Bridge players love going on about system. Some want every bid to have a conventional meaning and some want to play ‘naturally’. Personally I like a few conventions but not so many that judgement becomes redundant.
Norway held its weeklong Bridge Festival in Fredrikstad this year which kicked off with Mixed Pairs. It was won by Helen and Espen Erichsen, one of the few married couples who play together and stay together! 181 pairs played a three-board Swiss format and on hand 82 (out of 90) Helen used just the right amount of system and judgment to help win the gold medal:
Helen was sitting in the South seat and opened a strong 2♣. West stuck his oar in with 2♣ and Espen (North) passed showing 6+ points. East raised his partner to 3♣ probably hoping to muddy the waters. Helen passed, which was for takeout, as she was too good to bid 3NT opposite a known six plus points in dummy. Now North bid 4♦ and judgment took over from system: Helen could place her partner with five diamonds to the Queen and an outside Ace and correctly judged to bid 6NT, protecting her ♣K. She made 12 tricks when the clubs broke giving her and Espen 67 out of 90 matchpoints, most of the room being in 6♦ by North which goes off on a spade lead.
Good job Mrs E.
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