Main   Movie 5U81 by Richard Pavlicek  

An Unusual Experience


Congratulations! You are in the finals of the Timbuktu Bridge Championship and the sweet taste of victory is just one board away. The tension mounts! Are you up to the task?

None Vul

Table
S 2
H
D K Q 10 7 5 4
C A K 7 6 5 4

On the last deal, you pick up this wild collection and the opponent on your right opens 1 H. What would you bid? _____

This is the unusual notrump which shows the two lowest unbid suits — here it shows the minors. The next opponent raises hearts and opener continues to game, as partner keeps quiet. The bidding has gone:

West

3 H
North

Pass
East
1 H
4 H
South
2 NT
?

Are you ready to give up? What would you do now? _____

With a typical 5-5 hand you would pass, but you don’t get dealt 6-6 every day. It pays to keep bidding with wild shape. You would still like to know which minor partner is longer in, so it is a clever strategy to repeat the unusual notrump bid to ask partner to choose.

Your left-hand opponent doubles, and this is passed back to you.

Does partner’s pass mean that he wants to play 4 NT doubled? _____

Partner simply shows that he has no preference between the minors (equal length and strength) so the decision is up to you. What do you do now? _____

When choosing a trump suit from equal-length suits, the intermediate cards (Q-J-10-9) are more important than top cards (A-K). Hence you should choose diamonds.

Undaunted, West doubles again, so the full auction has been:

West

3 H
Dbl
Dbl
North

Pass
Pass
All Pass
East
1 H
4 H
Pass
South
2 NT
4 NT
5 D

West leads the H J and partner puts down a great dummy, considering that he could be completely broke. This is what you see:

5 D× South

S A 10 8 7 5 4
H 4 3 2
D J 8
C J 8
Lead: H JTable
S 2
H
D K Q 10 7 5 4
C A K 7 6 5 4

How many “top tricks” do you count from the start? _____

You have five natural trump tricks (barring a 5-0 break), two top clubs and one spade. Which suit will you rely on for additional tricks? _____

That was easy I hope. After ruffing the opening lead, will you lead trumps right away? _____

You don’t know how the minors will break, and you are likely to aid your cause by ruffing a club. Which club will you lead first? _____

All follow. You next lead the S 2 to dummy’s ace, then the C J on which East plays the nine. Which club do you play? _____

Good thing! The C Q drops from West. You next lead the C 7 and West discards a spade. What will you play from dummy? _____

Are your remaining clubs now established? _____

Which card do you lead next from dummy? _____

Assume East follows with a low card. Which card to you play from your hand? _____

This is the key play! You must overtake else West would duck the jack. Then you would have to tap your hand, shortening your trumps, and you would fail. Try it.

If you win this trick, what do you lead next? _____

West wins the ace (East discards a heart) and returns a heart which you ruff, then cash the D 10. What do you lead next? _____

You are in control, and no matter when West ruffs you will lose just one more trick and make 5 D.

Below are the E-W hands:

S 9 6 3
H J 10 9 7
D A 9 6 2
C Q 2
TableS K Q J
H A K Q 8 6 5
D 3
C 10 9 3
TopMain

Answers

Bidding:2 NT
4 NT
No
5 D
Play:8
C 
No
C A
C K
D 8
Yes
D J
D Q
D K
C 7
TopMain

© 2013 Richard Pavlicek