12th World Bridge Championships Page 3 Bulletin 6 - Thursday 15 June  2006


Stories From The Championship

Alarms and Discussions - By Barry Rigal

The subject of alarm clocks at the bridge table comes up from time to time normally in the form of, "Wake up, partner." This can be an oral request, but the same result can be achieved by the play of the cards. At is happened, round four of the Rosenblum qualifying produced just such an opportunity.

Board 19. Dealer South. E/W Vul.
 ♠ Q J 8 5 4 3 2
2
K 7 2
♣ 8 3

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

Bruce Rogoff, East, was on lead against 4♠ (I would say it was the luck of the Irish that Gay Keaveney chose to jump to 4♠ after South opened 1NT, an undiscussed sequence, instead of using a Texas transfer, but since our teammates are Irish, I won't).

Rogoff led the ♣K and West produced the queen. A discouraging club would have produced a heart shift, so was something else required? After a little thought, out came a diamond. Declarer won the A and led a trump, but West won the ♠A to lead the ♣2 to East's ace for a diamond ruff. Our teammates played 2♠, making four, so this was a double partscore swing.

The man who was no Chagas - By Barry Rigal

Board 18. Dealer East. N/S Vul.
 ♠ J 9 5 3
A 9 8 2
Q 9 7 4
♣ 6

♠ Q 8 2
K J 6 4 3

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

WestNorthEastSouth
  Pass1
2NT35♣5
All Pass    

When Gabriel is at the other table, you had better have your best game on.

At my table, I declared 5. Marcelo Branco led a top club and shifted to a heart. What is the best play after winning the A? Obviously, the only danger is 4-0 diamonds, but can you protect yourself against it? I don't think so: I tried the 9 from dummy, but when Diego Brenner played low smoothly I did not have the courage to let it ride. In retrospect I was kicking myself not because I had missed a technical play but because my right-hand opponent had visibly twitched before passing 5, so at the vulnerability he had to be thinking about sacrificing. If that was so, the first round finesse was surely the indicated play. If that lost the spade finesse was virtually certain to work.



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