An open event with plenty of swings
By the time this appears the 2017 Open Teams Championship will have been decided as the second session was last night.
Leading after the first session is one of the two leading contenders on paper, the team of Jean Johnson, David Sykes, Marge Way, Edward Betteto and Fabian Hupe, with three wins and 67 points.
Sitting not far behind, in a pretty remarkable performance, are the team of Ellen Davidson, George Correia, John Luebkemann and Linda Abend also with three wins and 59 points — super stuff from this foursome in this company.
Third are Harry Kast, Tony Saunders, Judy Bussell and Charles Hall on 49 and sitting in fourth are Alan Douglas, John Burville, Elizabeth McKee and Diana Diel.
The event is really wide open with a lot of swings available in eight board matches, so stay tuned! Results next week.
Coming up next is the Non Life Master Pairs on November 30 and December 7.
This week's hand is a fun one and is a play that comes up really often at the table, but not many players see the play or execute it.
Dealer West E/W Vulnerable
The Bidding was over quickly — West passed, North opened 1 Diamond, East overcalled one Heart and South bid 3NT.
West led the Jack of Hearts. East played the Queen and declarer ducked.
East continued with the Ace of Hearts, followed by the ten. Declarer took this with the King and paused to assess his chances.
He could count only eight certain tricks and so needed to develop another one in either Diamonds or Spades.
Declarer's first move was to cash the Ace, Queen and King of Diamonds.
East's low Spade discard was a disappointment, but not unexpected. At this point, the contract seemed to depend on the Spade finesse.
However, this declarer disliked taking finesses whenever there was a chance of gaining a trick by other means.
He now cashed the Ace, Queen and King of Clubs. When both defenders followed to all three Clubs, East was marked with an original 3=5=2=3 or 2=5=2=4 shape.
This was in fact the situation with declarer having won seven tricks.
East had a good Heart suit to start with but declarer thought that his overcall made it just a bit more likely that he also had the King of Spades
So, instead of trying the Spade finesse, he exited with his remaining Heart — East could take the nine and eight of Hearts but then had to lead away from the King of Spades — nine tricks and a fully deserved top for this declarer.