Linda Lee — My personal bridge blog

US versus Turkey the exciting conclusion to this World Mind Sports Game match

When we left this match the USA had just regained the lead 18-15 in a see-saw battle and we were about to play Board 28.  Put yourself in Chris Compton’s shoes.

 Chris Compton

Vulnerable against not in second chair you have

♠ 107
♥ AK6
◊ AJ1042
♣ KJ3

Goksu on your left opens an 11-15 notrump.  What do you do?  You play (copied from their convention card)

Vs. 1NT: DBL= PEN, 2♣ = strong, 1 Major;2◊ = both Majors

2♥/2♠ = limited NAT;

If you are interested follow this link to their convention card:

Okay we have stalled enough.  It is your turn to bid.  Do you

a) pass

b) double

c) bid something else

What did Chris do?


If you chose double you are right.  Chris made that bid.  I admit it is a tough situation and I think many would not bid, but you have a suit to lead.  1NT doubled isn’t game and these 11-15 notrumps are pesky.

Now Bedir sends it back with a penalty redouble and it is passed back to you.  This is your moment of truth.  Do you run like a rabbit or sit like a man!

Compton passed.  This is not clear to me but I have the advantage of hindsight.  Partner will not remove this without a good suit.  After all he has no idea what you have.  1NT doubled isn’t game but 1NT redoubled is game.  Bidding 2◊ though could be worse.  You are vulnerable and you know that you opponents have a lot of the remaining high cards.  Still if partner hates diamonds he can remove to a major.  He knows you don’t have a great suit or you would have played 1NT redoubled.

The hand is cold and unless you lead the ◊J or ◊10 declare makes an uptrick as happened at the table.  The score if you don’t happen to have a calculator is -560.  I calculate that 2◊ doubled is down 1 or might just make if the defence slips up a bit.

  ♠ 107  
  ♥ AK6  
  ◊ AJ1042  
Rodwell ♣ KJ3 Meckstroth
♠ Q842   ♠ AKJ5
♥ Q1085   ♥ 94
◊ Q7   ◊ K96
♣ A107   ♣ 9642
  ♠ 963  
  ♥ J732  
  ◊ 753  
  ♣ Q95  

As you can see, Goksu (Rodwell) actually had only 10 not the 11 he promised.   Rodwell passed and Kandemir opened 1NT which was passed out.  Meckwell defended efficiently to beat it two treats and salvage something.  The USA lost 8 imps.  Turkey had regained the lead 23-18.

Things didn’t get all that much better on the very next board.

Bob Hammon

In the closed room Bob Hammon opened 2♠ in third chair and bought it there for a  reasonable score of +110  This time the action was in the closed room.

This time you are going to match your skills with Eric Rodwell.

♠ K10
♥ AQ942
◊ A82
♣ 976

All vulnerable Kolata opens 1♠ in third chair.  What do you do?  Do you

a) double

b) bid 2♥

c) pass

d) make another bid

What did Rodwell do?


He doubled. I am not crazy about this action with a five card heart suit but I know some people hate overcalling these bad suits.  Here is what happened next.

Rodwell Kandemir Meckstroth Kolata
1◊ pass pass 1♠
DBL 2♣* 2♥ 2♠

2♣ was a transfer to diamonds.  Rodwell now bid 3♥ and that seems reasonable but doesn’t it overstate the hand a bit?  You are now about to go for a number.  Here is the rest of the auction and the whole deal.

  ♠ J3  
  ♥ KJ8  
  ◊ K97643  
Rodwell ♣ 83 Meckstroth
♠ K10   ♠ A86
♥ AQ942   ♥ 10653
◊ A82   ◊ Q10
♣ 976   ♣ KJ54
  ♠ Q97542  
  ♥ 7  
  ◊ J5  
  ♣ AQ102  

When things are going well for Meckwell these thin games make but sometimes they get doubled and go for a number. There score of -800 was a 12 imp loss and they were suddenly down 35-18.  Board 30 was a pass out good for 2 imps for the US and a chance to catch their breath.

Turkey scored 4 more on a part score hand.  To lead 39-20 with one board to play.  The USA managed to get back 11 of them to finish 39-30 for Turkey.

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