1st World Youth Congress Page 2 Bulletin 7 - Friday 21 August 2009


MP Pairs qualification, 1st session

by Jos Jacobs and Marjo Chorus

Arrigo Franchi en Aldo Paparo were members of the Italian team that lost the final v. Japan-Czech on Wednesday. This should be an extra reason for them to try and do as well as possible in the pairs event. We follow them during the first session.

The brothers Eugenio and Giuseppe Mistretta were part of the Italian team that won the board-a-match Junior World Championship on Wednesday. Maybe, they have celebrated too much overnight, one might think but this was by no means the case, we could see when following them. Below, you will find a selection of the deals played by these two pairs. Italians are (in)famous for their rather high explosion rate if anything goes wrong. This was board 4:

Board: 4. Dlr: West/All
 ♠ A K J 4
A Q 9
8 4
♣ A K 4 3

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

Against Ekrem Serdar (North)’s 3NT, Franchi found the good lead of the ♣8. Dummy plays the nine and East the ten which is allowed to hold the trick. Paparo continues the ♣Q which declarer wins. Next comes a diamond which brings down the Jack, Queen and Ace. West now returns the ♣6 to declarer’s King. Diamonds are continued, West winning his King and returning the ♣2 which is won by declarer’s ♣3, to his astonishment. One overtrick but only 37 mp to Serdar-Ozer, just under average. Just making 3NT would have been worth only 14 mp. Franchi does not have any words, or rather he has rather a lot of words for his partner’s defence. Curiously enough, the Poles Zmuda and Krysa find exactly the same defence against 3NT by Eugenio Mistretta. The lead was the ♣7 to the nine, ten and Ace and, on lead with his first top diamond, North returned the ♣Q which held, followed by the ♣6. On the next board, we see a smooth defence by Eugenio against a briskly bid Polish slam:

Board: 5. Dlr: North/NS
 ♠ 7 4
J 2
K 6 2
♣ 10 9 7 5 4 3

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

WestNorthEastSouth
IglaEugenioMachnoGiuseppe
 Pass1♠Pass
2Pass3Pass
3 Pass4♣Pass
4NTPass5Pass
6All Pass   

Without any hesitation, Eugenio pulled the 2 out of his hand. Declarer later lost a spade trick as well for down two and 70 mp to NS. On board 7, Franchi-Paparo score a lot of mp because of an ill-timed double by North:

Board: 7. Dlr: South/All
 ♠ K J 10 8 7
10 5 4 3 2
-
♣ 6 3 2

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

WestNorthEastSouth
PaparoGundogduFranchiErkan
   Pass
1♠Pass1NTPass
2Pass2NTPass
3NTDbleAll pass  

Sehmus Erkan might well have led a heart, had North not doubled. Maybe, he should do so here as well because he’s only got one spade. He chooses partner’s suit, however and thus leads the ♠5. Franchi (“Everyone is very sleepy, I think”) calls for the Ace and plays a club to the Queen. South wins the King and returns a diamond. Ten tricks for the Italians and 74 mp. Franchi sings his favourite song: ‘It’s a wonderful world.’

On board 13, we saw a very fine defence by Eugenio:

Board: 13. Dlr: North/All
 ♠ 8 6
K 9
Q J 10 8 6 4
♣ Q 6 4

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

WestNorthEastSouth
DanEugenioDvirGiuseppe
 2PassPass
2♠Pass2NTPass
4♠All Pass   

North led the Q won by the Ace. Declarer drew three rounds of trumps and then led a club on which North contributed the Queen in a flash. Declarer ducked but he was already doomed as the club suit could no longer be exploited. When he later finessed dummy’s ten, South won the king to put the contract two down. This was good for 75 mp but the second undertrick cost EW only 5 extra mp’s.

By the way, the setting at this table was rather unique, we think. It would not occur very often that two pairs of brothers are meeting at a Junior World Championship. In this case, it were the Hershfangs from Israel and the Mistrettas from Italy. Another ‘ wonderful world’ for Arrigo Franchi on board 14:

Board: 14. Dlr: East/None
 ♠ A 8 7 4 3
K J 4
2
♣ K 9 8 3

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

WestNorthEastSouth
PaparoMilanoFranchiOjeda
 1Pass
1♠Pass1NTAll Pass

The lead of the J costs a trick. Declarer wins the King and plays a club to the Jack and King. North returns a spade, much to your liking when you are desperately looking for tricks from anywhere. ♠K thus wins a trick and the club return goes to South’s ♣A. South now cashes ♠Q and exits in clubs. Seven tricks for EW and 74 mp. The Mistretta brothers did much better on this board, one floor lower.

WestNorthEastSouth
DanEugenioDvirGiuseppe
  1Pass
1♠Pass1NTPass
PassDblePass2
All Pass    

Whenever you let the opponents play 1NT, you get a bad score, is a well-known adage in pairs’ events. We don’t know if it’s completely true but the Mistretta brothers certainly believe in it. With the clubs 3-3 eight tricks are always there but these 4-3 fits often are difficult to defend. West leads a diamond to East’s King and a spade comes back, for Queen, King and Ace. Declarer next cashes the ♠J and the ♣AK (well played, see board 18!) and continues on cross-ruff lines, ending up with an overtrick when East decides to ruff a spade in front of declarer with his Ace, which makes the club loser disappear. +140 was worth 69 mp to NS.

Board: 18. Dlr: East/NS
 ♠ 6 2
Q 9 8 7 5
Q 7
♣ A K 5 2

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

When Marjo wants to write down the name of the North player coming to “her” table, he smiles at her and shows his badge. What a name: “Sarper Uslupehlivan!” Sarper quietly waits till the name has been written down correctly and then says grinningly: ”OK, and now I want you to just pronounce my name!” By pure hazard, Marjo finds the right syllables to stress and a quite happy Sarper can concentrate on the bridge again.

WestNorthEastSouth
SofiosEugenioAnastasatosGiuseppe
  1NTPass
2♣Pass2Pass
2♠All Pass   

Paparo brought home this contract for 69 mp but against the Mistretta brothers, it was a different story. North led the ♣A after some thoughts; apparently he was already considering a trump lead which would have been devastating as the club position then remains unclear for declarer. At trick 2 he shifted to a spade which ran to the Jack and King. Declarer now tried a diamond to the King and Ace, which looks the wrong tempo. South returned a diamond for declarer to ruff. Next came a heart to the Jack (well guessed) and Ace and now, South put his partner in with the second top club to play another trump. Declarer cashed the K but not the ♣Q; he first ruffed himself back to hand with a diamond in order to ruff a heart in dummy. On this trick, South could discard his last club which enabled him to now ruff declarer’s winning ♣Q for one down. A slight misplay (see board 14) severely punished. One down brought the brothers 57 mp. Board 25 brings Franchi-Papano an incredible result:

Board: 25. Dlr: North/EW
 ♠ K J 8 2
Q 4 3
8 7 4 3
♣ 10 6

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

WestNorthEastSouth
PaparoRamirez ZunigaFranchiCalvo Apitar
 Pass1Pass
4All pass   

Franchi is softly singing into the reporter’s direction: “Where are all those spades gone?” Apparently, he is not rating his chances in 4 very high and is hoping NS can make something in spades. 4 is a hopeless affair but as long as you are not down yet, there is life, isn’t it? The club lead goes to Jack, Queen and Ace and Paparo next advances the J. It looks as if the NS count signaling system was out of order as the J is allowed to hold. A club goes to the King and a spade from dummy is taken by South’s Ace. He returns a club, ruffed high and overruffed with the Queen by North. He already has a heart in his hand to return but then thinks again and returns the ♠J. Paparo has no option but to run this to his Queen. Next, he ruffs his last spade with the Ace and loses only to the K. Ten tricks made and 74 mp to EW. ‘It’s a wonderful wonderful world,’ Franchi is humming again. On board 29, Franchi shows great judgement:

Board: 29. Dlr: North/All
 ♠ K 9 3 2
J
J 2
♣ Q J 8 7 5 2

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

WestNorthEastSouth
PaparoAndreaFranchiKilani
PassPassPass
1NTPass3NTAll pass

No Stayman on a 4-3-3-3 with honours in all suits. The spade lead goes to the ten, Jack and Ace. A heart to the King (and a raised eyebrow to North’s Jack) and a low heart to the seven! Now a diamond to the Queen and South’s King. Back comes a spade and North clears the suit. Delarer next plays a diamond to the ten and North’s Jack. North cashes his spade but on the club return South is squeezed in the red suits. Nine tricks and 51 mp. On board 30, the Mistrettas get a huge score when declarer misplays:

Board: 30. Dlr: East/None
 ♠ 10 6
A
Q 9 8 6 4 3
♣ K J 7 5

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

WestNorthEastSouth
OzgürEugenioOztürkGiuseppe
  11NT
2♣DblePassPass
2Pass3Pass
PassDbleAll Pass  

2♣ is a convention to show both majors when the opponents overcall 1NT but from time to time, it goes wrong. Had East bid anything over the double, EW would have finished one level lower. When he adopted the wait-and-see policy, all should still have been well as 3 can always be made. A club was led and a trump to the Ace came back, followed by a low spade. Declarer won the Ace and, rather than calling for a trump, went on minor-suit cross ruff lines ending up with an insufficient number of trumps in both hands and thus losing control to go two down for -300 and nearly 71 mp to the Italians.

At the end of the session, both journalists are treated the courteous Italian way. The players very politely rise and thank us for our moral support. Franchi-Paparo scored just over 60% and are lying 6th whereas the Mistretta brothers have no reason to complain too much about their 56.5%. Two more sessions to play.



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