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What an elegant way to recover

By David Ezekiel

This week’s hand shows that there is more than one way to skin a cat - or beat a contract!

Dealer East N/S Vulnerable

North

S A10954

H Q5

D 853

C 1032

West East

S 86 S KQ

H K4 H J108762

D KQ92 D J764

C AKQ98 C 5

South

S J732

H A93

D A10

C J764

In both rooms in a team game, East opened a slightly off-colour weak 2H (only one point in the suit and six outside) and both West’s raised straight to 4H.

I do not like these undisciplined openers opposite an unpassed partner - if the bidding gets competitive, partner will have no way of knowing whether you have any defensive tricks outside the heart suit and will usually come to the wrong decision.

I like my first and second seat pre-empts to be disciplined, whether at the two or three level but once partner is a passed hand the gloves are off and the bidding can then be disruptive as opposed to constructive.

Now, back to the defence. Remarkably, both South’s started the defence the same way but only one recovered.

The contract looks doomed from the start with two aces and two trumps to lose but ... bridge is a strange game.

In the Open Room, South started with the diamond ace and continued with another diamond. Declarer won this and quickly discarded two spades on the clubs, ruffed a spade in his hand and led a low heart. When South played low the king won and now all the defence could make were two more heart tricks.

In the Closed Room, the first six tricks went exactly the same but when declarer led a low, heart. David Bakhshi, sitting South, who teaches at the Andrew Robson Bridge Club in Britain, rose with the ace of hearts, led a club for partner to ruff with the queen, and partner David Gold now led back a diamond which was ruffed - down one. What an elegant way to recover!

<p>Results from Bermuda Bridge Club</p>

Recent results from the Bermuda Bridge Club:• Tuesday, July 21North-South1 John Luebkemann-Jean Wolosiuk2 Mary Leigh Burnett-Willi Christensen3 Marion Ezedinma-Louis PayneEast-West1 Jane Gregory-Ray DeSilva2 Linda Abend-Christine Lloyd-Jennings3 George and Sandra Ogden• Wednesday, July 22North-South1 Julia Beach-Peter Donnellain2 Lyn O’Neill-Molly Taussig3 Lynanne Bolton-Greta MarshallEast-West1 Sheena Rayner-Elizabeth McKee2 Kathy Keane-Caroline Svensen3 Trish Colmet-Aida Bostelmann• Thursday, July 23Junior1 Martha Ferguson-Noula Contibas2 Betty Ann Sudbury-Mary Leigh Burnett3 Ann Proctor-Annelies SchelandOpen1 Jane Smith-Alan Douglas2 Gertie Barker-Ernest Paynter3 Rachael Gosling-Simon Giffen• Friday, July 24North-South1 Jeanett Shaw-Nea Willets2 Russ Craft-Trish ColmetEast-West1 Marg Way-Diana Diel2 Pat Siddle-Julia Beach• Monday, July 27North-South1 Marg Way-Tony Saunders2 Jane Clipper-Caroline Svensen3 George Correia-Christine Lloyd-JenningsEast-West1 Dot and Tony Buckley2 Diana Diel-Molly Taussig3 Pat Siddle-Gill GrayEvening1 Misha Novakovic-Marg Way2 Dave Cordon-Charles Hall3 Rachael Gosling-Dulai Ghosh• Tuesday, July 28North-South1 Linda Abend-Noula Contibas2 Joyce Pearson-Christine Lloyd-Jennings 3 Mary Leigh Burnett-Willi ChristensenEast-West1 Richard Keane-Delton Outerbridge2 Nikki Boyce-Carol Eastham3 Judith Law-Pat Mahar• Wednesday, July 291 Dee Craft-Greta Marshall2 Jane Smith-Sheena Rayner3 Trish Colmet-Russ Craft• Thursday, July 301/2 Lyn O’Neill-Diana Diel1/2 Richard and Wendy Gray3 Russ Craft-Mike Viotti— Compiled by Julia Lunn