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All comments by Shäné Blänchärd
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Pratar Engelska snalla, eller svenska? Dansk ar for svært for mig. :)
Sept. 23, 2013
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Catch partner with a doubleton in either minor and this rates to be -1, very hard to see us beating 4s, but even if we were, -100 feels like cheap insurance. If I'm going down more than that, I'm fairly confident they were making it.
July 13, 2013
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Congratulations to Benedicte and Sylvie. I am so happy for them and could not agree more with the above description.

I do, however, feel that maybe there is someone a little more deserving this year… Debbie Rosenberg self-reported a scoring correction that cost her a national championship title. Debbie is already well-known among her friends, peers, and competitors as a tremendously ethical player and kind opponent. Though anyone who knows Debbie would not be surprised by her actions, they still deserve recognition and this award seems the perfect channel for it.
Dec. 14, 2012
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I think partner could still have the Q of clubs more(18 hcp) or the Q of hearts instead of J(17 hcp) and rebid 2d. Both of those hands would make slam really good, but with the actual hands slam is not so great, is it? So if partner's bidding on with this, we certainly do not have to encourage him by bidding 4d…
Oct. 19, 2012
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I agree that 4 diamonds sounds like a slam try, and that's why I decided that if I was pulling 3NT, it would be to 5 diamonds, not giving my partner a chance to bid an ambiguous 4M or even worse, RKC. As far as the decision whether to pull or not, at the table I was able to construct several minimum 1-5-4-3's, as well as 2-5-4-2's that would play far better in 5d than in 3nt. Of course there is always fear that we have 3 unavoidable losers, but my thinking was that we would undoubtedly need to develop some long suit tricks in one of our 5cM's, and if partner has only one club stopper and is 2-5-4-2, we would have to do so without losing the lead in 3nt. The exception being something like: x, AKxxx, Axxx, Kxx, where we have 9 rippers in NT (on a club lead), but that hand hasn't gone down yet in 5d; and in fact, you might take 11 in diamonds with trumps 4-1, while 9 in NT with the same split seems very unlikely.

I did bid 5d, and my partner bid the fastest 6d you've ever seen after the lead of a club to the ace, and a club returned to my partner's K, he thought for what seemed like 15 minutes and proceeded to play the hand carefully by combining his chances for a claim on 3-2 trumps and 4-3 spades via dummy reversal and falling back on the heart finesse when trumps went 4-1. +1370, Thank you partner :)


His hand:
x, AKJxx, AJxx, Kxx.
Oct. 19, 2012
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Sounds to me like partner is 4-(3/4)-(5/6)-(0/1). Opposite the diamond AQ and spade K slam will have play. Add another useful card-the diamond J, spade J, club K or even a 6th diamond– and slam becomes great.

If my reasoning is sound, I am not quite sure how to proceed. The 2 most important things about my hand are the heart shortage and the Kxx of diamonds. I do not know what the best sequence of bids are to convey this to partner. Bidding 5c allows me to bid 5h over 5d allowing me to show both of those controls, but my partner still has no clue how valuable his diamond holding may be.

Bidding 5d shows my diamond K, but I'm nervous that I'm denying a club control, and I'm even more nervous about the meaning of partner's subsequent 5h bid (either last train with club control, or heart cue). And even if I can divine the meaning of his 5h bid, now what?

5h is another possibility but this sounds to me like exclusion BW, how could I possibly be forcing to the 5-level without controls in the minors? If this could somehow mean that I have controls in both minors and heart shortness, this would be an awesome bid :) Unfortunately, partnership agreements don't work like that.

The bottom line is I have a 14 count, and while this auction has dramatically improved my hand, I do not own a slam force. For that reason I think its best to make one try that is most likely to get partner to make the right decision. My Kxx of diamonds is going to be the crucial source of tricks on the hand, and I'm therefore planning to cue bid the diamond K and sign off thereafter. With the right diamond holding and a high spade honor, partner can certainly figure out to bid a slam.



Oct. 3, 2012
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Not sure why I thought she was a passed hand, sorry. Much more sympathy for the double now, but I still wouldn't… Anita should have doubled the second time, and you'd have a whole new problem… probably right to take a shot at 2d now that she couldn't overcall 1M.
Sept. 27, 2012
Shäné Blänchärd edited this comment Sept. 27, 2012
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Board 20: I disagree that the club ace lead is indicated by this auction. Even if it's a lock that partner has shortness, this lead can still be disastrous. In the event that partner has slow red suit winners, scoring our rough might still concede a trick.

Board 14: Your partner is a passed hand and made a takeout double of 1d, which should promise nothing more than diamond shortness and an expectation of making a part score opposite a fit. She certainly had her bid you certainly do not. Double with 1087xx of trumps is begging to go -180 and deters your partners from making good bids for fear that they get punished like this. If that result wasn't enough deterrent, reading this article should seal the deal.
Sept. 26, 2012
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Though I'm far from certain on this, I remember hearing that Warren Buffet's sole contributions to this event is the funding for the trophy and of course his name. When I heard this, I was also told that funding comes primarily from the pockets of very generous bridge enthusiasts, namely (in previous Buffet cups) Roy Welland. So there goes the $44 billion argument. I'd be interested to hear from someone who actually knows how this event is funded….
Sept. 13, 2012
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Agree, Vugraph has been beyond pathetic.
Sept. 12, 2012
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I do not understand why you find double so sickening, I limited my hand when I overcalled 1s and I am now making a TAKEOUT double to show that I have a max 1s overcall with extra playing strength. This is by no means a penalty double and in fact, I'm quite content with my AK, AQ, singleton diamond, (indicating that this suit might not be the source of tricks that declarer had anticipated) and if partner chooses to pass, I have a great opening lead and I would feel quite confident about my prospects of beating 4h/ achieving our best possible result on this hand.
Sept. 6, 2012
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Oops, will edit.
Aug. 6, 2012
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Anytime partner has a hand without the spade K (i.e. the spade A or spade Q) as his stopper and a diamond fit, and/or honor doubleton in hearts, game will have play, let alone 3 of a red suit. ATx, Qx, ATxx, JTxx Looks like a normal 2NT bid to me. As does: Axx, xx, AQxxx, Jxx. With the first your -200 in 2NT and I'm + 140, 170 or sometimes even 620. The second hand you're again -200 in 2NT and I can throw my hand on the table +110. Ever seen partner have this for 2NT: A10xx, QT, ATxxx, Jxx. I'm sure you'd be content to play 2NT down a couple when 4H is better than 50%.
Aug. 3, 2012
Shäné Blänchärd edited this comment Aug. 3, 2012
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3. to elude; deprive of something expected
July 25, 2012
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What fool let you make slam? :)
May 15, 2012
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Qxxx, AJx, AKJxx, x…. Perhaps slamming opposite 4/4 from partner, but now ducking in to best game. Also, opener can certainly have 3 for his/her 3 bid. And especially now that partner couldnt jump to 4 which he/she would most certainly do with 4 spades and heart shortness, it is safe to assume that partner is not short in hearts or does not have 4 spades, or both.
May 10, 2012
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Hey Ish.

You've played, and had tremendous success, with many different partners here in the NABC's. It is undeniable that a practiced partnership has a tremendous advantage in world class events and yet you seem to defy this maxim with each new success. Off the top of my head, you have won the LM pairs(with Justin Lall), come in 2nd in the platinums(Thomas), lost the Vanderbilt final last year(Les and Bakshi), and won this year(Thomas) all with first time partners. First of all, bravo! Secondly, how do you explain achievements such as these in light of “partnership experience” or lackthereof?

Thanks,
Shane
April 12, 2012
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Best bridge article I've ever read! Please continue :) Maybe you can even ghost write some of my adventures with Dad…
Feb. 24, 2012
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It seems obvious that the most important consideration has not even been discussed: how fast did my partner double? ;D
Nov. 12, 2011
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