Bridge - The Scotsman 22/07/2013

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The main event of the European Open Championship in Ostend was the Open Teams, won by a Polish team: Mazurkiewicz, Jassem, Wojcieszek, Jassem, Gawrys, Tuszynski

After a thrilling 1 imp win over Isrmany (Birman, Ilan and Ophir Herbst, Padon, Piekarik, Smiroov, who took bronze) they beat Breno (D’Avossa, Garozzo, Intoti, Lanzarotti, Manno, Zaleski) by just 2 imps in the final.

Playing strong no-trump, five-card majors, most would open 1D with the South hand. When North took no action over 1S, South was pre-empted out of the auction by East’s 4S bid. Should North now re-open with 4NT, showing a long club suit with some diamond tolerance? Not an easy bid to find, and the Italians went quietly.

Against 4S, North led a club. South won, switched to king and another heart and took a heart ruff, then exited with a spade, waiting for his diamond trick for two down, +100.

The Polish Club system opens 1C with all weak no-trump hands. When East bid 1S, North was able to show his great club length by jumping pre-emptively to 4C, so Gawrys bid on to 5C. He ruffed the spade lead, drew trump in one round and claimed. (The winning line is to eliminate spades and hearts, then lead a diamond from dummy, just covering whatever card East plays: West is endplayed.)