Discussing some hands of this event with my friend Ilai Baniri (ISR), we decided to consult some hands with friends. I for my side and he for his, combining experience with youth, and the results are as follows.
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Dealer North. E/W Vul
A 9 3 J 7 4 A J J 10 6 5 4
Zia Mahmood (USA) WGM 5
Marcelo Castello Branco (BRZ) WGM: 5
5 Normal bid.
Giovanni Donati (ITA) 5
5. A clear defence: they are likely to make their game and I expect to pay 300 or 500 in the worst case.
David Bakhshi (ENG) WIM: 5
5– Maybe depends a little on our partnership style, but I would expect them to make 5and would hope that 5goes for at most 500 and more likely 300.
Krzysztof Martens (MON) WGM: 5
Brian Senior (ENG) WM: 5
5,I know – the five-level belongs to the opponents and all that – but 5could be cold, while 5 is certain to be cheaper than their game. And, yes, facing the wrong 4opener this could be a phantom, turning a plus into a minus.
Ida Grönkvist (SWE) WIM 5
5.Most likely a good sacrifice. Sometimes we will beat 5a trick but then 5is not too expensive either. I think the likeliest result on the board is -300/-500 against -600.
Benjamin Robles (CHI) WM Pass
Pass. The game is theirs and I do not intend to push them to a possible 1370.
5Very tough to make educated decisions. However, when opening in spades, as opposed to hearts, it pays off to exercise some discipline. If that is our style, we should be fairly confident that 5makes. Surely, 5is a good save. I deem the risk of pushing opponents to a making slam negligible.
4= 11 experts
Pass = 1 experts