Venetian Congress, day 5 extra

Submitted by English Bridge Union on
Pre-Congress Pairs Winners Pauline Cohen and Elizabeth Barnard. They are stood in front of a banner advertising First for Bridge and smiling at the camera

An extra blog today from the Venetian Congress, this time written by one of the Swiss Pairs winners, Irving Blakey (pictured, above left):

Irving Blakey, winner with Joy of the Swiss Pairs, writes:

This is our first overseas bridge holiday since the dreaded Covid pandemic and whilst not the 40-50 tables as previously, a very acceptable company of 16 tables superbly (and cheerfully) run by Chris and Linda Benneworth.

To win any event, one requires an element of good fortune coupled with a concentrated effort of good play and defence. It was certainly a challenge to stay at table one throughout! A final score of 87% is something rather special for us.

Chris Benneworth picked out a couple of hands for me to report. The first was Joy bidding the hand to 6NT in order to protect her spade holding after her left hand opponent had bid spades.  Discovering that our diamond fit did not contain the DQ she bid the hand to 6NT.

{dsnone AQ Q986 J986 AK5; KJ1098 4 Q43 J1092; 54 AK5 AK105 Q873; 7632 J10732 72 64 }

On the lead of the JC and with the aid of the (fortunate?) Diamond finesse, after testing the heart suit Joy threw East in, in the end game, with the 4th club for the spade end play.

{dsnone AQ10642 A532 - 764; J53 K7 8654 KJ85; 9 J984 QJ73 AQ32; K87 Q106 AK1092 109 }

Joy could have decided to treat her hand as single suited but made the (good/fortunate?) decision to treat the N hand as a major two suiter after West had opened a weak NT. I liked the look of my hand (after passing the South hand in first position) and bid 3 Hearts, which she duly raised to 4. On the lead of a top diamond from west, and with quite a lot of high cards to find, I decided to pitch a club from dummy rather than weaken the trump holding in dummy by ruffing the diamond. West then switched to a club clearing up the position of one black King. I led the 9H, duly covered by the 10 and ducked. Winning the next club with the Queen, I led J Hearts, covered(!?) with Q, Ace crashing the King. Returning to hand with the 8H and with the aid of the now marked Spade finesse and the (fortunate?) 3/3 spade break, emerged tired but happy with 11 tricks.

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