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Epic Finish in Seamon USA2 Final
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Going into the last segment, the WEI team (Hongji Wei, Yewen Fan, Nian Si, Yichen Yin, Chang Liu, Che Shen) clung to a 7-IMP lead over the DHIR team (Arjun Dhir, William Zhu, Samuel Amer, Greg Herman, Burke Snowden).  The first 14 boards saw bundles of IMPs change hands, including 7NT-X making off a cashing ace, but with no change to the match state: WEI still led by 7.  Then, the final board:

North
AQ3
5
AKJ1084
AKQ
South
J1084
AK982
Q7
J2
W
N
E
S
7
P
P
P

With 23 HCP opposite 11, slam was a certainty, but the WEI team overreached a little to 7 by South, uncontested. This contract is ostensibly on the spade finesse, but declarer was able to get a count on the hand.  East started with 2=5=3=3 shape so East was the sole person guarding hearts. At trick 12, the position was:

North
AQ
South
J
9
W
N
E
S
7
P
P
P

East has been squeezed down to 1 spade and the high heart.  Finesse or drop?

Declarer, perhaps feeling that the set had not been going his way, went for the drop (anti-percentage with spades known to have started 4=2).

The full hand:

West
K972
J4
52
87643
North
AQ3
5
AKJ1084
AKQ
East
65
Q10763
963
1095
South
J1084
AK982
Q7
J2
W
N
E
S
7
P
P
P
D
7 South
NS: 0 EW: 0

Down 1, -50. The other room reached 6NT, making 7 on the spade finesse, so DHIR won 14 IMPs to win the match by 7.

 

The winners, left to right: Snowden, Amer, Herman, Zhu, Dhir

Congratulations to team DHIR for winning one of the most thrilling finales in the history of Vugraph bridge!

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