One hundred years ago the world was saddened by the death of Edvard Grieg. The famous Norwegian composer is best remembered for his piano opus of my title, which suggests he may have been a bridge player, albeit obsessed with a minor suit. Grieg was raised in Bergen, Norway, where he composed a minor duet (3 and 3 ?) later to be dubbed Bergen Raises. Hmm
Is Marty a thief?
At the age of 15, Grieg enrolled in the famous Leipzig Conservatory, no doubt accounting for his conservative bidding. Later he was nicknamed the Chopin of the North, which historians believe to be a tribute to his creative dummy play. Even more convincing was his affinity for the key of A minor, with its chord notes spelling ACE. I rest my case.
Now its your turn to play a few notes. Each of these problems presents a concerto, er, contract in A minor. As South, simply choose your play from the options (A-F) listed. Each option will be rated on a 1-to-10 scale per my judgment.
Bidding is standard, and your opponents use standard leads and signals. For a reference see Standard American Bridge. Assume all players are experts.
In May 2007 these six problems were presented as a contest with 761 entrants from 110 locations. The contest is closed, but you can still quiz yourself and find your score immediately. If youre lucky, you might even win a valuable prize.*
*Prizes include a grand piano by Steinway, PavCo & Son (Rich is building it now) and 12 books of Grieg Classics. Winners must beat least 18 years of age. Prizes void where inhibited by Law. Residents and non-residents of Bergen, Norway are ineligible.
Imagine if Grieg were a teenage employee of PavCo Diamonds
Hed be a minor miner in A minor.
East returns the 6, you ruff, and West plays the 7. What next?
A. Lead the 2B. Win A; K; finesse QC. Win K; finesse QD. Duck a diamondE. Win A; lead QF. Lead the 10
A. Win A; A; lead JB. Win A; finesse JC. Win A; lead 9D. Win A; lead 4E. Duck; win A; A; lead JF. Duck; win A; finesse J
Note: East plays the K on second club.
After winning the K, what next?
A. Lead spade and pitch diamondB. Ruff spade; win A; ruff spadeC. Ruff spade; duck a diamondD. Ruff spade; win J; ruff spadeE. Win A; lead 3F. Lead the 3
Note: If you lead a spade, East plays the 8.
East shifts to the 3 (West plays 7) won by dummys jack. What next?
A. Ruff heart; cash AB. Lead J to ace; lead 5C. Run J (loses); win A; AD. Run J (loses); win A; finesse 10E. Run J (loses); finesse Q; win AF. Run J (loses); finesse Q; 10
A. Win K; lead QB. Win K; A; run QC. Win K; AD. Win A; lead 10E. Win A; lead Q to aceF. Win A; run Q
A. Win A; A; ruff spade; lead 4B. Win A; lead 3C. Win A; KD. Duck; win A; A; ruff spadeE. Duck; win A; ruff heartF. Duck; win A; K
Click to see how you did
© 2007 Richard Pavlicek