Friday, 25 October 2013

Thursday 24 October

Playing in a Howell with Gerry, came 2nd with 63%.

Sitting N/S got a top against Michele and Joan. I love my hand with a big major two-suiter and hear Michele open 1D. OK we're probably not making slam now but the diamond bid makes me like my hand more.  This is now worth a reverse if I'm opener, so I'm not using Michaels, I just bid 1H. Joan bids 1N.  This comes back round to me and, as planned,  I bid 2S. Joan bids 3C, Gerry 3S and I bid 4S. Michele is looking at 3 fairly certain tricks and Joan has maybe a heart and possibly something else, so she doubles.
QD lead to Ace, diamond to my King, AH, heart ruff, spade to K and Ace. Likely Michele has KQ for the double, I just need to ruff another heart.  Michele over-ruffs, diamond through but I ruff with the 10, spade to Jack, club ruff, draw last trump and claim all my hearts for 11 tricks.  I was right to love this hand.

I seem to play a lot of contracts these days with 5-0 trump breaks.  Again I'm North, John opens a Lucas 2H, Gerry doubles and Steve bids 4H.  I bid 4S to end the auction.
John leads KH which holds and follows with a heart to Steve's Ace and I ruff. Likely spades are 4-1 but I still see a straightforward 10 tricks, maybe 11. I cash AS and get the news, now is John 553 or 544? I reckon I need AD for a later entry and have to lose a ruff to Steve anyway, so play a small diamond.  John takes King and exits with 7C to my King in Dummy.  Now I lead a diamond and Steve follows, so John is 544, I need to finesse a club and let Steve ruff so I play a spade to hand and club to the 10.  Steve ruffs and has only hearts and spades left.  A heart gives away a ruff and discard so naturally he exits with a trump.  I drew the last trumps, diamond to Ace, winning diamond and AC for 10 tricks.
However, I should always go down.  When I finesse the club for Steve to ruff he should exit with a heart because I have:

           9                  KQ
          -                    -
         A9                 Q
         J9                  A5              Steve has 107 of trumps and J93 of hearts

If I ruff the heart in hand, I can't get to Dummy because Steve will ruff any minor and if I discard a club and ruff in Dummy, Steve has an extra trump, either way down 1.  It's difficult to spot when a ruff and discard is the right play.

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