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Length of matches and probability of an upset

Is it always true that a longer match will favor the more skillful team? I offer a fantasy to suggest this may not always be the case.

The four greatest bridge players of all time (some of them resurrected) have been persuaded to play a team game against myself and some of my fellow club members.

The visitors are sportsmen who have no interest in a predictable massacre. They graciously agree to give up the advantage of their bidding skills by using computer-dealt hands on which the contract is bound to be the same at both tables.

A few preliminary deals for fun make it clear that the club-members need more help. The computer is further programmed so that each deal, with probability .05, will be a slam with 16 imps depending on the outcome of a two-way finesse (+16 or -16, each probability .25, no swing with probability.5). With probability .95, the deal will be a part-score with only an overtrick at stake--- unfortunately, the visitors consistently win 1 imp on each such deal.

My buddies and I have been given the choice between playing an 8-board match or 16 boards. What should we do?

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