Bridge: Up for a challenge?

Lost track of the deadline in the 2-way against procrastinator and only finished 6 of 16 boards. He won those 6, 3-1. I reissued the challenge.

CHO had a terrible set in the match against NN, where I lost by 8.

If CHO hadn’t left me in 1C X after 1C - P - P - Dbl - P - P - ? with S-8xxxxx H-Jxx D-10xx C-x, where I went for 1700, then I would have won. Defense has 12 top tricks in clubs, with me having only xxxx.


OTOH, had I gone down only 1100 as NN did on the same auction, I would have won. Defense can always take 12 tricks, but defense didn’t figure it out, as he played.

I beat AA by 11.
I reissued both.

Big win for NN in the regular 5-way, with +25.25, a margin over 10. A win, not by 10, for oirg in the Declare Only, with +8.50.

I win 2-ways vs procrastinator (+10), NN (+3) and AA (+2). I reissued them all.

I win 2-ways against procrastinator (+6) and NN (+19).

In a no-swing hand against NN, both declarers made only 9 tricks in 3NT when they could 100% (against any distribution) guarantee 10 tricks against any lie of the opposing cards with no chance of 11 if they didn’t play for the sure 10.

I reissued both of those.

Easy wins in the group challenges. procrastinator (+34) in the regular; me (+21) in Declare-only. I reissued both.

I win all three 2-ways. +4 vs NN with no swing bigger than 5. +3 vs procrastinator, with one lucky (?) swing to me for 4S +1 vs 6S -1. 6S has no play on our hands, but I have a strong 6-5 hand and partner invited game. He could have a hand that would make 6 cold. This time we didn’t even have one that would give us a finesse.

Then +33 vs AA. That 6-5 vs procrastinator may have been an omen, since there was lots of distribution in this one. Board 1 I’m 0=1=6=6, with KQxxxx of diamonds and KQJxxx of clubs. Partner opens 1S!
That’s a surprise, but I think my 2D is automatic (not AA’s choice tho). Partner jumps to 3S! Not what I was hoping for, but I decide to bid 4C, hoping for a 4D preference. (Would a pessimistic 4S from me have been better? System notes do confirm that 4C is a suit, not a cue bid). No 4D preference; partner bids 6S. Idiotic, IMO, with S-AKQJxx H-xx D-Ax C-Axx. 6C is excellent; 6D a favorite; 6S has no play on a heart lead. Sure enough, my RHO leads the heart K. Then shifts at trick 2, when he sees that dummy. Absolutely insane, even for a bot.

Board 2 I guess wrong. RHO opens 3S at favorable vul (for them). I have S-J10x H-Q9xx D-AJ10 C-AKJ. Maybe with a flat hand I should pass. Maybe at this vul I should overcall 3NT. Maybe I should double. What do you think? Pass works best. 3NT second best. AA and I both doubled, found partner nearly broke. He was down 400 in 4H. I went down 500.

Board 8 was another 6-5 hand, a push as we both chose the successful contract. We have S-void H-KJ7xx D-Kx C-AQJ109x. Partner opens 1S, we bid 2C, he bids 2S, we bid 3H, he bids 3NT. This doesn’t have to be right, and if we someone knew about partner’s 98x of hearts we would wish we were in hearts, but we pass. Good move, as partner has both minor kings and the spade ace, giving us 10 tricks. Hearts are 5-0 offside, so 4H goes down, as does 5C.

I reissued all three.

procrastinator wins both group challenges. The regular with +10.25, the Declare-only with +11.34.

I reissued both. In fact, the regular was reissued yesterday. I’ve completed most of it.

I think you earned that swing against me. I bid 6 without thinking too hard, but later started constructing hands, and while pd could have a hand to make it good, it is pretty anti percentage I think now.

Gaps in completion: I won the regular 5-way with +20, a margin over 10, but only 3 people finished it. AA also did not finish our 2-way, which may have been good for me. I misclicked and passed partner’s 1S opening bid with 9 HCP. Partner had 18 HCP, so we would have reached game. The hands didn’t fit well, but the lie was exceedingly friendly and the game would have made.

+6 vs NN. -9 vs procrastinator. Self-destructed on last board against procrastinator. Thought about trying for slam, settled for 4H. After seeing dummy and the opening lead, wished I had bid 6. Spent time thinking about best play for 6. Wasn’t sure, but remembered it was imps so difference between making 5 and making 6 would be only 1 imp, so just went with it. Should have thought harder about it being imps. Big difference between making, which had 100% available and down 1, which I achieved when diamonds were 6-0 and spades 6-1.

I reissued the 2-ways (against NN completed and reissued yesterday) and the 5-way. The Declare only 5 way goes until tomorrow.

procrastinator romps in the declare-only group challenge, completed by only 4, with +24.67. Reissued.

Some swingy boards in the 2-way with NN, which I won by 2.

Embarringly I let them make an awful game that could have been easily defeated. Should it have been? Probably. NN beat it. I didn’t know it was as awful a contract as it was, but OTOH there was little hope of setting in otherwise.

Also two questionable weak twos.

I have S-Jx H-J9x D-QJ109xx C-xx. First seat, nonvul against vul opponents. Am I a man or a mouse? I opened 3D, which I’m sure would have some company in serious competition (though more would bid 3D if it had a stiff spade). NN opened a more pedestrian 2D. Nothing wrong with that. His worked, as his side ended up playing 3C making, while I defended 3H, also making.

Then S-QJ9xxxx H-Jx D-xxx C-x. Second seat both vul. RHO passes. OK, I really really want to bid 3S, but can’t see it vul. And really really hate opening 2-bids with 7 card suits. But would really really hate to pass with those spades. So I open 2S. It works. Opps can make 3NT or 4H, but play only 3C against me.

Then a disaster for each of us, for a push. Our bidding and play was impeccable, but the result terrible. I even gave some thought to achieving a better result, also ridiculous.

We hold S-Jxxx H-KQ10x D-xx C-Axx. Both vul. We pass, and RHO opens 1D in fourth seat. Surely no one would pass now, and we both doubled. Redouble by LHO, P, P to us. OK, we now wish we had passed, but too late for that, so 1H. Double by LHO, P, P to us. Now what?

1S might be better, but it also might not. So we both passed. -1100. Blame CHO. He held a 4=1=3=5 shape, and elected to stay in our 4-1 fit instead of either 8-card black suit fits.

How did I even consider doing better? I asked myself, before bidding 1H, “what would a bot do?” The answer, from painful experience, is that a bot would pass and defend 1D XX, apparently thinking that his partner’s pass of the redouble suggests a desire to defend. If by chance partner does want to defend 1D XX my hand is great for him. Here, he doesn’t want to defend 1D XX and it’s going to make 3, but that’s only -980 instead of -1100.

I reissued the challenge.

On the diamond one, think 3 is reasonable but would have opened 2. If I played a system where weak 2d was not available, would open 3.

On the spade hand, agree with not opening 3. Might pass or might open 2, depending on my mood.

As a passed hand, would have doubled 1D as well. Opposite a human, would sit for 1Hx. Opposite a bot, might try running (you may recall I tried running from a double contract in one of these challenges, and went for sticks and wheels, so perhaps I don’t have the best judgment in such situations).

I squeak by in the regular 5-way, with +22.75, barely ahead of NN’s +20.

Then I beat AA by 11, all on board 1 when the bots defended very badly to let me make 4H. OTOH, CHO should IMO have let me play and make 3H, which would still have let me win. CHO has S-J9xx H-x D-10xxx C-Jxxx. The bidding to him (opps silent) is 2C - 2D - 2H - 3C - 3H. Per the system notes, 3H is non forcing, but he thought he was worth 4H. Maybe he counted 2 points for his singleton. 4H basically needed hearts 3-3. Or LHO trying to cash a second spade, with J9xx in dummy, and me playing the spade Q on the first round.

Also a win by 28 vs procrastinator. I reissued them all.

Just rethought that. That SHOULD have been the bidding (in which case 3C would have been a second negative, I think). The actual bidding, non vul, had CHO’s RHO making a takeout double of 2H. Absolute insanity. Entering a strong 2C auction at equal vul with S-AK10x H-xx D-AKJx C-xxx. Hand more oriented to defense than offense, and you know you are outgunned. Ridiculous. (And why CHO decides he should show J10xx of clubs over the takeout double? Bananas).

Oops. SW49 was supposed to reissue his challenge as Declare-only, but it is a regular challenge. SW49 would have done better if it were Declare-only.

Yes, NN romped with +21, a margin close to 20. SW49 was demolished, as expected, over 40 behind NN. I reissued it. Almost, by mistake, making it a regular challenge again, but changed to Declare-only.

+39 vs NN. Reissued.

procrastinator wins the group challenge with +21.50, not quite a margin of 10.

In 2-ways, I lose to NN (-13), beat procrastinator (+13), beat AA (+18). All reissued.

That 2-way had an embarrassing hand, where I went down in a game I should not have. Would have still lost by 1, but still frustrating to make that kind of mistake.

Those things happen. And you ran into a great defensive duck by a bot, defense that would never be found by most defenders in an ACBL club game.

Unlike (from an earlier match)

where I failed to consider bad breaks. Mistakes that don’t usually don’t cost, but can cost a lot.