BRIDGE

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Front Page -

THE Coffs Coast congress, played re­cently at the Opal Cove Re­sort in Coffs Har­bour, NSW, is be­com­ing one of the more pop­u­lar events on the cal­en­dar, with close to 500 play­ers par­tic­i­pat­ing. Part of the rea­son is that it is equally ac­ces­si­ble to play­ers in Syd­ney and Bris­bane, but it is more than this. It is well run by the Coffs Har­bour Bridge Club and the venue is good, giv­ing the event a hol­i­day at­mos­phere. It also has one fea­ture that is rare th­ese days: de­cent prize­money. Per­haps there is a les­son there for oth­ers.

The reg­u­lar play­ers are also well pro­vided for with re­stricted events and there was a lec­ture from Ted Chad­wick and David Beauchamp. The one neg­a­tive I would add is the for­mat; why does ev­ery­thing have to be Swiss? But I’ll leave that to an­other day.

The pairs event was won by Sar­taj Hans and Tony Nunn, while Er­win Otvosi, Ken­net Chris­tiansen, Paul Gos­ney and Na­bil Edgt­ton won the teams. Otvosi and Chris­tiansen were also on last year’s winning team.

On deal one, Chris­tiansen made his 6NT with the help of a squeeze. His one club open­ing bid sim­ply showed a strong hand and Otvosi’s one di­a­mond showed 0-7 high card points. There was some un­cer­tainty about the mean­ing of the four no-trump bid, with Otvosi choos­ing to re­ply five clubs to deny hold­ing an ace.

West led a spade and Chris­tiansen made the es­sen­tial play of let­ting East hold the first trick. He won the spade con­tin­u­a­tion and ran West — pass pass all pass North — 1 5 East — 4 pass South 1 4NT 6NT his six di­a­mond win­ners. In the five-card end game, West was un­able to hold both three hearts and three clubs so Chris­tiansen was home. West came down to a dou­ble­ton heart so the A K 7 took the last three tricks.

On deal two, Edgt­ton-Gos­ney picked up a swing when Edgt­ton elected to open one club on the South hand. With only 8 HCP, notwith­stand­ing the good shape, it was an ag­gres­sive move to open at the one level. North’s one di­a­mond showed hearts. It is be­com­ing com­mon th­ese days to play trans­fer re­sponses to an open­ing one club. Two di­a­monds was fourth suit forc­ing. That is, it sim­ply said we are not go­ing to stop short of game. The two spade bid showed that the spades were five cards long. This meant the clubs would be a six-card suit; with only five the open­ing bid would be one spade.

You ac­tu­ally want to have the slam played by North to pro­tect the king of spades but there weren’t any prob­lems mak­ing six clubs, with both black suits be­ing well-be­haved. Paul Marston

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