News archive

A Lighter Look

“What a Pass”

Take a step forward, Stanley Abrahams. In case you do not know, he is a fine intuitive Auckland bridge player. Played for New Zealand, too. So, pardon the expression, “no mug”. Lover of the Multi 2Diamond-small too, whether he has or has not the requirements to open it. He has many stories to tell, “Multi successes stories”.

Your first question is to identify which seat Stanley occupied in the following real auction from a recent Thursday night at the Auckland Bridge Club.

While you are musing an answer to that, have a glance at the East hand in this auction and decide what you would bid at the point of the question mark:

Dealer South. Nil Vul

West          North         East            South


2Diamond-small 1           Pass            2NT            4Spade-small

Pass            Pass            5Heart-small            Pass

Pass            5Spade-small               ?

1 Multi 2Diamond-small

East held:

Spade-small 10

Heart-small AJ9

Diamond-small AKQ

Club-small AKJ654

While you are thinking about that, have you put down your money as to where you think Stanley may have been sitting? I suspect many of you would be wrong. He was not sitting South.

Here’s another auction for you to consider with that attractive East hand:

West          North         East            South


Pass            Pass            x                 Pass

5Heart-small              5Spade-small             6Heart-small              6Spade-small

Pass            Pass            ?

Your double was not really take out which tends to suggest that West has a fair few cards in hearts. One further question. Do you want a plus score on this board? Then, you had better bid the grand slam!

Board 11
South Deals
None Vul
A Q 9
8 6 3 2
9 8 7 3 2
K Q 10 7 5 4
9 7 6 5
Q 10
W   E
A J 9
A K J 6 5 4
K J 8 7 6 4 3 2
J 10 8 4 2


The “expert” trump lead against even 6Spade-small does not work as although declarer must give up a diamond, the defence are then out of trumps! 6Spade-small unbeatable. Well bid by Allan and Bev Morris to 6Spade-small which East just had to double. Slam bid and made on a combined 11hcp! Victor Mollo’s “Unlucky Expert” or David Bird’s Abbot must have been sitting East.

Most just had to double 5Spade-small…just another flat board as +750 to North-South was the result at seven of the ten tables. Allan and Bev Morris would have loved to have Trudy Lange and Brent Mandel as teammates as they would have added 920 for 6Club-small making to their 1210 score..but this was Pairs!

and Stanley? Not one of his “Multi Success” stories…or maybe it is? He did open the Multi as West and defended 5Spade-smallx, restricting declarer to one overtrick. A success? “ Say East had bid 6Heart-small. What would they have done when South bid 6Spade-small” asked Stanley? We know the answer to that.

So, who then, in true Abrahams style, had found a pass in first seat, against Stanley, and emerged from the bushes later? We will leave you where we came in, but with a couple of small changes:

 “Watt. A pass?”

Well bid, or should I say, “passed”, Russell Watt.

All that glitters is not gold.png

It can be the shape that they hold.

 Richard Solomon




Go Back View All News Items

Our Sponsors
  • Babich
  • JLT Logo square.jpg
  • NZB Foundation
  • JLT and Chubb Logo square 02.jpg