Sport: Wet Grand Slam

The grinding monotone of competitive bidding filled the ballrooms of Washington's Mayflower Hotel. For nearly two weeks, 3,000 bridge players had been fidgeting, frowning and fussing with their cards while they sat through 10,860 hands and struggled for six national titles at the 26th annual Summer Championship of the American Contract Bridge League. The tension was enough to drive strong men to drink. Eventually, it did.

The final matches were getting under way last week when one of the tournament directors blew a police whistle for quiet and rose to make an embarrassing but necessary announcement: "Any player having a bottle of...

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