Last board of a marathon
FRANK-N-ERNEST® GRIZZWELLS® BIG NATE® ARLO & JANIS® ZITS®
The final of the 1983 Bermuda Bowl world team championship in Stockholm was a marathon 176 boards between Italy (Giorgio Belladonna-benito Garozzo, Dano De Falco-arturo Franco and Lorenzo Lauria-carlo Mosca) and the United States (Michael Becker-ronnie Rubin, Bob Hamman-bobby Wolff and Alan Sontag-peter Weichsel).
With this board to be played, the Americans were ahead by 3 international match points because, on the previous deal, Belladonna and Garozzo had had a bidding misunderstanding and reached six spades off two aces.
One table finished well ahead of the other. Mosca (North) and Lauria had reached three no-trump after North opened one strong club, and South responded one no-trump, calling his hand balanced. Declarer had guessed well to cash the diamond ace, and had taken one spade, two hearts, four diamonds and two clubs.
In the given auction, Weichsel (North) also opened with an artificial one club, showing 16 points or more. Sontag (South) jumped to two diamonds, promising at least a five-card suit and 8 points. North then used two asking bids, learning that South had 2=2=5=4 distribution and 8-10 points. What did North do next?
North knew of a double fit in the minors, but the numerous spectators could see that five of either minor was doomed.
After an age, Weichsel passed out three no-trump. But might Sontag lose two diamond tricks? No, he started with the ace, and when East discarded a club on the run of the diamonds, South took 11 tricks. The United States had won by 413 imps to 408.