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By In 46th World Bridge Teams Championships On 22nd August 2023

In this morning’s opening round the players had no time to draw breath, as the first two deals had slam potential:

6Cuori is eminently playable but after the auction starts 1Picche-2Cuori what should North rebid?
I found players rebidding 2Picche, raising to 3Cuori and jumping to 4Cuori. I could use up a lot of space discussing the merits of all those, but rebidding spades with such a poor suit would not be my first choice. Were the auction to go 1Picche-2Cuori-2Picche-3Quadri should North bid 3Cuori or 4Cuori? If North opts for 3Cuori should South settle for game or make one last try with 4Fiori? If North jumps to 4Cuori should South keep going, assuming that North is likely to have useful cards in both red suits?
If North raises to 3Cuori/4Cuori how should South proceed? (Here too you can decide, assuming 2Cuori is game forcing, which bid you would prefer to make with North’s cards.)
33 pairs got to 6Cuori, 9 of them in the Venice Cup and 8 in each of the other events.

As a general rule, deals where one hand holds all the aces can be awkward. You would also like to be in 6Cuori on these cards, but only 28 pairs across the four events managed it.
Helgemo and Grude had an excellent auction:

Having responded 2Quadri East was happy to splinter, after which it was easy for West to go on to 6Cuori.
It looks easy, but in the other room EW bid 1Cuori-3Cuori-3Picche*-4Fiori-4Quadri*-4Cuori-Pass. I’ll leave you to ponder East’s final pass – poor trumps but a potentially useful QuadriK. Perhaps one more effort with 5Cuori would be in order?

About the Author

Mark Horton
Mark Horton

Mark Horton British journalist and expert player, was Editor of Bridge Magazine 1995-2017 and now edits the online publication Bridgerama+. At one time, his business cards were inscribed: Have Cards will Travel, but following the death of his most famous sponsor, the Rabbi Leonard Helman, he has tended to concentrate on his writing exploits (in 2018 he had five books published!). Anyone wanting to discover how to lose at bridge on a regular basis (and pay for the privilege) should feel free to contact him. He currently lives in Shrewsbury with his wife Liz.