Give the opponents a chance to go wrong

  • Figure 1: N/S Vul Dealer South

    Figure 1: N/S Vul Dealer South

  • Figure 2: ruff the Diamond return

    Figure 2: ruff the Diamond return

Bridge results from August 14 to 19, 2020

Bridge Club Results: 14-19 August

Friday 14 August

1. Gertie Barker & Martha Ferguson

2= Pat Siddle & Marilynn Simmons

2= Betsy Baillie & George Correia

Monday 17 August

1. Ian Hilton & Elaine Stevens

2. Margie Way & Heather Woolf

3. Gertie Barker & Jane Smith

Tuesday 18 August

1. Marion & Duncan Silver

2. Louise Payne & Katyna Rabain

3. Malcolm Moseley & Mark Stevens

Wednesday 19 August

1= Gertie Barker & Jane Smith

1= John & Sue Hodge

3= Lorna Anderson & Heather Woolf

3= Linda & Bill Pollett

The big news today is that the Bermuda Bridge Club is taking the first brave step to the “new normal” by scheduling its first game since March 13!

The game will take place at 9.30am on September 2 and will be played under strict protocols, the details of which have been sent out to the members.

The usual precautions include a safety officer to ensure things are kosher, masks when entering, front door left open, straight to the table to use the hand sanitiser, alternate tables being used for social-distancing, etc.

Clearly anyone with symptoms should not attend and neither should anyone who has returned from abroad in the 14 days before the game.

There is an added bonus for the first game in that it is completely free.

The club was approached by a sponsor who offered to pick up all the table fees for the game, to encourage a greater participation and this also plays well into the social-distancing, as there will be no money changing hands.

So, put September 2 in the diary and I hope there is a good turnout for the game.

When I construct a hand for the column I usually like them to be entertaining, but also instructional — today’s hand certainly qualifies for the former and can neatly fall into the instructional category on two counts:

a, When things look bleak, look for a perfect lie of the opponents cards

b, Give the opponents a chance to go wrong!

See figure 1

South decided to open his hand 1NT despite the singleton Ace which is not awful as it defines the point count and is almost balanced.

North bid Stayman and after hearing that South had a four card Spade suit went into a flight of fancy and on finding out that South had three Aces bid the hopeless Spade slam!

West led the Diamond King and as you can see the slam has no chance as there is no distribution of the defenders Spades that would allow for only one Spade loser — unless the defence co-operated!

And South did his best to help them. And you know he succeeded, otherwise this hand would not be in the column.

South kept a brave face when dummy appeared and at trick two laid down the Club Ace and then lead a low Spade — now put yourself in the West seat.

West is convinced that South is trying to get to dummy in order to discard his losing Diamonds on the great Clubs and he was not going to allow that.

So he rose with the Ace and ... let me show you the full hand [Figure 2]:

Poor West, South had tricked him into the only defence on the only distribution that would let the contract make by getting him to rise with the Spade Ace. South now ruffed the Diamond return, played a Spade to the King and a Spade to the 9 and claimed!

Of course West could have done better, but the singleton Ace of Clubs is not that unlikely given that South had opened with the singleton Ace of Diamonds? As I keep saying, the dimensions to this game are endless.

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Published Aug 22, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Aug 22, 2020 at 7:48 am)

Give the opponents a chance to go wrong

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