Difficult to get 12 tricks on two hands that don’t fit

  • Good for both bidding and play: figure 1

    Good for both bidding and play: figure 1


Thursday, June 11

1, Michael Tait and Jane Clipper

2, Linda Pollett and Elizabeth McKee

3, Misha Novakovic and Margie Way

Friday, June 12

1= Magda Farag and Sheena Rayner

1= Margie Way and Charles Hall

1= Lynanne Bolton and Peter Donnellan

Saturday, June 13

1, Rosie Smith and Julia Patton

2, Inger Mesna and Diana Downs

3, Marion and Duncan Silver

Monday, June 15


1, Elizabeth McKee and Margie Way

2, Ed Betteto and Jack Rhind

3, Diana Diel and Julia Patton


1, Alan Douglas and Hank Youngerman

2, Magda Farag and Sheena Rayner

3, Julia Beach and Annabelle Mann

Tuesday, June 16

149er Game

1, Marion and Duncan Silver

2, Louise Payne and Katyna Rabain

3, Wenda Krupp and Jane Gregory

Open Game

1, Jane Smith and Alan Douglas

2, Judy Bussell and Charles Hall

Wednesday, June 17


1, Elaine Stevens and Ian Hilton

2, Julia Beach and Sancia Garrison

3, Linda and Bill Pollett


1, Christine Lloyd-Jennings and Betsy Baillie

2, Gertie Barker and Jane Smith

3, Annabelle Mann and Patricia Colmet

Somehow a really crushed week amid the lockdown, as work keeps getting in the way of golf and bridge, so straight into the hand which is mainly about the declarer play, but also interesting in the bidding: See figure 1.

After the 1NT bid by South the two Clubs by North was New Minor Forcing, or NMF, which asks South if she has three-card Spade support.

South denies this, by not bidding two Spades and at the same time shows a four-card Heart suit.

If South did not have four Hearts, she would deny three Spades by bidding 2NT.

North had heard enough — there was clearly no fit and with 17 High Card Points opposite an opening hand he jumped to 6NT, knowing that it would probably be a struggle.

West led the Spade 9, which was ominous; if South tried the Spades first and they did not break, there would be no recovery. So she decided to develop some options.

Winning the Spade, declarer came to hand with a Diamond and led the 7 of Clubs — West was in a Morton’s Fork, with two options, both losing ones! If West goes up with the King, the contract makes with three Spades, four Hearts, two Diamonds and three Clubs and with the fall of the Club Jack!

If West plays low, declarer wins the Club Queen and now plays on Spades, that makes the hand with four Spades, four Hearts, two Diamonds and two Clubs! You may ask whether declarer would play the Club 10 if West plays smoothly low on the Club, but not on this hand, as even if the 10 draws the Club King, there are not enough tricks. Really nice play hand, but what it shows is how difficult it is to garner twelve tricks on two hands that don’t fit — even with a lot of HCP.

So be warned on these marginal slams — taking a plus score plus overtricks in 3NT is often the recommended route.

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Published Jun 20, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Jun 20, 2020 at 7:57 am)

Difficult to get 12 tricks on two hands that don’t fit

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