nine tricks.

Dealer North; All Vul
 ♠ A 5 3
A Q
10 3 2
♣ A K Q 5 4

♠ J 8 7 6 4 2
7 6 5 2
J 9
♣ 2
Bridge deal
♠ K Q 9
9
A K Q 8 7 5
♣ J 8 3
 ♠ 10
K J 10 8 4 3
6 4
♣ 10 9 7 6

WestNorthEastSouth
AudibertKarakolevGermainPopova
 2NT33
56♣All Pass  

How would you describe Westís Five Diamonds? Imaginative is one possibility. Whatever it reaped a rich reward when North, not unreasonably placing South with at most one diamond bid a slam. East meanly cashed her two diamonds for a massive result.

Dealer East; None Vul
 ♠ A 10 8 6
A K Q
Q 8 2
♣ A 9 7

♠ K Q 9 4 3

A 7 6 3
♣ Q J 8 3
Bridge deal
♠ 7
J 8 7 6 4
J 10 5 4
♣ K 6 4
 ♠ J 5 2
10 9 5 3 2
K 9
♣ 10 5 2

WestNorthEastSouth
AudibertKarakolevGermainPopova
  PassPass
1♠DblePass2
Pass2NTAll Pass  

East led the seven of spades and declarer took Westís queen with the ace. He cashed the ace of hearts, disclosing the 5-0 break, took a second heart and then played a spade to the jack and king. West switched to the queen of clubs and declarer ducked, won the next club and exited with a club to Eastís king. The switch to the jack of diamonds ran to declarerís queen and he cashed the ace of hearts before exiting with a diamond. West could win and cash a club but then had to play a spade giving declarer the last two tricks and his contract Ė and a very good score.

Not an outstanding set of results for North/South, but to use a football metaphor it was early doors and they were over average by the end of the session.



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