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To the bidders go the spoils

John Gowdy
Canada's Open team got off to a slow (!) start in the Bermuda Bowl, but has shown a lot of grit to fight back into the mix.  Arno Hobart-George Mittelman ˆ both with WBF medals in their trophy cases ˆ started a new partnership and came to Portugal with high expectations.  Their system, based on Canape with Polish overtones, has produced some solid results, but system will only take you so far at this level.  Look at this competitive auction:
Hobart faced the first problem, holding
S KQJ43  H A743  D ---  C 10832
Red against white, he saw RHO open 1D.  Some might consider double, but Arno bid 1S.  LHO made a negative double, partner bid 4S, and RHO pushed on to 5D.  What now?
The meek pass ˆ who wants to save red against white?  But the brave? Hobart bid 5S.  Not a call everyone would make, but one that can pay big dividends.  Partner is vul, so has great shape (we hope) and this may produce, on its best day, a double game swing.
Let's now look at Mittelman's hand:
S A109862  H 8  D KJ97  C KQ
He had taken the low road with a heavy 4S, but when partner pressed on to 5S he visualized the hand.  Partner clearly has five or six spades to the king, and must (should!) have a side ace. Surely he also has a diamond void, so 6S must be cold, and George bid it.
Moral: if you want to win, bid - bid the cold 22-point slams!  The two hands:
S A109862 
H 8 
D KJ97
S KQJ43 
H A743 
D ---
C 10832