Friday, April 15, 2011

Bridge Blog 407: Slam dunk

          Usually the hands I remember are problem hands, but this one I played on Wednesday with Celine Murray was no problem at all. All you have to do is bid it. Board 13, all vulnerable. I’m West, Celine is East. Our opponents are the best players in the room – Judi Marshall sitting North; Bev Cohen, back for a few weeks from her new home in Ohio, sitting South. North is dealer and she passes. Celine ponders her hand for a moment and opens 3 No Trump.
          Can she really be bidding 3 No Trump, I wonder. Does she really have 25 to 27 high card points? Well, if she does, then there’s only one thing to do, holding this hand:

          Spades: Q-J-10-9-6; Hearts: K-6-4-2; Diamonds: Q-4-2; Clubs: 8.

          Eight high card points, extra point for the five-card Spade suit. Add that to Celine’s 25 to 27 points and it’s slam. So I bid it – 6 No Trump. Bev Cohen leads the Ace of Spades and it’s our only loser. The rest is a lay-down. Here’s Celine’s hand:

          Spades: K-3; Hearts: A-7; Diamond: A-K-8-5; Clubs: A-K-Q-7-4.

          Hmm, not quite 25 points, is it? Nevertheless, it works – four winning Spades, three Diamonds, three Clubs, two Hearts. Here are the other hands:

          Spades: 8-5-4-2; Hearts: Q-10-9-8-5; Diamond: 7; Clubs: 10-6-5.

          Spades: A-7; Hearts: J-3; Diamonds: J-10-9-6-3; Clubs: J-9-3-2.

          Out of a possible 7 game points, we get 6 for this one. Two others bid and made the 6 NT slam before us. Four others stop at 3 NT and make six anyway. The other pair apparently thought about the slam, then thought twice – they stopped at 4 NT.

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