January 26;2014: Zimmermann won again the French DN1, this time 270-118 to the Zaleski team. The match was played in only 80 boards, after the third set the difference was 152 IMPs and Zaleski decided to withdraw. Results
Pierre Zimmermann, Franck Multon, Geir Helgemo, Tor Helness, Fulvio Fantoni, Claudio Nunes
Romain Zaleski, Michel et Thomas Bessis, Dominique Pilon, Philippe Cronier, Philippe Toffier
The 3rd set ended 45 a 12 for Zimmermann; 17 of them were added thanks to Board 23:
Cronier opened his hand with a 1 bid, Zaleski answered with a FG bid showing his diamonds and Fantoni showed his heart suit and a nice lead.
After Cronier’s pass, Nunes supported his partner’s suit and Zaleski invited to slam. Cronier accepted the invitation and they softly landed in a 6 slam.
Cronier ruffed the lead in dummy, Fantoni played his K and declarer his 4.
DD everybody could see that the slam depended on declarer finding the Q position, and declarer had the time to study the distribution, and the cards .
Cronier continued with a club to his Q, Nunes won the trick with his A and left his hand playing another club, dummy’s K won the trick, declarer ruffed a third club in his hand, watching Fantoni pitching a heart and ruffed a second heart in dummy, to continue with two trumps finishing in his hand.
Declarer now knew that both defenders had started with two trumps, plus as Fantoni had discarded a heart on the third round of clubs, Nunes was marked with 5 clubs. Fantoni’s 2 intervention during the bidding placed him with 6 or 7 hearts, so he only could have two or three diamonds. To get more information he played his K and Nunes made an incredible psychological discard the: 4, which clouded declarer’s mind with the idea: Fantoni has the Q.
Cronier continued with a diamond to the A and continued playing the J, Fantoni followed with small one…declarer too…and Nunes won the trick with his Q…for one down.
At the other table N/S also arrived at the same slam but Thomas Bessis never showed his holdings during the auction, leaving declarer without valuable information for his play.
With this lead again the key of the hand was the need to find the Q position.
Helgemo won the lead with dummy’s 10 and played a club to his Q, Michel Bessis won with his A, and returned a club.
Declarer won with dummy’s K and played a third club, watching Thomas Bessis pitching the 8, he ruffed in his hand with the 9. Now he knew the club was 5-4-2-2. He continued ruffing a heart in dummy and returned to his hand with a trump, learning that trumps were 5-4-2-2.
Now the A, pitching a diamond, when he saw both defenders play a heart, he continued ruffing another heart, and again saw both defenders playing a heart.
West so far had shown five clubs, three hearts and 2 spades…how many diamonds did he had? He ruffed last dummy’s club, Thomas played a heart …
Declarer had reached the moment of truth … and certainly the distribution was no longer a secret for Helgemo …
Helgemo played his K, continued with a small diamond and when Michel played a small one he played the J…to make his contract and add another 17 IMPs for his team…
A declarer play, who made a BBO commentator write: Chapeaux for Helgemo! to which we add: Chapeaux for Nunes!.