All News

Daily Bridge in New Zealand

11, 12 or 13 tricks?

You are in 6H. So, 12 tricks are sufficient, the 13th a bonus especially useful if you are playing Pairs. How though would you go about playing after West leads D10?

 

North Deals
N-S Vul

A Q 6

K 8 6 5

A Q 5

A 9 2

   

N

W

 

E

S

   
 

K 7 5 4

A Q 10 9

6

K J 7 5

 

West

North

East

South

 

1 ♣

Pass

1 

Pass

4 

Pass

4 NT

Pass

5 

Pass

6 

All pass

 

 

 

 

6  by South

 

After 4Heart-small showed 18/19, South was well placed to check for Key Cards with the 5Diamond-small response showing 1 or 4, obviously 4 in view of their previous bid. One key card would barely be enough to make 5Heart-small. So, South took the pragmatic and optimistic view. South could not be sure that their partner held both black suit queens which would be needed for a near lay-down grand-slam. So, small slam it was.

If declarer knew that both major suits were breaking evenly, then drawing trumps and cashing four rounds of spades would be fine as the fourth round of clubs could be ruffed in dummy.  However, if the spade break was not 3-3, then South needs to avoid two club losers to make their contract.

So, South decided to ruff two diamonds in the South hand in case the black suits did not behave. Even with trumps breaking 3-2, declarer cannot use trumps to communicate back to the dummy unless Heart-smallJ was doubleton.

So, Diamond-smallA and a diamond ruff, two high hearts from the South hand and a spade to dummy. Now ruff the Diamond-smallQ and play a second spade to dummy, drawing the last trump with dummy’s Heart-smallK. The contract was secure now because dummy was high apart from one possible club loser:

 

A Q 6

8

A 9 2

8 3 2

9 8

Q 3

 

N

W

 

E

S

 

J 10 9

10 8 6 4

 

K 7 5 4

K J 7

 

South could try spades first or else play the two top clubs and then spades, but either way, they were playing for the over-trick. No worries this time but a much safer way than having to ruff a spade loser in dummy and then relying on not losing two club tricks to make the slam.

Most routes seemed to rely on or be more comfortable with a 3-2 trump break. If there was a heart loser or even Heart-smallJxxx in the East hand, you would need some good fortune in the black suits to make 12 tricks. Always remember you can establish winners in dummy (dummy becoming the master-hand) which by ruffing two diamonds is what you are doing…and then you can play for the overtrick in comfort.

These were the four hands:

North Deals
N-S Vul

A Q 6

K 8 6 5

A Q 5

A 9 2

8 3 2

J 4

10 9 8 7 4 3

Q 3

 

N

W

 

E

S

 

J 10 9

7 3 2

K J 2

10 8 6 4

 

K 7 5 4

A Q 10 9

6

K J 7 5

 

West

North

East

South

 

1 ♣

Pass

1 

Pass

4 

Pass

4 NT

Pass

5 

Pass

6 

All pass

 

 

 

 

6  by South

 

6 trump tricks, Spade-small AKQ Diamond-smallA and two top clubs is 12 tricks. A great number when in 6Heart-small with the overtrick a bonus.

count to 12.jpg

Good luck to all those playing in the Inter-Provincial Trials this weekend.

Richard Solomon

 

Go Back View All News Items

Our Sponsors
  • Tauranga City Council
  • tourismbop.jpeg
  • TECT.jpg
  • Ryman
  • NZB Foundation