Thursday, July 24, 2008

Keep your eye on the ball

A world-class player declared this deal from the Spingold Knockout Teams on Wednesday.

7 6
A Q 8 2
A J 8 7 4 3
Q J 9 3 2 A 8 4
7 6 K J 5 4
K 9 6 Q 10 5
10 8 4 9 7 2
K 10 5
10 9 3
A K Q J 5 3

The bidding went 1 by South and North responded 1. South rebid 2 and North took a deep position and passed.

The opening lead was the Q. Declarer could see that he had nine tricks -- one spade, one heart, one diamond and six clubs. He could also see that these same nine tricks would be available in 3NT.

East ducked the opening lead and declarer won the K. He advanced the 9 which lost to the jack. East shifted to a diamond. When West played the king, declarer lost focus and ducked. Perhaps he was annoyed by the contract (missing game).

West returned a heart. Declarer could still take nine tricks, but he played low. East won the K, gave his partner a heart ruff. West led a spade to the ace. The defense erred at this point. A trump from East would guarantee a set. Instead East exited with a heart. Declarer had one last chance to make his contract by ruffing with the A to ruff his spade loser in the dummy. Instead, he discarded a spade and when West ruffed the trick, South was down one. Absolutely amazing.

At the other table, his opponents played in 3NT and made three for plus 400. This was a 10 IMP loser. If South had made even 2, he would have lost only 7 IMPs. So what are 3 IMPs you ask? Their team lost by 2 and was knocked out of the event.

We have had our share of Elvis impersonators here. This guy is Greg Miller and he looks like Elvis and is a good singer. His web site is found here.

Elvis sings at a show after the evening session at the Las Vegas NABC.

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