8th European Open Championships
Montecatini, Italy • 10 – 24 June 2017
June 10, 2017
MONTECATINI ALTO (HIGH) is the original Montecatini settlement, lying a few hundred metres above the ‘new’ town. The views from there are splendid, and the delightful Piazza Giusti is home to some good bars and restaurants.
Montecatini alto (high) is a characteristic medieval village, abounding in historical events culture and illustrious personages, is one of the most ancient inhabited centers in the Valdinievole. The Vallis Nebulae, or Valley of Fog, as it was called was, of old, inhabited by the Ligurians, Etruscans, Romans and Longobards and was always of relevant strategic importance because its hill dominated the important roads of communication such as the Cassia, the Francesca and the Romea. The Montecatini Alto of today, a suggestive outdoor masterpiece, does not retain the image of a sole period nor does it have a style with a definite, rigid imprint. Instead, it is witness to a historical parable of intense experiences, filled with dark moments, almost total descruction opposed to other periods of growth and splendour. Borgo, Castello, Terra Murata: around the year 1000 this ancient nucleus already had twenty-five house-towers and two fortresses to its name, town walls two kilometres long, built according to the natural course of the two hills, with seven gateways confirming a proud and uncompromising civic nobility and an indisputable strategic and military importance that lasted up until the fatal year of 1315, when Castruccio Castracani, a Ghibelline, lieutenant of Uguccione della Fagiola, laid siege to the castle, took it by storm and sacked it atrociously.
Today started the European Mixed Teams Open Championship, with a field of 114 teams. On Round 3 of the ten RR rounds, Board 22 generated important swings on many tables, almost all of those swings depended on how high South over-called after a 1 opening by East.
At table 1 a Norwegian team faced a Japan team:
Round 3 Board 22
East opened 1 and South chose to show his two-colored hand (spades and diamonds) with a heart cue-bid. This caused a Pass from West and a 4 jump from North. East doubled to show strength, but West preferred to pass.
East led his club ace, and watching dummy’s singleton club continued with his A and another heart, expecting his partner to ruff.
Declarer was able to win with dummy’s king of heart, and play a spade. West decided to take action and played the ace of spades, a second after she was watching the king of his partner fall.
Not even with this play the declarer could win the contract, since he lost, a clubr, a heart, a spade and the diamond king.
At the other table, not taking up space from the auction, and only declaring at the one level, had its consequences…
Larsson chose not to show her two suits and only showed her spades. East used the opportunity to show her club suit, with 2 (alerted as No Forcing). Also here North jumped to 4, but now East, with a strong hand and A K x x in his partner’s suit, chose to play game in clubs.
The spade lead, was won at the table with the king singleton, the declarer played two trump rounds, immediately discarded a diamond in the ace of spades and claimed.
See what was played and the result of the board on all tables: click here.
Watch the bidding in Helgemo’s table: