Thursday, 20 January 2011

Wednesday 19 January

Playing with Bob McKinnon we came joint third with 57% behind 58% and 60%. Blew it on two boards, one where I took a dreadful punt at 6H (after 1H - 2D and you hold AQJ of diamonds you sort of hope for 5 diamond tricks -- partner had 4 to the 8), the other one Bob could have bid 4S (which makes 12) but stopped at 3.

Anyway, Bob is the only one to bid 3NT on this after I opened a weak NT.

No chance on a heart lead, but East decided to lead their suit rather than their partner's. So I won with JS, crossed to AC and led a diamond to King and Ace. A heart swicth can't beat me now as long as I duck, but West led back a spade, now I just give her the other diamond and claim 10 tricks.

Bob left me for the last round and I played this board with Robert. The bidding went:

P - P - 1D - 1S - 2D - 2S - 3C - 3S -

Now we're vul vs non-vul. It feels that probably 3S and 3D make, but then we've got a 10 card fit and opponents probably 9, so the Law says we might make 4D. Robert is then 1 - 3 - 5 - 4 with a good hand for the 3C bid. I don't think either opponent will see a double if I bid 4D, so I chanced 4D, no double and lo and behold Robert makes it with just a spade and two hearts to lose for a top.

Back with Bob, against Katie & David who won the tournament, the bidding goes:

P - P - 1D - x - 1H - x - 3D - x - P - 3S - P - P -

Well I hope Bob plays 3D rebid to show 7 tricks, he must have 6 diamonds to AKQ and maybe AC, maybe 7 running diamonds. Anyway I tried 3N, David doubled and Bob bid 4D (I would almost certainly pull it as well.
David was planning to lead a club, so 3N was 1 off.

This wasn't a good board due to not playing with each other. Bob opened 1H, I raised to 2H and Bob bid 2NT. Now I always play bid 3H if you have 4, but thinking that Bob is flat and we have duplicate 4333 I decided that 8 tricks might even be a struggle.
So I passed.
1 off for a 2nd bottom. Hearts makes without a problem, 10 tricks is even possible.
Although double dummy you can probably make 2NT, QC to Ace, win 2nd club. TH to KH, finesse 9D! Easy. When you give up a heart (keep 6 in hand to get into 7 in dummy to finesse again diamonds and throw 3 spades on the clubs (2 spades from dummy).

We got a bottom on this hand. Some were in 5D, others in 3NT were 1 off. I don't understand how you can ever be 1 off.
Bob played 3NT and got the club lead winning in dummy. He leads 10D, JD, Ace, small. Now a small diamond to the King, play third diamond and all the clubs put you 2 down.
How do you go 1 down? If you abandon diamonds you actually make 9!!!
When KD wins and East shows out, cash Ace and Jack of hearts, AK of spades and K and 10 of hearts for 9 tricks.

This board was a success, even if we missed game.

The bidding is:

1D - P - 1S(?) - x - 3S - 4C passed out

Bob has no problem making 11, losing only 2 hearts.
Mostly it was part scores making E/W or some 1 off, nobody else found the clubs.

Just an average on this hand as many E/W went too high. Bob was in 1NT but played it extremely well. I can't remember the exact run of the cards, but he did get all these tricks, 2 spades, 2 hearts, 1 diamond and 2 clubs.

QS was led and West overtook. So Bob takes King and sees that the pips give him a second spade. He returns 2S at trick 2, East cashes the other spade and exits with a heart to Bob's Queen. He cashes the 4th spade. However West has thrown a heart at one point and when Bob exits with KH, he sets up dummy's 10 for his 4th trick. East exits with the heart, Bob leads a diamond from dummy, West takes the Ace and plays another, Bob plays KD and another and West has to lead from KC for 7 tricks.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Monday 17 January

Playing E/W with Adrianne we finished 4th with 13 Butler points. Didn't really do much wrong.

On this board against Jim Forsyth & Jim McMahon we gained 1 whole point. There were many diamond contracts N/S going off. Many 140s our way. I scored 170 and though we thought at the time a diamond lead keeps it to nine, the hand is stiff for 10.

I opened 1C passed round to Jim F at North who bid 1D. I bid 1S, Jim McM 2D and Adrianne 2S. JF bid 3D and I bid 3S, Adrianne gave this some thought, but passed.

On a diamond lead, win the Ace, play AS, A & KH, lead TH and whether N ruffs or not, throw the diamond.

I got a spade lead, crossed to KH and led a club, JF went up with Ace and played a diamond, I won and threw dummy's diamond on KC.

We had two bad scores against Bob McKinnon & Ian Patrick. They play strong NT and 5 card Stayman, so their bidding obviously was:

P - 1NT - 2C - 2S - 4S

Adrianne led xH to Bob's King. Bob plays on spades, Adrianne taking the second round and plays another heart. I win the Ace and exit with a diamond. Bob clears trumps and plays TC, Adrianne covers with the King and 10 tricks are claimed.

Not many bid game and it is only beatable by a KC lead which is never going to happen. After the heart lead, it won't work if I go up with Ace and switch to a club, declarer can just duck the King to sever communications for a ruff. Anyway I'm just not good enough to do that.

The next board was very similar.

Again with no intervention Bob & Ian bid:

1NT - 2D - 3H - 4H

Again not many were in this game and again it can be defeated.

Adrianne decides on an attacking lead against this good fit and leads a small spade. I take the Ace and return the two. Now we must set up a diamond to defeat this. If I had returned a diamond however declarer can set up a diamond trick for a club discard. So the only hope is when Adrianne is back in with this spade. However having tried one attacking lead, understandably she is going to take the safe exit of a third spade. It is unfortunate she didn't pick the diamond lead initially. That's bridge.

Finally, against Careen and Barry the bidding went:

P - 1D - 1S - 4NT - 5S - x - P - 6D - Passed out

Unbeatable of course. Half bid it, half didn't. We were -7 compared to +10 for those who only had the game bid against them. However, one who bid 6Sx 3 down was +7. We should have been there.

I think my 5S says I've no defence here. However Adrianne has the chance with AQ of hearts and just maybe partner has AS (though I shouldn't). So to get there I think I shouldn't have bid 5S. I should pass, wait to see if 6D is bid (it will be, Careen will assume Barry has AH) and then bid 6S.

Stupid me.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Monday 10 January

Playing with Adrianne we came second 3 points behind with Butler scoring. There were a few hands with big swings, mistakes by our opponents helped us. Only one hand with a big score against us when Derek Shafer bid 6S that few others did. King of trumps was onside and cards lay favourably to make it unbeatable.
Most other hands were just +2/3 or -2/3

Board 20 had the potential for some swings, but nobody made a game. One N/S made 8 in NT. You would think that would be four down or else make (2 diamond entries to get 3 club tricks). 5D goes 1 off.

Adrianne, like the majority was in 4S by W going 1 off.
Adrianne opened 1S, Davna overcalled 2D and I bid 4S.

Davna led AD and switched per force to 5H. Adrianne won the Queen with her King and cashed 2 top spades. She plays another heart to her Ace. She continues JH discarding a club, Davna cannot rough or she is end played.
Adrianne continued a heart to rough in dummy, and immediately realised her error.

If she had just played a spade, Davna wins and has to give a rough and discard or give Adrianne the King of clubs.

On this board Gerry & Ileen made it difficult for us (as you would expect). They bid all the way to 5H. Adrianne then pauses over this and although I am sure double is more sensible, once she has paused feels she must make the decision and with her shape thinks 5S might be better.
Gerry had shown his clubs in the bidding so Ileen gets her side off to the best start with the club lead, but Adrianne was quite right about her distribution and I just lose a club and a heart.
5Hx would have gone for 500 instead of the 450, but then Adrianne would have worried that I would have found a way to keep it to 300.
This is the board Derek & Alan bid 6S against us.
Alan opened 1D, Derek bids a spade and Alan 3S, Derek then employs Blackwood and is soon in 6S.
Derek drew trump, took two club discards on the hearts and one club rough then a diamond finesse into Adrianne's Jack. Roughs the heart return, AD and he's home.

You could also play for two club roughs and take two diamond discards.
Either way an unbeatable slam that few bid, the complaint is more should have!

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Wednesday 5th January

One of those nights you want to forget, somehow we ended up with 47.5%, felt like 35%. When 5 boards running you enter the result and it comes up 0% you wonder if there is a machine fault or is there something wrong with my bidding/play? Unfortunately those Bridgemates are completely reliable.

For some reason my partner would prefer to remain anonymous, so I won't mention the name of the West District Chairman (WDC).

On board 1 I had a bidding problem. I discounted 3C, for 5C I prefer 8 cards and no defence at all. I decided to open 1C, Ian Patrick overcalled 1H and WDC bid an inverted 3C. Bob McKinnon bid 4H and I bid 5C hoping for just 2 off and Ian doubled. Bob didn't fancy that would be their best score and bid 5H. This goes round to partner who, facing an opening bid, not unreasonably doubles.

This I reckon will be a bottom so I bid 6C, maybe that can be just 2 off (some hope). Ian doubles again and I go 3 off for a bottom.

A 5C opener is more interesting, presumably Ian doubles and Bob bids 5S (might be tempted to bid 6). Partner would likely bid 6C and if E/W go to 6S that can't make, only 6H makes.

One pair did bid the heart slam after a 5C opener (Adrianne & Christine), unluckily they bid 7!

With no interference our bidding on this hand went: 1C - 1S - 2H - 3C - 3D - 3S - 5C

Difficult for me to know South has 6 spades, though I could still have elected for the 5 - 2 fit. Quite a few found the spade contract so 5C didn't score too well.

I probably didn't play it well either. I got a diamond lead to the 9 and Ace. I should play on spades, but I fancied that if I played a heart now I would get a diamond continuation. So I played 3H from hand, won by the 7 in East's hand. However much as West wanted another diamond, Moira Moreland correctly played a club.

Now I have to play spades but they lie perfectly for me even though Mary correctly tests me with a third spade when in with the King.

Playing Benji, we can use 2C to show a 19-20 NT hand. I wish I had used that here. Unfortunately I decided to bid it as a strong 2 suiter and opened 1D.

So the bidding went:

P - 1D - P - 1S - 2NT by Nigel Guthrie.

Now I did think of 4NT here, but Jim Forsyth will very likely bid one of Nigel's suits and partner and I have no agreement over interference.

A similar sort of sequence had occurred before when I bid 5S as a slam try, so 5S it was.

Jim bid 6C, Joan 6S, Nigel 7C and I doubled for a below average 800, 6S being a typical score, three pairs found 7S or 7NT.

This last example was a bit of a disaster against Charles and Vi.

I'd got us a bad score on the previous hand with a misguided defence (misguided : euphemism for stupid). This was just unlucky really.

Charles opens 1C which could be weak or strong, Vi bids 3C showing a good 3D pre-empt. I tried 3D and Charles bids 3NT.

Partner tries a small spade, 10 tricks made. Of course a heart (or clubs first) puts it 5 down.

Story of our night.