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Daily Bridge in New Zealand

A Chance to shine on Jan’s Day.

Well, the sun certainly is!

  There are two decisions to make with respect to the hand below. There is also a common bridge saying that “you should not double if you do not know what to lead”. So, do you know what to lead and are you that confident that you can defeat the contract? If you are, then you should double!

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Jan Cormack


West Deals
Both Vul
   
Q J 10
A 10
Q 7 2
A J 10 9 2
 
N
W   E
S
   
West North East South
1 NT 2  Pass 2 
Pass 3  Pass 4 
Pass 4  Pass 4 NT
Pass 5  Pass 6 
?      

 Do you double? What do you lead? Two questions for Jan’s Day:

The bidding is natural with 5Diamond-small showing one ace. Your opening 1NT shows 14-16.

Jan’s Day: Disasters come in...

“ No doubt you have heard the old superstition that disasters come in threes. If you have ever had the misfortune of suffering two disasters in a row, sure enough someone will tell you with a knowing air that you have one more disaster to overcome before life returns to normal.

I never believed this until when my partner and I had a costly bidding misunderstanding on Board 1 one evening. Then, our opponents bid a very tenuous small slam on Board 2 which required two out of two finesses to succeed, not to mention trumps breaking: our result was -920.

When Board 3 hit the table, my partner said philosophically “ Oh well, one more to go and then we can get down to playing bridge!”

Of course, I laughed and told him he was being ridiculous. Then, as dealer, I picked up the following:

     
Q J 10
A 10
Q 7 2
A J 10 6 2
 
N
W   E
S
   

 

and opened 1NT showing 14-16 hcp. My left-hand opponent bid a natural 2Diamond-small. My partner passed with South bidding 2Heart-small,described as “forcing”. And on it went:


West Deals
Both Vul
   
Q J 10
A 10
Q 7 2
A J 10 9 2
 
N
W   E
S
   
West North East South
1 NT 2  Pass 2 
Pass 3  Pass 4 
Pass 4  Pass 4 NT
Pass 5  Pass 6 
?      

 

I doubled. “Ha, ha,” I thought. Who said disasters come in threes? I selected the Spade-smallQ as my lead.

What seemed like a few blinks later, after the smoke had cleared, I had to agree with my partner’s fatalistic theories concerning disasters as the full deal was:


 
West Deals
Both Vul
9 8 5 3 2
5 2
A K 10 9 4 3
Q J 10
A 10
Q 7 2
A J 10 9 2
 
N
W   E
S
 
7 6 4
4 3
J 8 6 5
8 5 4 3
 
A K
K Q J 9 8 7 6
K Q 7 6

 

Declarer won Spade-smallA and played Club-smallK covered by my ace and ruffed in dummy. Diamond-smallAK took care of the two small club losers in the South hand and now a heart was played to my trump ace, being the only trick for the defence.

If only I had led my Heart-smallA and a second trump at trick 1! Taking the unusual bidding into account, Heart-smallA followed by Heart-small10 has to be the winning action, especially since the declarer had advertised the fact that he held clubs. I am sure you would have found the killing lead.

I am pleased to report that the remainder of the match settled down although we could not quite recover from our horror beginning.”

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And I can certainly confirm that 30 years on from Jan’s experience that “disasters coming in threes” is still very much in evidence. Shame I have no room to tell those stories! wink

Safety Plays and Signals: for less experienced players and others

Both these feature in our hand for tomorrow.

West Deals
None Vul
10 9 4 2
10 9 8
A J 8 5 4
9
   
N
W   E
S
   
 
A Q 8 7 5 3
A 7 2
7
A J 10
West North East South
1  Pass 1  1 
2  2  Pass 4 
All pass      

 

 

Bid them up: play them well”!

 

West leads Heart-smallK which you win with your ace. (Maybe you should not but you did!) Plan the play including the trump suit.

 

Richard Solomon

 

 

 

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