Another Regional is in the books
By the time this column appears, another hugely successful Bermuda Bridge Regional will be in the history books and hundreds of very happy players will have boarded their flights back to the US, Canada, and Britain. The weather co-operated and some chilly days kept players indoors, which is sometimes what we want, while other days were fine for the golfers and walkers to do their thing. The tournament always gives visitors many options as to how to spend their week and that is a major ingredient in the success of the event.
None of the above, however, would matter if the organisation falls down and that was never going to happen given the stewardship of our tournament chairman, Kathy Keane, and her hard-working committee.
Kathy now hands over the reins to Sheena Rayner after her three-year stint, during which time she has not missed a beat. Add to this the wonderful team of ACBL directors headed by one of our favourite sons, Sol Weinstein, the excellent Bulletins produced by Janet Evans, and all the ancillary events that go on around the actual playing of the cards and you get a tournament that sets itself apart from any other Regional in the ACBL calendar.
Attendance was again up on last year and hopefully we will get the tournament numbers back to where they used to be.
Local players have had many successes in the tournament but I am going to leave the results until next week’s column when all the results for the week will be in.
I was lucky enough on Tuesday and Thursday to have three of the leading players in the game - Gail Greenberg, Eddie Wold, and Jeff Hand - take part on my panels and the packed houses on both days appreciated the insights into the game. Expert lectures were given by Jade Barrett and Robert Todd and were enjoyed by those who attended.
It will take the local players a little time to come down from the highs of intense competition and get back to the more familiar surroundings of the Bermuda Bridge Club.
The tournament season starts this month and the players will have dusted themselves off and hopefully be ready to dive back into things.
I’ve constructed this week’s hand to get you thinking about thinking. Too often at the table we make bids or plays without visualising the hands and having a clear idea of what we want to achieve, and that is not a good thing.
You are vulnerable against non-vulnerable opponents and you pick up this 28 point rock-crusher:
LHO is the dealer and passes, as does partner and you are shocked when RHO opens 3 Diamonds, showing a weak hand and long Diamonds . You double for takeout and LHO now bids 5 Diamonds which comes around to you.
Not easy now. Partner is almost certainly void in diamonds so you could bid 6 Diamonds forcing him to choose a suit but in the end you settle for another double and that closes the bidding .
So, which Ace do you start with to get a look at dummy? None of them. This is where the thinking comes in. You have all the points, your tricks cannot run away other than to ruffs, so stopping the ruffs is what you must aim for - lead a trump, it is automatic.
The full deal
Declarer wins and leads a Club which you win and lead another trump - declarer can now ruff a Club in dummy but then has to come to you again and you lead a third trump. Declarer ends up with his 6 Diamond tricks and one ruff in dummy, down 4 and plus 800 gives you a near top score.
Let’s see what happens if you cash your Club Ace, see dummy, cash a Spade, and then try and cash three Hearts – declarer ruffs the 3rd heart and can now ruff 3 Clubs in dummy for just 2 down.
Whenever opponents sacrifice against me based on just a lot of trumps and distribution, I lead trump, no matter what my holding. Singleton, three small, Kx , Qx , anything at all but I lead trump. It usually works out really well.
PS Notice that on the above hand, East West are cold for a Heart grand slam but the Diamond barrage makes that difficult. That is what preempts are designed to do.
1. Edward Betteto/Joseph Wakefield
2. Geoff Bell/Kathleen Bell
3. Gertrude Barker/Alan Douglas
1. Elizabeth McKee/Stephanie Kyme
2. Judith Bussell/Tony Saunders
3. Patricia Siddle/Marilynn Simmons
1. David Sykes/Edward Betteto
2. Gertrude Barker/John Glynn
1. Alan Douglas/Jane Smith
2. Wendy Gray/Richard Gray
1. Carol Eastham/Nikki Boyce
2. John Kessaram/Patricia Rodrigues
3. Delton Outerbridge/Richard Keane
1. Heather Farrugia/Michael Farrugia
2. Judith Law/Louise Foden-Pattinson
3. Malcolm Moseley/Mark Stevens
1. Katrina Van Pelt/Kathleen Keane
2. Jean Johnson/Bill Souster
3. Gertrude Barker/Jane Smith
1. Michael Bickley/Dorry Lusher
2. Peter Donnellan/Lynanne Bolton
3. Janice Trott/Patricia Hayward
Thursday evening teams
1. J Fraser, R Hall/M Fraser, K Keane
2. D Pickering, J Luebkemann/J King, M Ferguson
1. J Johnson, B Souster/D Sykes, F Hupe
2/3. J Barrett, D Wood/R Simmons,
J Smith, G Barker/S Rayner, M Farag
1. Jeff Hand/Gail Greenbert
2. Dorry Lusher/Bea Williams
3. Caroline Svensen/Ellen Davidson
1. Alan Douglas/Jane Smith
2. Edward Betteto/Russell Craft
3. Charles Hall/Tony Saunders