Saturday, April 30, 2011

Bridge Blog 414: Hands down -- Part I

          I saved two hands from the week’s play in this final week of April to mull over. This one is from Monday’s afternoon session at the Airport Bridge Club in which partner Usha Khurana was mystified why she only made 3 Spades on a hand where everybody else bid and made 4 Spades, sometimes with overtricks. It’s Board 3. Usha is East. I’m West. We’re vulnerable. South is dealer. Here are the hands:

          East (Usha)
          Spades: K-Q-10-8-5; Hearts: A-10; Diamonds: 10-8-2; Clubs: K-Q-3.

          Spades: 9-3; Hearts: 9-5-4-3; Diamonds: A-Q-7-3; Clubs: A-8-7.

          West (Dale)
          Spades: A-6-4; Hearts: K-2; Diamonds: 9-5; Clubs: J-10-9-6-5-2.

          Spades: J-7-2; Hearts: Q-J-8-7-6; Diamonds: K-J-6-4; Clubs; 4.

          I don’t recall the bidding, but looking at the hands it seems like there would be three passes to Usha. She bid 1 Spade. I bid 2 Spades. End of auction. I do recall the lead, however. Queen of Hearts.
          Now the hand ought to make five Spades, two Hearts and a bunch of Clubs once you knock out the Ace. What happened to Usha was that she drew three rounds of trumps and didn’t have anything to ruff her extra Diamond with, so she lost the Ace of Clubs and three Diamonds. What she needs to do is lose two Diamonds early, real early, and ruff the third Diamond. Then it makes four. The people who made an extra trick? Their opponents must not have cashed their Diamonds.

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