American Team Wins Venice Cup in Indonesia

At the world championships in Bali, Indonesia, which ended Sunday, the American teams won two events and were second once.

In the Venice Cup, USA-2 (Disa Eythorsdottir, Janice Seamon-Molson, Jill Levin, Jenny Wolpert, Jill Meyers and Migry Zur-Campanile, with Sue Picus as the nonplaying captain) defeated England by 229 international match points to 220.3. The Netherlands was third.

The subsidiary Transnational Teams was captured by Mark Gordon, Pratap Rajadhyaksha, David Berkowitz, Alan Sontag, Jacek Pszczola and Michael Seamon.

USA-2 (Carolyn Lynch, Mike Passell, Roger Bates, Garey Hayden, Marc Jacobus and Eddie Wold, with Donna Compton the nonplaying captain) lost narrowly to Germany by 11 imps in the d’Orsi Senior Trophy. Poland finished third.

In the Bermuda Bowl, Italy overwhelmed Monaco by 84 imps. USA-1 (Kevin Bathurst, Kevin Dwyer, John Kranyak, Gavin Wolpert, Bobby Levin and Steve Weinstein, with Shane Blanchard the nonplaying captain) lost by 4.7 imps to Poland in the third-place playoff, a fourth-quarter rally just falling short.

The final session of the three premier events was exciting, except for the dull last two boards. USA-2 captured the lead against England in the diagramed deal, Board 61 of 64. At that time, England (Sally Brock, Nicola Smith, Fiona Brown, Susan Stockdale, Heather Dhondy and Nevena Senior) led by 0.3 imps, the fraction coming from the carry-over formula applied to the result of the earlier qualifying match between the two teams.

At the first table, the initial round of the auction was the same. Then Senior (South) rebid three hearts, which was a popular choice in the other events. This was passed out.

Meyers (West) led a low club and Zur-Campanile (East) put in the ten, confident that her partner was not underleading the ace and to find out who had the queen.

South took the trick with her ace and continued with the heart nine. East won with her queen, cashed the club king and shifted to the spade ten. Declarer took her ace and led the heart king. West won with her ace and cashed the spade king and diamond ace for down one.

In the given auction, Wolpert (South) chose the perfect moment to underbid slightly with her two-heart rebid.

Smith (West) led a club, and Brock (East) played her king. South won with her ace, led a diamond to dummy’s jack and played a heart to her jack.

If West had now cashed the diamond ace, perhaps she could have read her partner’s deuce as a suit-preference signal for clubs and underled her queen to receive a diamond ruff. But that would not have defeated the contract.

Instead, West, thinking it was likely that her partner had the spade ace, cashed the club queen and diamond ace, then switched to a low spade.

South won with her jack, cashed the heart king to drop the queen and claimed ten tricks.

Plus 100 and plus 170 gave 7 imps to USA-2 and a lead it never lost.

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