Friday, October 8, 2010

Driving a coupe

Trump coup: to capture without loss or to reduce the trick-taking power of an opponent's trump holding by any combination of trump reduction and/or arranging effectively to lead a plain-suit card through that opponent in an ending.

[From the Bridge World Glossary, see here. Also see the Wikipedia definition here.]

Two weeks ago, there was a regional tournament in Tunica at Sam's Town Casino. Because bridge players like to gamble, it was well-attended.

I played Saturday in the Open Pairs with Cindy Bernstein. We had a big game in the first session and around average in the second to come in fifth. I forgot our system on one board for a 0. Then, in fourth seat I had a 12-count with a singleton spade and chose to pass it out for 0.5 matchpoints -- ouch! If I turn those two around we win.

This was my favorite deal of the day (rotated).

Q 8 3
K 4
K J 10 9
K 10 9 5
K J 7 4 2
A 7 2
7 5
Q 8 3
West North East South
Pass Pass
1 Pass 1 1
3 3 All Pass

West led the Q. How would you tackle it?

I won the lead in dummy and played the Q, taken by East with her ace. She returned a heart and I won this in hand to advance the 7. West grabbed his ace (so I put him on the Q as well) and he exited a low club. I put in the 10, jack and I won the queen. What is going on?

First, how do you place the high-card points? East showed 6 and West showed 16-18, counting distribution. There just aren't enough points to go around. Somebody's cheatin' and lyin' or maybe they slipped in a pinochle deck.

Because West has only the A, A Q and Q J, I decided he must have a singleton spade to have the values for his jump rebid.

I ruffed my heart loser and advanced the 8. I had decided to let it ride, but East made it easy by covering with the 9. I won this and led a diamond to the jack before cashing the K. East could see it was a give-up play to ruff, so she discarded a club, as did I. I led dummy's last diamond and ruffed, then exited with a club at trick 11. West took his ace, but my last two cards were J 7 positioned over East's 10 6. Life is sweet.

Here are all four hands:

You can click on "next" to advance through the play.


  1. Nice on line of play. It's always a great feeling to gun the oppo with less ammo.
    Mind you I'm a tad curious as to why I'm not listed in your other bridge blogs to read ? You're one of the few decent sorts who makes an effort to make a comment or two in praise of my work. Yours HBJ

  2. You need to write these recaps in English. lol jk

  3. @HBJ: I joined as a follower of your site, and I guess I forgot to add you to my blog roll -- I'll fix it.

    @VeryJosie: Bridge has its own language, unfortunately, which makes it hard for people to warm up to.

  4. I apologize for my tardiness but I like the new look. NH, sir.

  5. @Lucypher: Thanks. The masthead is glass from a Chihuly exhibit that I shot in Nashville TN.

  6. Hi Memphis, TX for being true to your word. You obviously have quite a following. I wish I had. Anyway, it's good getting to know you through your stories and comments. Yours HBJ

  7. Glad to see you got a coup. I had a coupe, once...a 1950 Plymouth, dark green, with wood-grain interior. It was lovely!