Friday, May 21, 2010

A better plan

Being a member of the International Bridge Press Association has its perks. Each month the IBPA newsletter has some deals by Australian Tim Bourke that are interesting. Here's one:

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

West North East South
2 Pass
Pass Dbl Pass 3
Pass 6 All Pass

North-South were playing lebensohl in this situation, so South's 3 bid showed values. North hoped his partner had nothing wasted in spades and blasted to slam. Sometimes you can't intelligently find out what you need to know. At least this approach kept the defenders in the dark -- sometimes that's worth a trick.

West led the 2, an obvious singleton. What would you do?

One line is to hope for a doubleton 10. If so, declarer can arranged to ruff two clubs high in the dummy and use his 9 to draw the last trump.

Do you see a better plan?

At the table, declarer won the A and drew three rounds of trumps. Next, he played four rounds of diamonds, discarding two spades from his hand. West was in with the fourth round, and had only clubs left. That return allowed South to win the J.

Five trump tricks (including a spade ruff in the South hand), one spade, three diamonds and three clubs added up to 12 tricks.


  1. I've read this and thought about it and finally decided I didn't have a better plan. So, I went and had a beer!

  2. Nice hand.

    Declarer should cash the club king (just to get it out of the way) before playing the fourth round of diamonds. Also, he should discard two spades from his hand on the third and fourth round of diamonds,

    Declarer will then have one spade, three hearts, three diamonds, three clubs, and two ruffs (one spade in hand and one club in dummy) for twelve tricks.

    Alvin P. Bluthman

  3. @Alvin: Thanks for your comments.