Friday, October 2, 2009

Can you stand the pressure?

Playing bridge online last night, you hold:
6 4 3 2 5 3 A 4 3 K 9 6 4.

There are three passes to your right-hand opponent who opens 1. You pass, and LHO bids 2, Alerted as four-card Drury. Partner doubles, and RHO bids 4, ending the auction.

What would you lead? There's no reason to get fancy. Partner said he likes diamonds, so you lead the A, and this is what you see:
A 10 5
K 10 6 2
K 8 2
10 8 7
6 4 3 2
5 3
A 4 3
K 9 6 4

Partner encourages, so, would you continue? It's not clear what to shift to, and, besides, following what partner suggests makes him happy. You lead another, declarer wins the K (following from his hand), and leads a third round ruffed with the J.

Next, South leads the 9, and then the Q, overtaken in dummy, as partner follows to both.

Declarer plays the 7 from dummy (partner follows low), and plays the Q. You win the king (or do you?). There's no pressure. Of course, everyone in the world can go online and laugh at look at your results, but there's no pressure, right? At times like this, you probably hate Al Gore for inventing the stupid Internet. Ok, time's uP -- you've stalled long enough. What do you play?

The West at my table broke his wrist shifting to a spade. I was declarer, and that was exactly what I had hoped for (hands rotated):

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

Well, did you fall for my little trick? Yes, I might have guessed spades myself, but it was nice for West to take the pressure off me. When you play online, if you lead one suit, the opponents will almost always lead another -- that's just how they roll.

Making 4 was a score of plus 420 and 5.00 IMPs for the good guys.

The board was played 71 times, and you can see all the results here.

The BBO Handviewer presentation:

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