Posted by Rakesh Kumar on Monday, 21 July 2014 at 22:51
I'm playing in my first Seniors' event, which ought to mean I'm getting old, but it's hard to tell as I'm having too much fun!
Rounds 1-5 of the Seniors' Butler (playing the same boards as the Open and Women's Stage 2 and the ANC Swiss Pairs) were certainly interesting, even if partner and I have thus far covered ourselves in something rather more odoriferous than glory ...
Round 1, board 10 (E dealer, both vul) was an interesting test of slam bidding. In the Seniors' Butler, 8 of 14 pairs reached the grand slam in hearts (however, not all of the bidding was entirely scientific!) and exactly half of the pairs in the Open Stage 2 and ANC Swiss also did so, but only 3 of 10 in the Women's.
That was a moderately distributional hand, but later in the day I got the distinct impression that someone had once again clicked the the "weird distributions" button on the dealing machine software. We were back in the land of 8-card suits (one each in Round 2 and Round 5) and, sitting North, I had two 6-5 hands and one 6-6 hand in Round 4! There was also a 7-5 and a 6-5 in Round 5. In the same round, board 16 wasn't as wildly distributional, but certainly had the potential to generate swings (W dealer, EW vul):
After 1NT by East, if South can show both majors, I think North has a semi-automatic sacrifice in 4♥. That's certainly what happened at our table. However, to my surprise, only 2 pairs in the Seniors' (out of 14), one in the Open Stage 2 (out of 10) and none in the ANC Swiss (out of 14) found the save (data for the Women's Stage 2 not available at the time of writing) even though 4♥x should only be down 2 for -300.
Well, 180 boards played and another 168 to look forward to ...