Writers’ weekly 40 | risky doubles at the mixed team

Welland-Auken (European Champoinship 2018)

The team of Marian Michelsen, Zia Mahmood, Sabine Auken and Roy Welland were among the very favorites at the Mixed Team event during the 15th World Bridge Series held in Orlando.

They took an early lead in the qualifying stage with solid play and a fair share of luck.

This board from the fith match in the qualifying stage was not handled the way most of us play teamgames, take a look at this:


First you can try to find a lead holding Sabine Aukens cards as east, dealer south all white.

 1 NT opening = 10-13 and your double was a take-out – your partner passed a take-out double in front of the declarer. What seems to be the best lead?

I do hope you trust nobody but yourself and lead your best suit. Sabine led a club and that was a killer when the cards looked like this

Declarer won the ace and continued the king of spades, west holding back the ace. Next came the ten of spades, again west held back the ace. King of hearts was won by the ace, then the king of clubs was followed by ace, king and queen of diamonds. Declarer could ruff but could not help but accepting west to win two more tricks in spades.

A very close pass by west that was lucky to find a way to score 100. Declarer might have done better to safe the ten of spades and just play on hearts. Now the defense has to play accurate letting west discard a heart on the jack of clubs, if they slip playing 3 rounds of diamonds declarer will win his contract.

But looking at a few of the other boards in the event so far, we do not believe Welland-Auken could do any mistakes. They would for sure find the defense against any attempts from declarer.