The 1960 Spingold
(Page of 2)

I am drawing here on a report in the September, 1960 BW written by one Edwin B. Kantar.

As was normal in those days, the 1960 Spingold was a double-elimination event. Teams played 32-board matches, but you had two "lives." Sometimes the event came down to a two team final, one unbeaten team and a once-beaten team. In that case the once-beaten team had to win twice to capture the event. The other possibility was a three-way among once-beaten teams. This was decided by wins and losses, or by "quotient" if each team won one match.

The 1960 event (in Los Angeles) came down to a three team RR:

A Texas Team consisting of Bobby Nail-Mervyn Key, Curtis Smith-Robert Farris-Bobby Wolff;

The Goren Team: Goren-Sobel, Schenken-Leventritt, Ogust-Koytchou

The Rapee Team: Rapee-Becker-Silodor-Kay-Billy Grieve-Ralph Hirschberg.

In case any of you are too young to recognize some of the names, Nail and Key went on to represent the US in the 1961 BB, and Nail also was on the 1962 team. Curt Smith was one of the most feared opponents for many years. I know nothing about Robert Farris, but if Wolff reads this, maybe he can comment.

Harold Ogust and Boris Koytchou were frequent teammates of Goren, including in the 1957 BB. Grieve was a young player at the time; went on to partner Feldesman for several years before vanishing from bridge in the mid-seventies. Hirschberg was a well known NYC rubber bridge player. As I recall he was reputed to be sounder than Roth. I think the others need no introduction.

The RR results were : Goren beat Nail by 6 IMP, lost to Rapee by 2. Nail beat Rapee by 1. (These are "old IMP;" you could roughly estimate that an old imp was equal to two of the imps with which you are familiar.) So Goren (+4) won on quotient over Rapee (+1) and Nail (-5). There were two hands late in the Rapee-Nail match that I would guess Mr. Becker would like to have back even now. (I think I knew him well enough to call him Mr. Becker.) This is the second one:

North
J104
2
AJ10743
952
South
AKQ87
A1073
92
A4
W
N
E
S
1
3
P
P
3
P
4
P
P
P

The first trick started K-2-Q. How do you proceed?

North
J104
2
AJ10743
952
South
AKQ87
A1073
92
A4
W
N
E
S
1
3
P
P
3
P
4
P
P
P

The first trick started K-2-Q. How do you proceed?

BJ won the A, played Ace and ruffed a heart and led the A from dummy. West ruffed!! and returned a trump. At the other table Wolff also reached 4, got a club lead, and ...

led a diamond at trick 2! This preserved the A as a trick and there was no longer any way to beat the hand. Three aces and seven trumps.

The immediately previous board was perhaps even more costly. Well, no perhaps about it.

North
965
A762
A8763
A
South
A432
K1094
KJ
KQ4
W
N
E
S
P
6
P
P
P

I don't know the actual auction. It wasn't given in the article. It was reported that the other table had a Stayman auction to 4. It was also stated that Becker and Kay had an unopposed auction.

The opening lead was the Q. Becker won, crossed to the A, back to the K and cashed two clubs throwing dummy's spades. How would you continue?