Thursday, 30 August 2012

Wednesday 29 August

Playing N/S with Gerry scored a poor 49%. Started badly, failed to recover.
Board 1 was a difficult decision for me, turned out wrong but mainly due to excellent defence.

 Gerry opened South 1D, what is my best bid? 2D will normally invoke some bidding from opponents.  However if partner is strong 1H will get 2N from partner. Probably 2D pays off in this situation, but I did what I always do and bid 1H.  Gerry bid the inevitable 2N and there he played.
Paul led KC and switched to 9H to Nat's Queen.  Nat returned JC to Q and Ace.  Paul led a small heart.  Gerry didn't want to be duped here and tried the King.  Nat took the Ace, played a club and that was 4 clubs and 3 hearts to the defence. Those in 2D scored a joint top though E/W should compete even to 3H forcing 4D down 1 by South.
 One of our few bright spots against Mary and Moira.  Mary opened 1C, Moira 1S, Mary reversed with 2D, 2N - 3N.  I led 9H.  Moira took the Ace. That seems a decent line to me, unblock the Ace now, set up clubs and hope they come back hearts.  Moira now led a small club to the Jack and I took the Queen. I continued a heart to the King, but Gerry can see the lie of that suit and now switches to a small spade.  We cash 3 spades for 1 down.
 On the next board I missed bidding game, though just as well. Mary opened 1C, round to me and I doubled.  Mary bids 1S and Gerry 2H.  I thought about this but with waht looked like 15 plus a singleton I decided I have to give my partner some latitude and passed the 2H.  That was wrong though, I should have bid 3H. Anyway Moira correctly led the spade to Mary's Queen and Gerry dropped the Jack.  Mary led back a club to Dummy's King.  Gerry cashed AK of trumps and led a diamond to Mary's Ace. Mary exits with another club.  Gerry cashes QH and plays diamonds getting rid of his two spades as Moira trumps the 5th.  A club to lose for 9 tricks. Much better than 4H down 2 which probably happens if I bid 3H.

There were a lot of slams going about on the evening, this wasn't one of them, though one pair got away with it.
Gerry opened his monster 1D, Moira overcalled 1H and I bid 1S.  Mary bid 2H and Gerry 4NT.  I showed one keycard and Gerry assuming its colour was black bid 6S.
Moira with 2 Aces doubled.  Mary led ..... KC unfortunately, 1 down.
Margaret McCallum playing with Ann McLeod was in 6D doubled.  Now it doesn't matter which Ace is led, in fact surely anything but a heart defeats this.  What was led? The diamond 4, 6D wins in dummy, AH throw the club, get the spade right 6Dx made.

I thought I made a big mistake in defending 4H against Vi.  Nobody made this contract though it is unbeatable, just play on clubs.
Anyway I led JS ducked all round.  I can see continuing spades gives away 10 tricks as spades will get set up and declarer just loses a club, a diamond and a spade.  So I switch to a trump. Vi wins in hand and returns a diamond, I take Ace and play a second trump. Vi cashes KD and plays a club to K and my Ace (playing a third trump and cashing JD to throw a club is no good as there are 2 more spades to lose).  Anyway I unthinkingly returned a club, Vi wins, ruffs a club, back to third heart and club winners to throw the spades. I thought that was a stupid return of a club, if I just play a spade now to Gerry's Queen if Vi ruffs she can cash a diamond and a club but must lose two spades. However she doesn't. Ruff the QS, cash KC, ruff a club, draw last trump and exit with a spade to Gerry's Ace.  Gerry is endplayed with only two small diamonds in his hand to give Vi the contract.

Missed a game here though only two pairs managed to bid it.
Against Issy and Willie I opened 1NT 3rd in hand, Gerry bid 2C and raised my 2H to 3H.  Well I can't see even 3H being straightforward and passed.
Issy led KD and switched to a trump to King and Ace.  I ruffed a diamond, finessed a club, ruffed a diamond, finessed a club.  11 tricks, very straightforward.  Why didn't I see that?

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Monday 27 August

Playing N/S with Adrianne came 3rd in our section with a Butler score of 22.

Early on there were two 4S in a row, the first we failed to bid but made four, the second we bid but it goes down!
Against the two Davids, D Cree opened 1D and I bid 2N, D Young did 3D and Adrianne a pass or correct 3H.  I corrected to 3S and there I played. Two diamonds were cashed and Jack of clubs came through.  I rose with Ace, felled QS in two and gave up club for 10 tricks.

The next board was against Steve and Marilyn. After two passes I opened 1D, Steve overcalled a heart and Adrianne doubled showing 4 spades.  Marilyn bid 2H alerting me to the fact that Adrianne has at most two, so I bid 4S.
Steve led 10D and Adrianne put down a singleton which was a bit of a blow.  If the lead is doubleton and AH onside I can lose a diamond, a heart and a club.
I won AD, led a heart to Ace and 4S came back to 10 and King.  I cashed KH, back to AS, ruffed a heart and exited with a club. I ruffed club return but I'm in a pickle now.  I can't ruff a small diamond now with the Queen as that leaves Steve probably with JS and heart winners. I tried KD, ruffed by Jack and Queen but had to lose two diamonds.
I think I have to play a small diamond from hand at trick 2.  I will surely make 9 with a chance of 10.

 Stole a good score here against John and Rob. After 3 passes I opened 1H and John came in 1S.  Adrianne bid 1N, Rob 2S and I ventured 3N.  If Adrianne has 3 hearts she would have raised to 2H unless she had a decent spade holding.
If Rob leads QS then Adrianne will get her two spade tricks. However he correctly led 3S to John's King which Adrianne ducked.  John led back 7S,  Adrianne played small but Rob put up the Queen.  A spade back gave Adrianne her two tricks and 9 altogether.
Disaster for me here.  Adrianne put us into 6D, a decent enough contract and we are the only ones in our section to bid it. A heart lead was flagged by the bidding and Alan led 8H to Myra's Ace and I won the return with my King. A finesse of a club then try to ruff out KC is not a bad line because there will be people in 3N who need that club finesse and you'll get the same score as them if it is wrong.
Or a complete cross ruff is possible, the hand that might be able to over ruff might not have JD. This includes the possibility of bringing down KC in three so that is what I played for. 9C to Ace, QC not covered so ruffed.  Alan played 7 then 8 of clubs. I was sure King was now falling so just crossed to AD, ruffed a club and King fell.  HOWEVER without stopping to think I crossed to QD and Alan showed out.  My only trump left is KD and I still have to ruff a heart leaving Myra with the trump master.  I have to cash KD, play Ace and another spade, ruffed. Ruff a heart, ruff a spade to get back to dummy to draw last trump and cash clubs, BUT Myra will over ruff the spade.  I cannot make this. I needed to finesse 9C!!!
The next board wasn't as good as it could have been some N/S got good scores e.g. 5S doubled. Alan opened 1C and Adrianne overcalled a strong 2S, Myra doubled. Now any sensible person would bid 4S with my hand but inexplicably I decided to pass to see what happens.  Alan bid 5C is what happened.  Adrianne pauses a little and passes but I am sure, even red against green that I have a 5S bid.  Alan bids 6C and Adrianne doubles. I still think seriously about bidding 6S (this is the guy who passes 2S).  If Adrianne has 6 spades and 4 clubs (and 16 points) all the better, but decide to pass.  Adrianne leads AS and Myra amazingly puts down 4 clubs. We got our heart and 2 diamonds for 300.  Adrianne wasn't tested with the diamonds in a 6S contract.  On the bidding, knowing Myra has exactly 4 hearts and at most 4 clubs, then discovering 1 spade, she will certainly know where the diamond length is.

Missed an opportunity for a game at the end.  Adrianne opened 1D and Jack overcalled 1H.  I bid 1S, Robert 2H and Adrianne 2S.  I tried 2N but Adrianne with minimum passed.
Heart lead to Ace, small heart back taken with my 10. I played the spades wrongly Ace then finesse Jack. Robert played another heart to Queen and King. I ran the spades, Jack letting go a heart, cashed another heart.  Took AD for my 8th trick, exited wwith QD.  Defenders only had clubs left and I made King.  So despite getting diamonds and spades wrong I made 9.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Friday 23rd August

Playing N/S with Gerry came 1st with 60%.  Didn't have a great start especially when I put Gerry into an unmakeable slam. 
Having scored a zero against Colin and Helen with a poor defence we got back with this board. Helen opened 1C, I passed and Colin bid 1S.  Gerry came in 1N, this is take out for the other two suits, not good enough for a double, more distributional. Helen bid 2S, I bid 3H and it was passed out.

Spade lead to Ace followed by spade to King.  I played club to K and A.  Helen tried Ace and another diamond (I'll get the suit right anyway as Helen needs the Ace for her opener). That was me with 10 tricks after a spade ruff.

We had a good set against Paul and Bob.  Paul opened 1D, Gerry doubled, Bob passed and I bid 2C round to Gerry who bid 3NT.  Bob led 9S and Gerry immediately led QC.  Paul took this and attacked dummy's heart entry.  However Gerry cheaply won 8H and when the next club was ducked simply played on diamonds for 10 tricks.

On the next board Paul opened a strong NT and through Puppet Stayman Bob raised him to 3N.
Gerry found the great lead of 7C, small from dummy and I carelessly put on the 8 for count (I read the lead as 97x). Surprised to hold the trick I switched to a spade.  Paul won, knocked out AD, I tried another spade which went to Gerry's Queen, club back and Paul has his 9 tricks exactly.
Most South's led a spade won by the Jack in dummy.  Our score was a top.  We would have got our 4 tricks a lot quicker if I had just followed with the 6C at trick one.

An interesting hand against Victor and Elizabeth.  We were pushed into 4S when Elizabeth twice used a takeout double and I could show a good hand with spades and diamonds and allowing Gerry to show some support.
Victor led a heart to 9, Q and A.  I played KS to Ace.  Elizabeth cashed KH then KC then tried QC which I ruffed high.  I played high spade to the Queen, cashed JH to throw a diamond.  I now ruffed a club to fell the Ace and crossed with a small spade to the 7.  Cashed JC throwing a second diamond and finessed QD for 10 tricks.
Of course all the time Elizabeth had doubleton KD and a simple finesse would have given me 10 tricks by ruffing my 4th diamond, but I didn't know that until the end!

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Wednesday 22 August

Playing N/S with Gerry we won the Men's Frestival pairs with 62%.
Against Mike and Steve Steve opened 1D and Gerry chanced 1NT. This stole the contract.  Mike led a heart ducked to the Queen and Gerry led a diamond to the Jack and King.  Steve played Ace and another heart, Gerry led another diamond to 10 and Ace.  Gerry was given his diamond and so had 3 red tricks, now he tried the spades but their were only 3 so one down. 1D passed out was common or spade contract N/S going down.

Not so good a score on this board against Ronald and John. Ronald opened 1H which came round to me.  I want to double but can't bear hearing 2D from partner so I bid 1NT. Gerry bid 2NT which I alerted and bid 3D.  Gerry bid 3NT. (we have now agreed that normal system is on here!) Anyway I would bid 3NT if he raised via Stayman. However no chance, I won 3rd heart, led the club, Ronald took the Ace and 2 down.  If I do double Gerry's best bid looks to be 2H, then I bid 2NT and same result.  Difficult to find 5C.

Got back with this board though. I opened 1C, Ronald 1H and Gerry 3C.  John bid 3H which I fancied defending but Gerry is just as likely to have 5 clubs to the Ace and nothing else and finding a 5th trick might be difficult.  I bid 4C.
Ronald led KH, I took straight away, cashed AK of diamonds led a club to 10 and Q, ruffed a diamond. Now everything looks great.  JC to King and Ace, 9C, take my 2 diamonds and 10 tricks.

This board was arrow switched so I am West.  Gerry has a system for finding minor fits over 1NT.  As we use Stayman then jump in our 5 card suit when we are 5-4 in the majors, that leaves a transfer to hearts and then 2S redundant.  Gerry uses this sequence to initiate a Baron sequence.
So Gerry opens 1NT, I see a minor suit slam looming so I bid 2Da, Gerry 2H, I bid 2S (not a!).  Gerry bids 3H I bid 3N and hope he doesn't bid 4H and yes he passes.  On the 5S lead he made 12 tricks for an average.  Missed the laydown 6C/D and 13 as long as you play AK of diamonds first. Unfortunately this convention probably won't come up again for 2 years! Playing with Adrianne our bidding would go 1N - 3C - 4C - 6C

Against Alec and Raymond I got a bit carried away with my hand and led us to a bad score, however it was a bit unlucky.
I opened 1H, Gerry bid 1S, now 12 points isn't quite good enough for a splinter but what is my sensible rebid? So I bid 4C, Alec doubled (?), Gerry redoubled.  Not what I wanted to hear, AC isn't any use.  I bid 4S hoping to put a dampener on things but Gerry loves his heart holding and 5th spade so via 4N we a re in 6S.  Raymond led KD so it is now 50-50 and the trump finesses loses for 1 down. Unlucky, if the K or Q of diamonds had been is Alec's hand we might have avoided that lead, or trump finesse could have been right.  However 6H is better as Alec is a little less likely to find the diamond lead and a long spade and AC give two diamond discards.

On the next board Raymond opened 1D. I am too strong for our Michaels so bid 1H, Alec bid 3D, round to Raymond who bid 3N. I have 3 options. Quiet pass hoping for 1 down, double hoping even more for 1 down. Or bid 4C hoping we have a sacrifice.  I thought we could defeat but opted for the quiet route of pass.  KC lead, odd number from partner, AC, good not singleton and 1 down it was.
We make 4H, 4C was the correct option. Though would Raymond double or bid 5D which is of course 1 off?

Against Bill and Rod we had a tricky sequence.
P  -  P  -  1H  -  2S
x  -  P  -  2N  -  3D
x  -  3S  - 4C  - passed out.
Gerry won the QS lead in dummy and led a club to 8 and King. Winning the spade return Gerry read the hand perfectly, diamond to Ace, run JH, run 10H, diamond ruff, AH, heart ruff, diamond ruffed by 9 and Ace, heart ruff to get 10 tricks.
Against John and Willie, John opened 2S, Gerry doubled.  I nearly bid 3C, but opted for conservatism and bid a Lebensohl 2N.  Gerry forgot and bid 3N.  However with 20 points his bid would be 3S and I would bid 3N anyway.

This contract has of course no chance on any spade lead, but John led 2D. I was cheeky enough to finesse, Ace and another club.  Now fingers crossed Willie doesn't have QS, 8S came through, taken by QS. John returns a small spade, 11 tricks.  In the Women's half were in 3N all going down on the spade lead, half were in the sensible 5C.  In the Men's 6 are in 3N, 3 make, 3 go 2 down on the spade lead. Russell and Len are the only ones who play in 5C.  If I had bid 3C we might well have ended in 6C.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Tuesday 21 August

Playing N/S with Adrianne in the festival Pairs we came just above average.  Got off to a bad start against Bobby and Michelle who went on to win.  It always pays to get into the bidding and Bobby made things a bit more awkward for us with an off centre double

Adrianne opened 1S, I bid 1N, Bobby doubled and Adrianne redoubled (shows 15+).  Michelle bid 2C and I bid 3N.  I would have liked to bid 2N, but that would deny a maximum and Adrianne with say 17 would have passed.
Bobby led 2D, Michelle cashed KQ and returned TH.  I thought about ducking this to set up 4 heart tricks but that would would have given 5 tricks to the defence.  I took the Ace in dummy. I saw Bobby's hand as probably AQx, Jxxx, Axxx, xx so really they can only get 4 tricks (3 diamonds and a spade), but how do I get 9? Well you cash AC and enter hand with QC (Bobby discards a spade) to lead spade to J then back to hand with KH (don't cash Q) and lead another spade.  Bobby is stuck with bare AQ.  You have 3 spades, 3 clubs, 2 hearts and Bobby has to give you a diamond or a heart.  I failed by cashing QH.  I knew his hand exactly when he discarded a spade but couldn't see I didn't need QH, its only when I see the hands now but then that's what makes a good player.

The next board we went to 3N, 2 off for a bottom, 3S was the par score, 4S one off would have been fine though some people were allowed to make game.

This was an interesting board all round.  At our table against Bob and Cathy Bob opened 1S, Cathy 1N, Bob 2D and Cathy 2S.  Bob thought about chancing more but settled for 2S.  I led KH and Adrianne showed an even number so I continued a small heart to J, Q and ruff. So how do you play this at Pairs? There are two entries to dummy to lead diamonds and with luck you make 10 but on this exact layout only 8. Play two rounds of spades then 10D and 10 tricks is very unlikely 9 tricks quite likely but 8 still possible. Bob took the optimistic line and crossed in trumps, ran 10D and I took Q, cashed A and gave Adrianne a ruff who then exits with a heart and waits for her club.
However what is more interesting is my pass. It doesn't really look like a take out double to me but with nice hearts probably I should.  Now Adrianne is going to go to 3H and force 3S from Bob. How would he have played it now?  Unfortunately I didn't test him but I think the same way.  It is me who should have the doubleton spade so if I have AQ diamonds you can't stop the ruff anyway. So as I said at the beginning it always pays to get into the bidding.

Our last set was board 1 and 2 against David and Katie. The board was rotated so I was West.
We got into a bit of a muddle which resulted in a top. Adrianne opened 1H and I bid 2D. Most people would bid 3C with Adrianne's hand but giving herself a minus for void in my suit she rebid 2H. I tried 3C as what looked to be the best forcing bid and Adrianne could just have said 3N but this hand could now have more so bid 4C. I tried 4H, Adrianne 5C. I thought 5H would score better if we can make at the 5 level but bid 5D first expecting Adrianne to bid hearts, but no, she is more sensible than that and bid 6C.
Katie led AS and switched to a heart, but I can't go wrong and 6C is unbeatable.  Sorry David and Kate, a sensible player would have passed 5C.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Monday 20 August

Playing N/S with Adrianne came in below average with an aggregate score of -2200 but -2000 would be about the par score.  we were unfortunate in that our opponents found all their games.

An interesting board for E/W here.  3NT is the only making game.  It looks like a spade lead spells disaster for declarer, but win the Queen and run 10C. Now win the 3rd heart, try clubs, give up another club and you have 9 tricks.
At our table David Cree opened a Benji 2D, David Young bid 3D and DC bid 3NT. I led the natural KH, David took it immediately, AD, over to QS, the diamonds run and 13 tricks.
A few E/W were in a not unreasonable 6C but no chance on the trump break.

Bobby and Ian got two big scores against us. On the first I opened 1D, Ian bid 2C and Bobby bid 2NT raised to 3. I led 4S and there were 10 tricks.  Only one other pair found this unbeatable game.

On the next board I doubled a 4S thinking it was two way as I didn't know if Adrianne was weak or middle to strong.  Anyway it wasn't clear and Adrianne left it in which cost us an extra 300 points. However some people got to play the 5 level sacrifice without even being doubled.  Not even a real sacrifice because on proper defence it goes 4 off!  Anyway those two boards cost us dear.

Bill and Norman bid and made two games us.  The second was only found by about one third of the field. Norman opened an off centre 1NT, Bill transferred and raised to 3S, Norman bid 3N and Bill changed to 4S.

I led JC but with the hearts lying well and diamonds running anyway there was only that trick plus two trump tricks.

Another nail in the coffin

Friday, 17 August 2012

Festival Teams 16 August

Playing with Michelle Alexander and partnering her husband Mike who played with Raymond we ended up run away winners with a score of 168 from ten 3 board matches. Five 20-0 a 19-1 a 14, two 12s and an 11.  I've never had a score remotely like it.  Michelle and I had a very good game and got all our hands correct while our opponents made a number of mistakes.  Mike and Raymond then came back with a fantastic score card.

One of our 20-0 was against David Weir's team. we played against John DiMambro and Ronald Gaffin.  These two hands illustrate how everything just went right on the night.
As North I opened 1H, Michelle raised to 2H, I tried with 2S and Michelle more or less max bid 4H.
Ronald makes the safe lead of a heart, I drew trump where John showed some interest in clubs and ending in dummy I ran JS to the King. Ronald went for Ace and another club now. Winning KC I played Ace and another diamond, Ronald took the King but with the QS onside I now had 10 tricks. Extremely lucky that all the cards lay so well. 2H made 10 at the other table.

Even luckier on the next board. John opened 1D and I overcalled 1S.  Ronald bid 2C and Michelle raised the ante with 3S.  John doubled and I figured we have no spade tricks in defence, maybe AQ hearts are lying well, but they might be making lots of minor tricks as I can't expect much from Michelle.  Anyway I though I'll bid 4S to give Ronald a guess about which minor to bid or whether it makes. Ronald doubled and defence started with two diamonds, I ruffed the second and led KS to Ace.  Another diamond ruffed, crossed to QS finessed QH, AH, give up a club and cross ruff my way to 10 tricks.  Very unexpected, not least by me! 4D by our partners made 10 at the other table.

Another of our typical good fortune here against Irene and Phyllis.  At the other table Sylvia and Louise are in 3NT by North.  Raymond led a heart and our partners took the first 7 tricks for 150.
Michelle opened 1S, I bid 1N, Michelle 2N, 3S by me and 4S by Michelle.
Phyllis led 10C which Michelle ran to her Ace.  A small spade went to Q and Ace.  Irene reurned a club, the lead could have been from KT9 or a singleton but that was the last chance to put a heart through.  Michelle actually won the King, led another spade to Phyllis' King.  A diamond back, draw last trump, run diamonds discarding a heart and 10 tricks.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Monday 13 August

Playing N/S with Adrianne just got above average with a Butler score of 2. Didn't do well on part scores, mainly because we bid unmakeable games!

We did get off to a good start against Ian and Ivor
Adrianne opened 1H and I bid 1S, Adrianne raised to 4S. I have a 7 loser hand so thought I could at least make a slam try and we would hopefully be safe at the 5 level.  So I cue bid 5D and Adrianne was happy to bid 6S.
It looks as if the contract depends on a diamond finesse but I got the natural KC lead.  I took the Ace, cashed AH, ruffed a heart high, trump to Ace, ruffed a heart high, trump to King, ruffed a heart and exited with JC.  East is now end played to lead a diamond or give a ruff and diamond discard.

Defence is of course difficult, it is so easy to let contracts make.  Moira and Mary bid this 1C - 1H - 2D - 3D - 3S - 4D - 5D.  I led AH, ruffed.  Now if I had been declarer I would have cashed AQ diamonds then led AC.  South would have ruffed and a spade switch (or a heart) would knock out my 2nd entry ensuring clubs can't be set up.
Moira though played KS at trick 2.  I took the Ace, now which card can I play to let this contract make? Yes, I led QC and Adrianne ruffed.  A heart back could still have beaten this, but Adrianne returned a spade. Now two rounds of diamonds, AK of clubs, ruff a club and a heart ruff back to make all the clubs. Nobody else managed to make game, well done Moira, or badly done me.

Interesting board at the end against Winnie and Katie. I opened 1D.  Difficult to know what to bid with the South hand, a lot to be said for 5D, but Adrianne chose 1H.  Katie bid a spade and I bid 3C.  Winnie bid 3S and Adrianne now bid 5D. I'm not sure where all this bidding is coming from but I am trusting my partner and was going to bid 6D when Katie came in with a double.  So I redoubled.

Nothing in the play.  Winnie led JS to my Queen.  I took 2 rounds of trumps, exited with a heart, won the spade return and can claim the rest on a cross ruff.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Wednesday 8 August

Playing N/S with Gerry scored a poor 49% mainly due to 3 complete bottoms I contrived to score. One would have been a swing to a top , 3Sx which really cannot fail, in fact you can make 10 but 9 is fairly easy. I made 8 and I am not going to describe how, it still haunts me.

Anyway I knew my brain wasn't in gear after board 1.

Against Paul and Nat I opened 1S, Gerry bid 2D. Now I wanted to bid 3C but in theory with 14 points I should rebid 2S.  However this is a much better hand than the usual 1S -2S rebid. Anyway I decided a slight underbid was better than a slight overbid and rebid 2S.  Gerry bid 3NT and made 12.  If I had bid 3C we would have been in slam.
It looks as if the slam needs the club finesse but any lead other than an unlikely Ace and another spade gives away the 12th trick.

We did get a good score against Moira and Mary due to Gerry's astute defence.  Mary opened 1NT and Moira went through Stayman to 3NT.  Gerry led 6S to Jack, Queen and Ace.  Running 10C, covered or not, will make 10 tricks but Mary chose AC and run the Jack, I discouraged diamonds.  Gerry now switched to 3H to my King and I returned a small heart.  Mary has a pure guess but tried the 9.  Unlucky, 2 off.

Here was one of my horrors against Colin and Helen. Third in hand I opened 1NT, Colin doubles, Gerry transfers to spades and I am in 2S doubled.
The defenders take their obvious 2 diamonds, 2 hearts, heart ruff and 3 spade tricks for 3 down.
-500 is a disaster.

Gerry got us another good score against Charles and Vi.  I opened a Lucas 2H and Gerry ended in 3NT.
Vi led a small diamond to Q and A. Gerry now made a heart trick, finessed a spade, made a diamond trick and ran his spades for 10 tricks.  Nearly everyone else in 4S either making 10 or going off.
Of course 3N has no chance on a club lead.

Anyway Charles got the score back on the next board.

As East he opens 3C, Vi bids 3S and Charles 3N.  Gerry leads the natural 10H won by the Jack.  Charles plays Ace and another club, I peter fully expecting Charles to play the King, but no, he finesses the Jack -- if he had had 7 clubs he would have surely have played King!
Anyway that was 11 tricks.  A diamond lead would only have held it to 10.

Finally just to prove my brain still wasn't in gear near the end.  Against Mike and Bobby.  Mike opened East 1D, Bobby 2C, Mike 2D and Bobby 4D passed out.

Gerry led AS and switched to 2H.  I took Ace and returned JH.  Mike sets up clubs and makes 11 tricks.

OK 2H slightly puts me off, but what does Mike have? No points in clubs, AQ diamonds, maybe JS.  He must have KQ hearts.  Did I even think about that?

It is blatantly obvious that I must try to stop clubs being set up and with 3 trumps one moment's thought says RETURN A SPADE.
(actually 11 tricks still makes by just ruffing another spade -- but I should still have stopped to think)
Not my best evening's bridge.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012


Played in a 3 day Mixed Pairs event. Unfortunately had a terrible first day finishing with 40%, improved with 52% and 54% the other 2 days to end with 48.5%.  They use Scrolling Results and about half way through day 1 we look up to see ourselves 3rd last with 36%, very depressing.

It is difficult to get started having to call for “petit pique” or “roi de trefle” etc. as well as trying to figure out what you have in a suit when you look at RV9. Anyway although we didn’t do well when we went over the hands we saw that we were incredibly unlucky with opponents just finding the right contract / lead against us.

I got away with my bid on this board. North opened a weak 2S and Adrianne bid 3D, South bid 3S.  What on earth do I bid with my hand? We play 2N Lebensohl over weak 2s, so Adrianne's hand is quite strong and this is the minimum I can expect.  Still what is best by me, maybe double but it probably goes for 300.  Maybe Adrianne can find 3N with one spade guard, but she won't know there are 6 club tricks.  I just crossed my figures and bid 4H.  A spade and two hearts to lose, good score.

John was the only English player we played against.  In fact he said he had been a visiting lecturer at Strathclyde. This was typical of our luck on the day.
Their bidding went 1C – 1D – 1N – 3N, Madame didn’t care to play in a major.  Adrianne can’t find the heart lead which could have defeated it and with diamonds 3-3, 9 tricks were there.  The field of course bid the ‘sensible’ 1C – 1D – 1N – 3H – 4H which is unmakeable.

This hand though was my fault against the eventual winners.  There were a number of kibbitzers which made it rather galling.

After 2 passes South opened 1D.  We play intermediate jumps when both green, however lacking filling in spades I could have bid 1S, but 2S it was.  Passed round to South who has an automatic double, passed out.
Diamond lead to Ace, spade to the 10, another diamond to my King.  I ran JC, ducked. Another club to QKA. South played 3rd club and I discarded a heart but two down unavoidable for a bottom.