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All comments by Avon Wilsmore
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Agree 100%

Until I spent time in the US, I had never once heard “Play”, as an instruction from declarer.
Dec. 12, 2017
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If the 1965 R-S affair interests you, Kleinman's essay is essential reading, in my opinion.
Dec. 12, 2017
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Hand One:
Their winners are five clubs, two spades and the ace of hearts. A heart lead provides the ninth trick.
Dec. 12, 2017
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Yes, one board was a part-score battle, the other was much more about defense and dummy-play. Great article.

The following year, IIRC, there was a related BRP article in Bridge World - we followed the previous year's winners, board-by-board.
Dec. 12, 2017
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Tell me, Michael, is this a moose, for a three-level intervention?

1 P 2 ?

K 7 5 A A Q 10 3 2 J 9 5 2

1 was 5CM Standard, the event was one year after the event described above.

You are vul vs not.

Dec. 11, 2017
Avon Wilsmore edited this comment Dec. 11, 2017
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Tomorrow's article has two opening lead problems.
Dec. 11, 2017
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Opening leads? Only one more sleep to go.
Dec. 11, 2017
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It may well be an excellent agreement, but it is not one that N-S had.
Dec. 10, 2017
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It is true that 9 tricks were the limit.
Dec. 10, 2017
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The double of 3any was plain takeout, by their system notes.
Dec. 10, 2017
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“… expert players in 1955 had all learned bridge before the Work point count became widely popular. Any hand with three honor tricks was considered an automatic opening bid”

Reese was the expert's expert, truly one of the greatest of bridge intellects. In Play Bridge With Reese“ he writes about an opening bid made by a rubber bridge partner (from memory):
”It would not occur to me to open that hand as dealer, vulnerable. For far too many players nowadays, life is bounded by the number of points they hold….“

The hand was one that would not pass comment now; a flat 12 with a couple of aces.

”Also, in 1955, a jump preference in a minor was forcing to game. “

R-S did not live in America. I have no doubt that the vast majority of English Acol players played it not-forcing in 1955, 1965 and 1975.

”Truscott's case ultimately unpersuasive…

For a brilliant analysis of R-S at the 1965 Bowl, see Danny Kleiman's “Bridge Internationals, Famous and Infamous”.

I think Kleinman is a markedly superior analyst to Truscott, and 20 pages of Kleinman is worth more than Truscott's whole book (with the exception of the Gerber Evidence from 1960)

Kleinman ends:
“I find Reese’s Story of an Accusation to be a masterpiece of deception, containing erroneous representations of
vulnerability conditions on at least two boards, many unsubstantiated characterizations of bids as “normal” when they aren’t, unnecessarily vague language, and frequent non-sequiturs.”
Dec. 9, 2017
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“Why You Lose at Bridge”, S J Simon.
Dec. 9, 2017
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Jan: Yes, that deal is not in Truscott's book. I did not say that it was.

If you have read Truscott's book, it is, in my view, somewhat ingenuous to comment on how poorly people bid back in the old days.
Dec. 9, 2017
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We are not on the same page at all.

Truscott makes many references to R-S deals and actions long before 1965. 1955 *is* discussed in the book.

Truscott discusses, and gives examples, of deals where a range signal may have taken place.

If you read Play Bridge With Reese, you will have every reason to suppose that Reese was an advocate of sound, solid opening bids. I have spoken to a teammate of Reese's; he confirms this.

Opposite a Reese opening bid, Schapiro had a clear game-force. What particular call, on some particular round, that one or the other should have chosen, is of no interest to me.

What is of interest is a peculiar call *that just so happens to suit partner's values and/or shape*. This “know partner's hand” is a red-herring.

Take, for example, the psyches of the US Bowl team, 1957-1959.

They psyche often, and a clear pattern emerges:
Their partner had no damn clue as to what was going on. They bid too much, bid too little, double the opponents in cold contracts, go for numbers… all exactly as one would expect. It's the Keystone Cops at the table.

Now take a look at Jais-Trezel's psyches. Poetry in motion. Torvill & Dean take up bridge. Yes, they did not always end in the double-dummy par contract. Why would they?

What did happen was that *partner never got it wrong*.
Dec. 9, 2017
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“The actual call made was 2(!)… Yes, south (Schapiro) passed! North (Reese) had 11hcp”

I gather you have not read Truscott's “The Great Bridge Scandal”.
Dec. 9, 2017
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Ken:

http://www.bridgebum.com/giorgio_belladonna.php

I find it hard to believe you don't recall this deal.
Dec. 9, 2017
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However, the pair concerned were using Roman Jump Overcalls.

3 over 1 would have shown hearts and clubs.
Dec. 8, 2017
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You may indeed suggest this.

I am reminded of an Alfred Sheinwold column. A lady wrote in to say:

Dear Mr Sheinwold,

I was playing bridge recently at my friend's house, and I was dealt a Yarborough! May I ask for a redeal?

Wondering.


Dear Wondering,

You may indeed ask for a redeal. You may also ask for a million dollars in gold bullion. You are as likely to get one as the other.

AS
Dec. 8, 2017
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The opponents were playing 5CM, weak NT.
Dec. 8, 2017
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No, nor Michaels.
Dec. 8, 2017
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