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2001: A Bridge Odyssey

As we head into a new millennium (officially now since the A.D. calendar began with the year 1, not zero) I will take you on a bridge odyssey — or at least offer you a bidding challenge. These six problems first appeared in the October 1980 Florida Bridge News as a bidding panel, of which I was the moderator. Challenge yourself by choosing your call as South from the choices offered.

In January 2001 these problems were presented as a poll, with 283 entrants from 81 locations.
The poll is closed, but you can still try it as a quiz and find your score immediately.

Assume both sides use Standard American bidding (unless noted otherwise) with 15-17 notrumps, five-card majors and weak two-bids. Object is to find the best call based on judgment so only basic conventions are allowed. For a system reference, see Standard American Bridge.

There’s no time to waste! Begin your odyssey now, before HAL 9000 notices what you’re up to.

Problem 1

IMPsNone VulYou, South, hold:
 
West

1 S
North

2 D
East

Pass
South
1 C
?
S A 9 6
H Q J 10
D A
C A 9 8 7 5 3
 
Your call: 2 H  2 S  2 NT  3 C  3 NT

Problem 2

IMPsBoth VulYou, South, hold:
 
West

Pass
Pass
North

1 S
2 NT
East

Pass
Pass
South
1 H
2 C
?
S
H A K 6 4 3
D K 10 2
C A Q J 7 2
 
Your call: 3 C  3 D  3 H  3 NT  4 C

Problem 3

MatchpointsNone VulYou, South, hold:
 
West

3 S
North

Pass
East

Pass
South
1 C
?
S K 8
H A Q 10 9
D
C A K J 10 8 7 6
 
Your call: Double  3 NT  4 C  4 H  5 C

Problem 4

IMPsE-W VulYou, South, hold:
 
West
North
3 S
East
4 H
South
?
S K J 7 5 4
H 6 4 3
D A 6 3
C 5 4
 
Your call: Pass  4 S  4 NT  5 D  5 S  6 D  6 S

Problem 5

IMPsBoth VulYou, South, hold:
 
West
3 NT1
North
Pass
East
Pass
South
?
S K Q
H A J 9 8 4
D A J 7 6 5 3
C
 

1. gambling

Your call: Pass  Double  4 C  4 D  4 H  4 NT  5 D

Problem 6

MatchpointsN-S VulYou, South, hold:
 
West

1 S
North
1 D
2 D
East
Pass
2 S
South
1 H
?
S A J 7 6
H K Q 10 8 6
D 9 7
C 8 2
 
Your call: Pass  Double  2 NT  3 D  3 H

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Credits to Stanley Kubrick and the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey
© 2001 Richard Pavlicek