Ludington Daily News – 1 Mar 1971

South dealer. Neither vulnerable.

Opening lead—ace of hearts.

You’re not dealt a ten-card suit very often; in fact, the odds against being dealt one are over 60,000 to 1, However, a ten-carder did pop up in the 1962 world championship match between Italy and the United States.

At the first table, the American South (Key) opened innocently enough with 1 spade, over which West (Forquet) bid five hearts, North (Nail) bid five spades which East (Garozzo) doubled. Perhaps Gurozzo should have bid six hearts despite the void — instead of doubling. However, he didn’t.

Understandably, Forquet went to six hearts, but Nail very properly bid six spades. Again Garozzo doubled when he might have passed and thus invited Forquet to bid seven hearts with an appropriate hand (which Forquet had).

This time Forquet did pass and the Italians scored their obvious three tricks to beat the contract 300 points.

The American East-West pair at the second table fared quite a bit better with their ten-card suit. The bidding wont:

West North East South
1 4NT 5 Dbl
Pass 6 All Pass

The Italian South (D’Alelio) bid a spade and West (Mathe) somewhat mysteriously overcalled with four notrump (apparently Blackwood). When Chiaradia bid five spades, East (Von Dor Porten) doubled.

Again West bid six hearts… Mathe hadn’t seen a ten-card suit in years—and that ended the bidding. He easily made seven for 1,010 points. and the American team gained 710 points on the deal. Both Wests staggered unconvincingly in the bidding without knowing where to stop, which would seem to indicate that no one has had much experience with ten-card suits.