Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Final Picks

The complete Butlers for the Bermuda Bowl semi-finals have not been posted yet, but they will be at:

Only one Italian pair, Lauria-Versace, is finding their form. They also have a 20 IMPs disadvantage due to the USA 1 carry-over from the round robin slaughter . Hamman and Soloway are in fine form, and while Meckwell have struggled a little bit at times, they are super dangerous going down the stretch. So the call should be USA 1. Yet my gut feel is that the Italians, especially Fanunes, will finally rise to the occasion, and find the pizzazz to win to it.

Here are the complete Butlers for the semi-finals of the Venice Cup:

Not a big surprise here - both Germany and France are doing well. This will be a very close match, and the 16 IMPs carry-over advantage wins it for France.

The Butlers are also ready for the Seniors semi-finals:

Lasut and Manoppo are running well, and it's their time -> Indonesia wins a tough battle against Rose and the boys, who start with a whole one IMP carry-over.

Hampco vs. Meckwell

Greco-Hampson are playing a very close version of Meckwell Precision, and both pairs were sitting EW for the final segment of the semi-final. On board 2 we had a chance to see how style or judgement can make the difference, as opposed to system
2 ____ K854
West _ J975
NS __ T97
_____ 84
73 ________ QJ962
K _________ Q42
AKQJ65_____ 4
QJ65 ______ AK93
_____ AT
_____ AT863
_____ 832
_____ T72

Both Easts, Greco and Meckstroth opened 1S, and both their partners responded 2D, 2/1 Game Force. Now both Easts rebid 2NT. Rodwell, West at one table, raised to 3NT and there was no way to beat the contract, and it turned out that declarer made five, +460. At the other table, Hampson, West, rebid 3C with a 6-4 shapely hand. East raised to 4C, and they ended in 5C, off 3 top tricks for -50 and 11 IMPS to USA 1. Same system, but different choices.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005


Board 3 of the second segment of the USA 1 vs. USA 2 semi-final offered some insights into the Meckwell style.

3 ____ K43
South _ Q63
EW __ A9873
_____ 95
AT9 _______ 875
72 ________ KJT9
J6542______ KQ
A82 _______ KQT6
_____ QJ62
_____ A854
_____ T
_____ J743

In fourth seat Meckstroth, East, opened 1D, since they play 15-17 there and Meckstroth decided not to upgrade vulnerable opposite a passed hand, since little chance of game. Rubin, South, came in with a light takeout double, even for a passed hand, but he was not vulnerable. Rodwell, West bid 1S, which according to their notes is a transfer to notrump (redouble would show hearts, 1H would show spades). Now North, Ekeblad decided to follow the transfer directions, and bid 1NT. Meckstroth doubled this, Rodwell doubled North's runout to two diamonds, and subsequent scrambles to 2H and 2S were also doubled. When it was all done, that was +500 to Meckwell and 9 IMPs.