Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Digging up an old bridge deal

We've started a new column about online bridge in the Bridge Bulletin. For June, I'm writing about the Goldway Pairs. Beginning back in the Nineties, OKbridge had a monthly match that pitted Bobby Goldman and Paul Soloway against various challengers. Goldway is obviously a combination of their two surnames.

The list of people they played against is a who's who of bridge: Seamon and Passell, Helgemo and Forrester, Greco and Hampson, Smith and Oshlag. Huh? Smith and Oshlag? Yeah, while doing my research, I saw that Richard and I took them on in August, 1998.

The match was close. It was scored by IMPs, and Goldway led 25-22 after 16 deals and with one to play.

Q 8 7
Q 3
J 9 4 2
A J 5 2
6 J 10 3
A 9 7 4 2 K J 10 8 6
Q 10 5 A 7 3
9 6 4 3 K Q
A K 9 5 4 2
K 8 6
10 8 7

West North East South
Goldman Oshlag Soloway Smith
Pass 1 3
4 4 All Pass

4 was a good sacrifice as East-West are cold for 4. I couldn't know this, but if I went down one, we would win 2.10 IMPs and lose a squeaker.

Goldman led the A and switched to the 5. Soloway won the ace and was at the crossroads. If he returned a diamond, I had no chance. A diamond return, however, would set up a club discard so Soloway switched to the K, giving me a chance. (Picture my hand with seven spades, one less club and the Q instead of the K.)

I won, drew two rounds of trumps and led the 10. Soloway took that and continued with the 7. I won, led a trump to the queen, ruffed the Q and ran my trumps.

When I led my last trump, Goldman was squeezed in this position:

J 5
--- ---
--- J 10
Q 7
9 6 ---

Making 4 was a 10.69-IMP pickup making the final score 32-25 in favor of our side.

You can see the results if you go here.


  1. Congrats on your column...will this be a regular thing?

  2. Well played!

    You need the SQ entry to be able to cash the 4th club, in case the second round of clubs is ducked when clubs are 3-3. So it seems right to play clubs after drawing just two rounds of trump. It is safe to do so as RHO holds both the CQ and the third trump.

    The fact that RHO won the CQ immediately and switched to a diamond (giving you an option of finessing him for DQ) instead of his third spade points to him holding a 3-5-3-2 hand without the DQ. Thus LHO can be squeezed in the minors as he holds the DQ and the club stopper.

  3. I wish I knew what the hell you were talking about. lol

  4. I loved the Goldway games. I wish BBO would do something like that today.

  5. Isn't it good to know that you are famous is Ocala, what with the MOJO Grill?

    My neighbor told me yesterday he was thinking of playing bridge again...hasn't played since he was young; and he has a good friend who is really into it, playing in tourneys all over the country!

    I said, "Hey, I know someone like that!"

    I don't think you're his friend, though. I think his friend lives in Florida.