A Lighter Look
Who Understands them?
“Who” or is it “whom” are we talking about…or to be grammatically correct, “about whom are we talking?” Women, of course. Follow me through one particular recent hand and explain the logic. I held :
With the opposition vulnerable, this seemed to be a perfect hand for the unusual 2NT. There was just one problem. Partner had first shot….and not being very co-operative, she decided to open with 1. My right hand opponent called 1. 2NT hardly fitted the bill now whether it was natural or game-force with heart agreement! I decided on 2 (you can email the reasons I should double if you wish!) only to hear 2 from partner.
Lovely. I tried 3. You can email the reasons why I should have passed, if you wish! I will be probably be getting a lot of emails very soon!
3 came partner’s next offering and, fearful of finding my inbox would be soon over-full, I passed. Yes, I know 3 should be game forcing, though that is surely only from the point of view of the partner? If the 3 bidder chooses to pull up short of game, they can. I did and on the lead of 5 rather apologized as I put down dummy. Partner thanked me, a sign of either politeness or genuine pleasure! I feared the former. Let me set out the dummy again for you:
Eagle-eyed readers will have noticed a small difference from the hand given at the start of the article. Partner called for a low club from dummy and won the trick with the 10 in her hand. Out came A (“at least partner has not a totally ragged heart suit” I mused) and I was told (sorry, “requested”) to discard a low club. I played the 9 as it was at the bottom of the club suit.
With decided emphasis, partner reached across to dummy, retrieved the 9 and replaced it with 7. I felt humble, duly apologetic, quite inadequate (I could not even lay dummy down correctly….and I was only challenged to lay down three suits!).
Next came partner’s K (‘’good on you, partner”) with Q dropping on my right (lucky I did not give you a singleton heart..you might have taken a losing finesse!). Oh, which card did partner call for from dummy? You guessed it. That oh so valuable 9 which had been so carefully preserved from the previous trick!
Just as well you saved it, partner!
Can you explain? Not I.
Anyway, of rather secondary importance was the fact that partner went on to make precisely 9 tricks, losing one heart (9) (do you see how valuable these 9's are?), one diamond and two spades. Great bidding! You want to see all four hands?
|1 ♠||2 ♦||Pass||2 ♥|
|Pass||3 ♣||Pass||3 ♥|
I was reflective of partner’s attention to detail of my little club pips but decided it was best not to mention any inconsistency in this regard. Seeing partner’s wonderful trumps and 15 hcp, I was very glad we had stayed out of game. Facing my own bidding (that's bidding both hands!), I am sure my second bid as South would have been 3 while my third bid would have been 4. More email correspondence?
So, all I can say is that I may not understand much about them but, this day, I was very glad to have one of them as my partner.
Richard Solomon (brave or foolish enough to put my name to this piece).