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All comments by Olivier Collard
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French Cup: 32-board KO match

We reach the slam in the right denomination (i.e ♣ instead of ♥). Twelve cold tricks, but since we are slightly the underdogs and I assume it's gonna be a close match, I decide to try and make an overtrick…and don't notice that East discards on the second round of trumps (black on black of course). One down. In the closed room, they played in hearts (8 trumps w/o the queen of trumps instead of 9 solid trumps in clubs) and made it. 17 away
Then on the next hand, the vicious discarder (someone I like very much), probably moved by my dismay, floored an even colder slam to hand back the 17 IMPs.

“L'histoire ne repasse pas les plats”
The second half was X-rated and we won by 50 IMPs or so…
Oct. 24, 2015
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Talking about 7NT with a wandering ace, a teammate of mine might have set a record. Twice in our common career, she had to lead against that contract with an ace in hand. She's never found a red card in her box so far!
The first time it happened, I was partnering her. Next day, she phoned me and said “I really don't understand why you were so upset, 1040 or 1090, it's 14 IMPs anyway”

The second time, I wasn't playing with her. We were comparing scores when she said “100 to us”.
“What were they in?”
“7NT”
Without a word, I stood up and walked to the IMP board
“Yeah well done , 1540 or 1640, it's 17 IMPs all the same”
Oct. 23, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 24, 2015
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I have another redouble story.
Around 2005, Mixed Teams “Honneur” (2nd category, very broad range from eternal intermediates to mini-advanced and future advanced/experts just passing by before playing in greener pastures).
First round, first hand (in the closed room). My partner and I explore a heart slam, stop in 5, which I make after a defensive slip.
We start adding up the points and I say “Board 1, 650 to us”
“2200 to us”. I instantly think “2210” and wonder how they could have bid (let alone made!) a grand while we had a shot at the small in the other room. Had they played EW too??
This is what happened: In my seat oppo (incidentally my partner in the jack-king anecdote above) opened 2♣, his partner relayed in 2♦, he bid 3NT, showing a game-force major two-suiter (yeah…don't ask) and partner called 4♦, preference for spades…(don't ask again)
Now fasten your belts. South doubled and West redoubled to show the ace of diamonds. His partner started thinking and eventually applied the old “I don't know what to do, so I pass” principle. 4♦ redoubled went 4 off (and it is said that South chastised North for losing a setting trick in the process!). 2200+650 for the good guys.

About one year later…
The “unlucky” protagonists, the girlfriend of the male player (who was the one who'd given me 5♥ in the closed room, it's a small world) and yours truly were chatting on BBO. There's a night club called “Club 1900” downtown and someone suggested going there after the tournament and the dinner next Saturday.
A few seconds later, this appeared on the screen
“ I dunno. Maybe Valérie* would rather go to the ”Club 2200"

*Not her true name, of course.
Oct. 23, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 23, 2015
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Looks like a HH vs. Papa hand
Oct. 23, 2015
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Maybe they had played against the aforementioned ladies before :D
Oct. 22, 2015
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Haha. Looks like a parody of French politics.
Can't wait to see Aubry President. He may lead us to hitherto unexplored heights
Oct. 21, 2015
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Another story from my club.

Once again playing against elderly ladies, in harness with my regular Mixed Pairs partner.
We were EW and white vs. red.
My LHO opened 1♠ and it went pass pass. Now my partner must have something, so I balanced on rather flimsy values. My partner bid 1NT and it proved enough to buy the hand. I made my way to the coffee machine and upon my return, it transpired that, after a somewhat approximative defense, my partner had gathered 7 tricks.
“Strange indeed, we only had 15 hcp between our hands”. She then turned to the putative responder and asked “You had more than enough to bid, didn't you?”
- “Oh well I had 11 points, but I couldn't bid. You see, I had a spade singleton”

Fearing the worst, I opened the scoresheet…and was not disappointed. There was a neat column of -100, every other NS pair had gone one down in 3NT.

“Sorry, I tried hard, but couldn't find an eighth trick” my partner said with a smile.
Oct. 21, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 21, 2015
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Fabuleuse, celle-là :-D
Oct. 21, 2015
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Been listening to some Wagner lately, Sarah? (Woody Allen inside)
Oct. 21, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 21, 2015
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Playing at my club, I'm declarer in 4H against two ladies in their early 70s. I've lost a trick, trumps are cleared and I have to pick up the diamond suit with Q1098 in the closed hand and Axxx on the table. I decide to play for split honors and lead the queen, getting the jack from LHO. Wondering why she didn't lead her singleton, I shrug and call for a small diamond. Small from RHO. I lead the 10…and sure enough there comes the king!
My partner puts his hand in front of his mouth and asks if he can go out for a smoke. Maintaining a straight face, I let him go and end up with twelve tricks.
Not surprisingly it is an intergalactic top. RHO writes down 480 for EW under a bunch of 450s and says “Unlucky, partner, to have played this hand against Olivier”
Oct. 20, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 21, 2015
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The only hand I saw on BBO was extremely strange. Declarer was in a hopeless 3NT and GD pitched all his spades but the queen. Then, when declared played a spade towards A10, AM rose with the king, crocodilizing GD's queen and promoting the 10, East's ninth trick.
Henri Schweitzer (AKA Ritong) asked for confirmation and was told it was the real course of events…
Oct. 20, 2015
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I just hate all this “right thing” stuff.
Sounds dreadfully fascistic to my ears. It's like “Think the right way or be dubbed ”enemy of the people“ and suffer the consequences”
Oct. 20, 2015
Olivier Collard edited this comment Oct. 20, 2015
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Mr. Goded raised the real issue : bridge is not self-sustainable and relies mainly on the money of physical persons, who invest the aforementioned bucks for different reasons, the main being the boosting of their ego.

Maybe it's time for WBF and NBOs to seriously PR their way to corporate investors. The chess world is far from perfect, but top players don't have to sell themselves to make a living. Chess creates no more riches than bridge, so there's no reason why it should not work for bridge.
If they fail, then the current feudal plutocratic system will endure, for worse or worse.
Oct. 20, 2015
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You mean ENCA is as weird as FRCA?
Oct. 20, 2015
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Nope.
Oct. 20, 2015
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Sounds like Jessica is Dana Scully :D
Oct. 19, 2015
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Damn. I was rather pleased with myself and you ruined it all :-(
Oct. 19, 2015
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Come come Andreas.
Everybody seems to find the Monaco masquerade absolutely normal.
I've been asked, on another thread, “Why would you call the Monaco project farcical?”
Some people have no sense of the obvious…
Oct. 19, 2015
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@Chris Harris

Seems our teachers sell the whole package :-)

More seriously, I've noticed on BBO that the bidding of the North American intermediate and fake advanced players is nothing short of dreadful.
On the other hand, they are, on the whole, quite honest about their level, whereas in France, you have loads of experts/advanced who can hardly tell a diamond from a club… (not to mention a country where almost all players are experts and suffer from redoublemania ^^)
Oct. 19, 2015
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Haha, that sounds like us :-p
Oct. 19, 2015
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