Bridge Club regular Gina Graham will be sorely missed
This week’s hand is a little more advanced than usual, but has some real instructional value in the declarer play and in the bidding (see Figure 1).
The bidding was good (see Figure 2).
South opened a 15-17 NT and North’s 2 heart bid was a transfer to spades – South’s 3 spade bid was a “super accept” showing 4 spades and better than minimum hand and North had just enough to accept the invitation.
In a team game, neither player in the West chair wanted to make an aggressive lead because both of them felt such a lead could give the contract away – and yes, leading away from a Jack is often dangerous (give dummy Q10 and declarer Ax and you will see why). As a result, they both led a trump.
The first declarer played the 10 of spades from dummy and took East’s Jack with his Queen and drew the remaining trumps with the Ace. He crossed to dummy with a diamond to the King and ran the seven of clubs to West’s Queen.
West exited with a low diamond to dummy’s Ace. Declarer continued by playing a club from dummy. East’s diamond discard meant that he had a second club loser and that the contract would depend on the King of hearts making a trick. Alas, West had both the ace and queen of hearts and this declarer was down one – a fairly well deserved result for declarer as the play was pedestrian.
How would you tackle the hand? I’ll give you a hint – the play involves the sexy sounding “strip and end-play”, so with that in mind give it a try before seeing what declarer in the other room did.
At the other table, declarer also drew a second round of trumps with the Ace at trick two. Then he cashed dummy’s Ace and King of diamonds, returned to hand with a trump to the King, ruffed the 10 of diamonds in dummy and, finally, ran the 7 of clubs to West’s Queen. This was now the position (see Figure 3).
Based on South’s bidding, West knew that he held the King of hearts, so he exited with a low club which was won in dummy with the eight, East discarding a low diamond.
Declarer now knew the layout of the hand and simply played the Ace and another club to West’s King and West found himself end-played for a second time on the deal. With only hearts remaining, West cashed the Ace of hearts and continued with a low heart to declarer’s King – ten tricks for declarer and a big win on the board.
The strip and end-play comes up ever so often, especially when you have good trumps in both hand, so keep a lookout for the opportunity over your next few games.
In closing, I sadly pass on news of the death of a loyal and active Bridge Club member, Gina Graham, who passed away last week in King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.
Gina returned to the Bridge Club a few years ago, having played with her husband David many years before. She was a popular member who was universally liked, and she will be sorely missed. Gina and her partner Felicity Lunn were regular players on a Monday afternoon and Tuesday and Thursday evenings and her absence will leave a void for the regulars in those sessions.
All at the Bridge Club send our sincere condolences to her children Kerry, Sarah and Patrick.
BRIDGE CLUB RESULTS
Friday, January 21
1. Peter Donnellan – Jack Rhind
2. Charles Hall – John Rayner
3. Magda Farag – Marge Way
Monday, January 24
1. Lynanne Bolton – Peter Donnellan
2. Pat Siddle – Gill Gray
3. Magda Farag – Sheena Rayner
Tuesday, January 25
1. Marion Silver – Duncan Silver
2. Veronica Boyce – Carol Eastham
3. Sarah Bowers – Stuart Clare
Wednesday, January 26
1. Martha Ferguson – Judy King
2. Marge Way – Charles Hall
3. Bill Pollett – John Rayner
Thursday, January 27
1. Linda Pollett – Elizabeth McKee
2. Marge Way – Diana Diel
3. Lynanne Bolton – Peter Donnellan