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For bridge hands of interest

Mind sport

IMG 0777Try this quick quiz. What are the five “mind sports” that feature in the World Mind Games?

The 2011 World Mind Games were held in Beijing. The bridge section featured men’s and women’s events for teams, pairs and individual. Holland won the Men’s Teams and China won the Men’s Pairs. The other four events were won by the USA.

Besides bridge, the mind sports are chess, drafts, go, and xiangqi (Chinese chess).

Here is a deal from the Men’s Individual:

It seems that South, Ulf Tundal, has four trump winners (as they are sitting over declarer’s honours) and the HA to win at least.

He led the DK, won by dummy’s ace. Malinowski then called for the H10, covered by the queen, king and ace. Tundal now switched to a spade.

Malinowski won in dummy with the SA and ruffed a diamond, played the HJ and ruffed a heart, ruffed another diamond, cashed the SK and led his last heart. This was the position: 

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Timeless distribution from 2008

The 2008 Spring Nationals Open Teams were won by the team of Ron Klinger of Northbridge. They narrowly defeated a team headed by another Northside player, Helen Horwitz.

The following board is reported by bridge maestro Peter Gill. Gill and Klinger had been teammates at the World Championships earlier in 2008, but Gill partnered Horwitz in this event. 

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Preempt openings

These hands feature preempting decisions from the finals of a past World Championship.

High-level suit openings are weak or preemptive, showing a long suit and typically 6-10 HCP. As a guideline, a Weak Two shows a six-card suit, a 3-level preempt suggests a seven-card suit, while an eight-card suit (or other shapely hand such as a 7-4) is often opened even higher, up to game level.

Another important factor is vulnerability. When not vulnerable, be happy to preempt at least three tricks higher than you expect to make. Vulnerable, you may be a trick more cautious.

From the semifinals, here is a classic preempt:

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Important bidding choice

Sue Allen and Mizuho Okamoto won a past Wollstonecraft Pairs from Pauline Gumby and Warren Lazer. Surprisingly, this hand was an absolute top...

Your vulnerable opponent opens a weak 2S (suggesting a good 6-card suit and 6-10 HCP). You are not vulnerable - what would you do with these cards?

S J6
D AK5 
C J96

       Pass   2S     ?

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Sneaking through second hand

Today’s deal comes from a past Trumps Spring Teams Congress. Your partner opens 1S and you have this hand:

S J64
D JT65

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Utilising length

Plan the play in 5D as West, after the defenders cash two rounds of spades then switch to clubs:

WEST          EAST
S 96          S 87
H 52          H AK876
D AKQJ4       D 987
C K762        C AQ5   

Read more: Utilising length