Unit 149 (WUMBA) - District 13
Review Please 2004

Review Please
March - May 2004

Waiting for Godot

This is matchpoints and it's a long wait! North opened 1C (precisely), I bid 1NT, north asked with 2C I bid 2D (8-10 HCP, hearts, maybe spades), north bid 2NT and since I did not have spades, I bid 3NT ending the auction.

West led a low diamond won by the ten. I crossed in hearts, took the club finesse twice, cleared the clubs, ran the hearts and was left with the spade 9,8 and the diamond K. West had to bare the diamond king [sic] to avoid a showup in spades, but the position was obvious to the whole world so I finessed in spades, dropped the king and made +520 for 6.5/7.

Better lucky than good

This is IMPS and you are not VUL versus VUL. The team you are playing has more masterpoints than you can imagine and this hand did not improve their mood. West opened 1C , north passed, east bid 1S, west bid 1NT and north doubled! Typically this bid shows hearts and diamonds but, as you can see, the heart holding is a little soft. West passed and I bid 2D ending the auction. This made for +90 and we were not disappointed when our teammates collected +620 at 4H .

Bid five of a minor

More IMPS none VUL. West opened 1H north passed, east bid 3H and I ventured 4C West bid 4H , north raised to 5C , east bid 5H . I doubled this and north was thrilled. Actually the contract was the same at both tables. However, the play diverged. North led the club king (ruffed) and west played a diamond to the queen to lead the heart nine, covered by the jack and king. Now west led a spade. I won and gave declarer a ruff/sluff. Declarer ruffed in dummy and carelessly played a heart to the ten and then cashed the heart ace. Now when I ruffed in I was able to pull the trumps and run the clubs for down five and +1100. Our teammates played more carefully and got out for -300.

Take the extra chance

IMPS: At my table the contract was only four hearts so the defense was not critical. However, at the other table six hearts was the contract and, as the cards lie, the contract is cold.

I led the club queen and declarer took the ace to pitch a spade, then played trumps and gave me the third round but I was able to exit in clubs and eventually got a spade trick, making five.

As you can see from the lie of the cards, a club lead is the only lead to give declarer a problem. At the other table a diamond was led, declarer played off the heart ace-king and a second diamond and put west in to concede the contract. However, if a club is led, after pitching a spade on the ace declarer can take the extra chance by ruffing a club before pulling trumps. This removes west exit card. Declarer could duck the opening club lead and ruff in hand, but this would look stupid if trumps came in and the spade king were offside.

Ask and find out

This is matchpoints. You (south) open 1C (16+ HCP) and north responds 2D showing 5+ diamonds and 8+ HCP. You ask for trump quality with a bid of 3D and north bids 4D showing 6+ diamonds and two of the top three honors. I now bid 7D which figures to be ice cold and it was. No other pair got to the grand. Most played the hand in game but one tried for a partscore. What's the moral?

Take away blackberry

Neither VUL at IMPS. North opened 2H and east bid 3H (this is something). I made the delicate call of 5D which is above the level of 4NT. West doubled but east pulled to 5S (a good idea). All passed and six was easy.

Listen to the bidding

These are the north and south spade holdings. It's matchpoints and west has bid 2NT over south's 1H opening. You pull trumps and west follows to two rounds. How many spades do you think west holds? Answer: one or none. You play the spade ace and west follows with the seven. What next? Unfortunately the spots are not in your favor, but lead the eight and if a sleepy east fails to cover, run it and score an extra trick.

Bidding problem

How would you bid these hands at IMPS? We got to 3NT (yuk!) and made six! 4S was down! (how?) at the other table.

Review Please
June - September 2004

Use your machinery

Precision makes this hand easier to bid. South opens 1C and north responds 3C (4–7 HCP oops! and 7+ clubs). If north had an ace, you could bid a grand slam but you settle for 6C(after bidding blackberry natch) and get a big pickup when the score was +680 at the other table.


You are VUL at matchpoints and east opened in third seat with 1D. South overcalled 2C and west made a limit raise to 3D. When the bidding came back to south she made the doubtful call of 3C and opted to correct the call to 4C. I (west) doubled to punish partner for opening the bidding and north tried the SOS redouble. NS were not on the same wavelength and south passed and the result was –4000 and 8/8 matchpoints (surprise!) for us.

On another occasion my RHO opened 1S and I overcalled 2D with a 3-1-8-1 pattern. This went around to my RHO who doubled, passed to my partner who pulled out the SOS redouble. Which one card suit would you like to bid? I passed and the result was –200 for a soft result.
Moral: take the redouble cards out of your bidding box.

Switch Gears

You are VUL at IMPS. The bidding with no interference goes (south dealer)
1D – 1S – 2D – 4NT – 5H – 5NT – 6C – 6D.
West led the club five, won in hand, and the idea is to make the contract. If diamonds were 3–2, the hand would be cold so I played the diamond ace and king, getting the bad news. Now there is nothing to do but drive out the diamond queen and hope the heart finesse works or a black suit squeeze develops against west (this seems more likely since west appears to have four clubs and if he has the heart queen, that will be additional pressure. The hand came down to:

Dummy had to discard after west had thrown a bunch of hearts. The position seemed to be that west was protecting the black suits so I played the spade ace, king and a ruff (this would leave west with the only spade protection on a different lie of the spot cards). Then the AK of hearts squeezed west. This gained 11 IMPS when the south hand did not open at the other table and north’s 2NT opening was just raised to three.

The empire strikes back

You bid smartly to 6NT and this contract looks like all it needs is the club king onside. However, the big rat on your left leads the diamond six. You try the nine but that is covered by the jack and ace and suddenly you are in deep trouble. I tried a second diamond to the four, ten and king and east returned a high club spot suggesting that the king was onside. However, there was nothing to do but to win the club ace and start running spades. West actually held four diamonds to the eight, the club king and the heart jack and had to sluff hearts so when I led the second heart, the jack appeared and I could overtake to cash the heart ten and the diamond queen. Making six, a winning result at IMPS.

As the stomach turns

Only one masterpoint is at stake is this first (of two!) round matches in a regional compact KO consolation. However, the hired guns on the other team have 65000 masterpoints between them and you are eager to beat them. The twelve boards played in regulation led to a 17–17 IMPS tie. Next came a two board playoff. On the first board you score +110 in a comfortable three diamonds partscore. Next came this stinker. On a conservative auction we arrived at 2S played by south.
The opening lead was a small heart won by the ace. Next came a club to the queen and ace and west returned a club. I ruffed the third round and played a spade to the eight, king and ace. East returned a diamond won in dummy and I ruffed the fourth club (east following). West declined to overruff and it’s your play with the match on the line! Playing on diamonds ensures making 2S but if the spades are 3–2 you make three spades. The situation is more like matchpoints than IMPS so I made the sparkling play of another trump. West had all the remaining spades and drew the trumps and cashed the heart king for down one.
The first board was a push and so was the second when the pros played four spades down one! Next came the tiebreak which we lost narrowly. Yuk!

Trouble with doubles?

Matchpoints both vul. You are south as always. East opens 2NT, you pass, west bids 3D(transfer), partner doubles, east bids 3H, west bids 4C; east bids 4D, west bids 5C, east bids 5S. Do you double this? I did. West converts to 6C. Do you double this? I did. Partner led a spade and I won the first three tricks and we won the open pairs.

Match points again. After a slow and tortured auction the opponents reach five clubs. Do you double this? If you do your score is –550.

IMPS both VUL. You open 1S, LHO bids 2H back to you. Do you double? I did. partner held the KQJ104 of hearts and we got +500.

Review Please
October 2004 – December 2004

High level decision

You are VUL at IMPS and north opened 2C(precisely). East buts in with 2H and I made a negative double. West raised to 3H and it's back to you. I tried 4S, west doubled and north bid 5H. East passed and it's back to you. I raised to 6C and west bid 6H back to you. This was the critical moment. If you double, they make it!. I bid 6S and was allowed to play it, making seven (oops!). At the other table the final contract was 7H doubled down one for a huge pickup. How would you have bid the south hand?

High level decision

Both VUL at IMPS and north opened 1D. East bid 5C and it's your high level decision. Faced with this decision, south at the other table tried 5H and was down two when west held all six missing trumps. What would you do? (no peeking at the north hand). At my table, west opened 2H and north doubled. I had no trouble bidding 4S and made six when a heart was not led.

High level decision

Neither VUL at match points and partner opens 1S (showing 4+ spades, 11–15 HCP and at least nine cards in two suits). RHO bids 2D and you make a negative double. Partner next bids 5C and this shows 8+ clubs and 4+ spades! It's your bid. If partner has the club ace and the spade king you are cold for seven; if not it's trouble. I bid 6C scoring 940 and 8/12 matchpoints. Partner held:

Count the hand

I saw it on TV! The person with photographic memory watched fifty-one cards dealt from a shuffled deck and then identified the missing card (correctly). You can do it! Assign a point value of 1 to 10 for the ace to ten of clubs, 11 for the jack, 12 for the queen and 13 for the king. Do the same thing for the other suits by adding 13 to the diamonds, 26 to the hearts and 39 to the spades. Then as the cards appear just keep a running total of the points. The total point for the deck is (52)(53)/2 = 1378. So subtract your total from 1378 and that's the point value for the missing card!

Ignore the spots

The auction was 1D by north, 1H by south, blackwood by north, one ace by south, 6H by north ending the "auction". I led a spade, won in dummy and declarer played the heart king on which I played the nine , it's supposed to be a singleton so declarer will play the heart queen next and go down in slam. However, declarer ignored the play and played a heart to the ace and then cleared the hearts. Next came the curious play of the top spades followed by the ace-king of diamonds. Oops! We took the rest for +300 and a top. Note that there is a restricted choice position in diamonds; declarer should cash one round early before playing trumps. Then it's percentage play to finesse the heart ten, ruff a spade winner, finesse the diamond, and then pull the last trump.

Keep your eye on the ball

It's IMPS and NS arrived at 3NT. It is hard to believe that this happened in the top flight but it's true. I was west and made the sparkling lead of the diamond queen! Even pooh bear could figure out that you have five diamonds, two spades and the two rounded aces. However, declarer took the diamond king! and finessed the heart to my king. Now I shifted to my stiff spade and the contract was in trouble. Declarer ultimately made two tricks in each suit and the result was down one for a mess of IMPS.

Matchpoint greed

Despite our methods (sound preempts in first and second position), partner opened 3D and I converted to 3NT. The opening lead was a heart away from the queen and the play is the thing. Of course you can guarantee the contract by playing the ace and a diamond, but this is evil matchpoints. So I played a club to the jack and ace and put the diamond queen on the table. Unfortunately east showed out and you have converted eleven sure tricks to nine! Fortunately west grabbed the king and you were back to eleven and 5.5/6 matchpoints.

Precision problem

It's more matchpoints and partner opens 1C (precisely). You can respond 2S to show 4–7 HCP with six spades and the points mostly in the spade suit. Or you can respond 1D and hope to be able to bid spades twice subsequently. What do you bid? I bid 2S and was raised to four making easily. In standard american, partner opens 1NT on her 16 HCP, you transfer to spades, invite, and partner will accept so it's an average whatever you do.