Good performances at the Sectional

  • Counting up: a Bermuda Bridge Club youth player in action

    Counting up: a Bermuda Bridge Club youth player in action

  • Figure 1: Dealer North E/W Vulnerable

    Figure 1: Dealer North E/W Vulnerable

  • Figure 2: The full hand

    Figure 2: The full hand

Bridge results for the week of October 7, 2019

Monday afternoon


1, Charles Hall/Molly Taussig

2, Marilynn Simmons/Patricia Siddle

3, Margaret Way/Stephan Juliusberger


1, Sancia Garrison/Jane Smith

2, John Burville/Edward Betteto

3, Magda Farag/Sheena Rayner

Tuesday evening junior game


1, Elena Marshall/Colin James

2/3, M Silver/D Silver, W Emery/L Manders


1/2, A D Rayner/J Cook, D Wood/M Zuill

Wednesday morning


1, William Pollett/Linda Pollett

2, Gertrude Barker/Jane Smith

3/4, E Davidson/J Shaw, E McKee/M Way


1, Edward Betteto/Sancia Garrison

2, Charles Hall/Molly Taussig

3, Lynanne Bolton/Heather Woolf

Thursday evening


1, Diana Diel/Stephanie Kyme

2, William Pollett/Robert Todd


1, Alan Douglas/Jane Smith

2, David Sykes/Edward Betteto

Friday afternoon Sectional

1, William Pollett/Molly Taussig

2, Elizabeth McKee/Diana Diel

3, Edward Betteto/Margaret Way

Friday evening Sectional

1, Peter Donnellan/Lynanne Bolton

2, Elizabeth McKee/Linda Pollett

3, Jane Smith/Alan Douglas

Saturday morning Sectional

1, Elysa Burland/Heather Woolf

2, John Burville/Margaret Way

3, Elizabeth McKee/Diana Diel

Saturday afternoon Sectional

1/2, J Glynn/M Taussig, M Way/D Diel

3, David Sykes/Edward Betteto

Saturday afternoon Sectional Junior game

1, Kirsty Pollett/Salayah Stange

2, Duncan Silver/Marion Silver

3, Ahzjanai Smith/Daque Davis

Sunday Sectional team game

1, W Pollett/L Pollett, E McKee/D Diel

2, H Woolf/L Anderson, G Correia/R Hall

3, T Saunders/C Hall, M Way/M Novakovic

Monday afternoon Sectional

1, Charles Hall/Tony Saunders

2, Joyce Pearson/Gloria Rego

3, Edward Betteto/Alan Douglas

Monday evening Sectional

1, Peter Donnellan/Lynanne Bolton

2, John Glynn/Jane Smith

3, John Burville/Elizabeth McKee

The 2019 Bermuda Sectional is in the history books and the Bridge Club can be proud of putting on another super event which seemed to be enjoyed by all those who took part. The table count was a bit disappointing, at 85 over the four days, compared to the record 100 tables last year.

That probably had a lot to do with half a dozen regulars being off the island during the event.

Both Peter Donnellan and Jack Rhind reported that the atmosphere and camaraderie was excellent throughout and that may have been somewhat linked to mini bottles of Prosecco being given out as section prizes.

Jack reported that there were no really contentious rulings to be made, and Peter asked me to send his thanks to all the helpers and volunteers that make these events possible.

The results are at the end of the column and the surprise for me was the absence on the winners podium, over the seven events, of some of the big names that often dominate the results.

Five players had two wins, some with different partners: Peter-Donnellan/Lynanne Bolton, Diana Diel, Bill Pollett and Molly Taussig.

There were some other good performances that caught the eye.

It was good to see two of the new youngsters take the 99er prize, when Kirsty Pollett and Salayah Stange, came out on top of a good field ahead of Duncan and Marion Silver and Ahzjanai Smith and Daque Davis.

Also eye-catching was the performance of Heather Woolf, Lorna Anderson, George Correia and Richard Hall in the Open Teams.

They finished just behind winners, Pollet/Pollet/McKee and Diel, with 108 vps compared to the winners’ 115 and both teams won seven of their eight matches.

The Woolf team won the B section from the Bolton/Donnellan/Burville/Viotti quartet, and the team of Claude Guay-Sharon Shanahan, Lisa Ferrari and Betsy Baillie won the C section with a creditable four wins.

The final Master Point table for the event, shows Marge Way taking the Robert Todd Trophy for the most masterpoints with 18.85, just ahead of Elizabeth McKee on 18.26 and Diana Diel on 17.03.

Finishing fourth and taking the Masterpoint title in the B Strata was Lynanne Bolton with 13.50 masterpoints, and, Lorna Anderson took the C strata with a healthy 8.19 masterpoints.

Congratulations to all these winners. With the Sectional completed, the action at the Bridge Club rumbles on.

Now that the season is in full swing, there is a STAC week from October 21-25, with an extra game for 499ers on Monday the 21st, the Open Pairs Championship takes place with both sessions being held on Saturday November 2, and the Junior Teams Championships on consecutive Tuesdays, November 5 and 12.

Sign-up sheets are at the Club for both of these events, so get your name down.

This week’s hand was posted on BridgeBase Online, with the question ‘how would you play six Spades on the lead of the Heart 4?’.

Figure 1: Dealer North E/W Vulnerable

I looked into the chat forum on the hand, as the solution had not been posted, and it was interesting; most of those on the forum were beginners/intermediate and a number of them said “easy win” with the Heart Ace, draw trumps and take the Diamond finesse.

Even if it loses, you can throw away dummy’s losing Clubs on the fourth and fifth Diamonds.

Interesting! Throwing losers away is fine, but not if you now don’t have any trumps left in dummy, to ruff declarers losing Club. So, let’s look at it again; it looks as if you have to draw trumps before tackling Diamonds, there is no reason not to do so.

It also looks as if you have a certain losing Club so everything seems to rest on finding the Diamond Queen … or does it?

Look at the Heart suit — what if West has the King of Hearts?

You actually have nothing to lose by playing the Heart Queen at trick one. If it wins, you have a parking space for your losing Club on the Heart Ace and are taking the Diamond finesse for an overtrick.

Even if it loses, the Ace of Hearts will still take care of the losing Club and now, you are back to trying to find the Diamond Queen to make the slam. (Figure 2)

So playing the Queen at trick one gives you a combination of two 50 per cent chances of the Heart and Diamond finesses, or a 75 per cent chance of making the hand.

Playing the Heart Ace at trick one leaves you having to get the Diamond guess right, only a 50 per cent chance; which would you rather have?

Some of you that are newish to the game might ask “but would a player ever lead away from a King against a slam?”.

That is a good question, and I think the answer is that beginners to advanced players usually won’t, but advanced plus to experts often will, as you are usually looking to establish one trick before declarer knocks out the one Ace the defence often has against a small slam.

In either case, is hand putting in the Queen of Hearts at trick one, gives you an extra chance as you are just trading a heart loser for a Club loser.

Remember though, that this only applies against a small slam. Against a grand slam, you choose the safest lead you can find, without giving away a trick, and that is more often than not a trump.

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Published Oct 19, 2019 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 18, 2019 at 11:20 pm)

Good performances at the Sectional

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