A good hand but awkward call
Brian Tracy, a motivational public speaker and self-development author, said, “Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.”
At the bridge table, you will occasionally be in an awkward position, maybe even one that you have not faced before. Then, how do you decide what to do?
Look at today’s South hand. It is strong and you are hoping to have a lengthy, informative auction with your partner, when annoyingly East opens three spades — yes, spades! What would be your call, given that only your side is vulnerable?
It is not obvious what to do: pass, double, three no-trump or some number of diamonds. Each could be the winner.
At the table in the 2016 Yeh Online World Bridge Cup, Shih Juei Yu (South for the Yeh team) overcalled three no-trump, which would be a popular choice. Then, though, the auction ran out of control. Wang Ping (North) bid four hearts, South corrected to five diamonds, North continued higher with six clubs, and South tried six diamonds. West lost patience and doubled, eventually collecting 800.
At the other table, East passed as dealer, Agustin Madala (South for Lavazza) opened one spade, West made a debatable takeout double, Benedicte Cronier (North) responded two clubs, East unwisely advanced with two hearts, South made a takeout double, and North happily passed. This also went down three, minus 500, giving Lavazza 16 international match points en route to the title.
Misfits are miserable.