Friday, 26 April 2013

Thursday 25th April

Playing in a Howell with Gerry, came second with 58%.

 I had a bidding problem on this board against Victor and Phil.  Victor opened East 1N and Gerry as South doubled.
I can't remember what Phil bid but back to Gerry who bid 4S. Phil bid I think 5H? though 5D seems more likely but anyway what do I bid now? A pointless 4333 at the 5 level equal vulnerability.  Well I chose 5S because a) Phil figures to be void after Victor's NT opening and Gerry's 4S. b) To beat their contract Gerry has to have 3 sure tricks and avoid an end play. If he has 3 sure tricks can we not make 5S?
Well I was lucky they just go one off but Gerry ruffed the AD lead high, crossed to 8S and finessed QH, crossed to 9S and led a club.  Just two club losers and 5S made.  Most people in 4S making 11 so no advantage as no double.

 A good illustration of why you shouldn't cover until you have to.
Against Alex and Alistair, Alex opened East 1N and Alistair through heart transfer and spade bid got preference for hearts and bid 4H.
Gerry led KD won by Ace, Gerry won second heart and exited with a heart to clear Alex of trumps.  From Dummy Alex led JS and I played low, this ran to Gerry's King. A club to my King, diamond exit and Alex had to lose another spade to me.
Note if you cover JS with Q, Declarer will take Ace and drop partner's King losing just one spade.

There is nothing to this hand, just an illustration of the vagaries of bridge scoring and the luck that is inevitably involved.
The bidding is simply 2N by East, 6N by West.  The play simply involves finding the Queen of diamonds.  There is nothing you can reasonably do to improve 50-50.  If you play 3 rounds of clubs and find more spaces for the Queen in the South hand you improve the odds a little but can go more off than the rest when it is wrong as in this case.  So pure luck in making 12 or 11, half the field should get a good score, half a bad score.  Nothing is as simple as that though!
In our case I open 2D, Gerry responded 2N so played in 6N.  He got a club lead, finessed the right way and made 12 for a middling the score.  Played by East a spade lead gave two pairs 13 a non spade lead gave two pairs 11.  Then you get a pair who didn't bid it, got a spade lead, didn't go up with Q and finessed wrong (not their best hand!).  But they got a middling score. Such is Bridge.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Monday 22nd April

Playing N/S in the Celtic Sims came 3rd with 54%.  A few ups and downs as usual.

A good score by Adrianne in 3H.  Lennie opened 1D, Adrianne overcalled 3H and Sally presumably not having a negative double eventually passed, as did we all.
Sally led 8D and Lennie took King followed by Ace which Adrianne ruffed.
Three rounds of trumps and a club to the 8 which held, ruff a diamond and a second club leaves Sallyn between a rock and a hard place with only black cards left.  A club gives Adrianne two spade discards but she rightly played a spade and two spade tricks cashed meant 9 tricks for Adrianne and a good Match Point score.

Davina and Barbara got an excellent score against in 3N after 1S - 2C - 2N - 3N. Less than half the field found game.
Adrianne led a heart won by the Jack and Davina immediately played a diamond to the 9. OK better percentage is to play to the Jack but going for the diamond right away was an excellent choice. Now Adrianne in with the 10 could defeat it by playing a club, but how does she know Davina hasn't got running clubs and weaker spades? Also at Match Points passive defence is always more inviting. So another heart to the Ace and another diamond by Davina taken by me. I played my last heart. Davina unperturbed plays another diamond and has 9 tricks, well done.

 Clifford did very well against Adrianne on this hand where we are only one of three in 3N but the only ones to go down. Our bidding was 1C - 1D - 1N and a bit of a pushy 3N.
Clifford led 4S and Adrianne took immediately in Dummy to play a diamond to the King, smoothly ducked by Clifford.  Adrianne continued a diamond, she had an instinct to play the Queen but surely it is right to put in the 10.  Nope, only 8 tricks now.  Of course if Clifford puts AD on the King, Adrianne still has a guess but the duck made sure she got it wrong.
You should always try and put your Aces on Kings but in NT when Declarer is playing their suit, it is also usually good to hold up your Ace.

On the very next hand we failed to bid game.  Of course the game can't make but those who bid it did.
I opened 1H and Adrianne bid 1N passed out.  I don't agree with 1N and would have bid 2D. However now North bids 2N, South bids 3H and 4H would be the contract which must go down.  Shows what I know.
Anyway Adrianne got a spade lead (club anyone?) taken by the Queen and intelligently played Ace and QH while the spade entry remained.  Len took the King and tried a diamond.  Adrianne won the King, cashed her hearts and spade, exited from Dummy with a diamond and made 9 tricks.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Thursday 4th April

Playing E/W with Gerry came second with 54%.

Against Alex and Alistair Gerry opened a multi and rebid 2N showing 19/20.  I transferred to spades, Gerry cue bid diamonds and so I declared 4S as East.
Alistair led 6C to Jack and King, Alex returned a diamond.  I had 9 tricks with 5 trumps, AK and a diamond ruff and a heart.  Two ways to get 10, promote a club or find a doubleton AH. The hearts were extremely unlikely so I had to find a club trick.
I won the diamond, two rounds of spades and led a club towards dummy.  Alistair played 3C. Well if he started with a doubleton there is nothing I can do but play Alex for doubleton AH. However this is also consistent with four small, did he start with 10653 or 8653? Either way I just played a low club and Alex won the 10, that made me a club trick as I can ruff out his Ace.

 A thin game against Victor and Willie.  Gerry opened 1D, I bid 1N (guaranteeing clubs), 2N by Gerry and I bid game.
Willie led 4H and the rule of 11 tells you that looks good.  Victor might have the 10, but much more likely to have honour doubleton or singleton.  So I played low and Victor's Q won.  The expected club came back as Victor tabled the Jack.  I know I am getting a good score for making game and a quick calculation and look at the intermediates tells me to cover this right away.  I'll lose three clubs to go with the heart but make the rest on a heart finesse. That is exactly what happened as they cashed their three clubs.  If they only cash two and exit with say a spade, I just play a club myself.

A very competitive hand against Phyllis and Irene. Irene opened 1D and Phyllis bid 1H.  Now we have three ways of showing the other two suits.  A double obviously which will show decent values, 1N will show at least 5-5 but lacking points.  I bid the 3rd option 2N which will show this type of hand which has a lot of playability if partner has a black suit fit.
Irene bid 3D and Gerry doubled.  Phyllis bid 3H which went round to Gerry who bid 4C, back to Irene who ventured 4H. We all passed.
Whoever bought this contract at the 3 or 4 level was not going to do well.  I led QS won in dummy, Phyllis cashed AC and needed to get some ruffs.  She tried AS, Gerry ruffed and played a heart to my Ace.  I returned JS ruffed by Phyllis who ruffed a club.  So Phyllis got 5 hearts, 1 ruff, AC and AS for down two.