Sunday, April 19, 2015

To split or not to split

If everyone is playing double-dummy, automatic plays become wrong plays and strange plays become correct. To imagine every layout of the spot cards, and to go to a fourth dimension, is to transcend ordinary analysis and play like the gods. The west player on the following hand has an interesting problem when clubs are led. (He gets off to the best lead, a trump, and once again when in with the spade King, gets off to a second trump, the best for his side.) His moment of truth arrives when the four of clubs is led from hand. (This hand is a strange echo of the last post "A difficult 8-card ending", once again the club suit is 4-3 West East) It seems automatic to split from Q, J, T, but if he does, he gets to hold the lead, since his partner cannot overtake, Now, if he continues a high club, I win in hand, and use the two dummy entries (trump and Jack of spades) to ruff a club small, establishing the King, and enjoying it for a diamond discard. If instead, West tries a small club,i duck to East's 9, fly Ace on East's diamond return, cross in spades, ruff a small club, setting up King, and cross to trump Ace to take my diamond pitch.

Thus, West's correct play is to time the first round of the club suit (tempo is important!) by not splitting Q,J,T, letting his partner win the 9 which he has to hope he has!! Now East's Diamond return is in time!

In practice I won 7 IMP as west fell from grace and even spared me the hard work, returning a diamond into the teeth of my tenace

A difficult 8-card ending

You play in four hearts. Click on next until three rounds of trump are drawn. Here, i went wrong. How would YOU play?

You see, you need to eliminate East's diamond and clubs as he comes under pressure in exiting, you also need west to have the Ace of clubs. However, you need to be surgically precise

If you try CT, West ducks, you win in dummy, EAST will need to UNBLOCK his Jack or Nine. Now when you continue with a small club (My own play of spade was stupid) East will play his preserved small card and west will win club EIGHT. Now there is no endplay, when west exits with the Jack of spades. (On any other exit, say a diamond, East's D exit goes away as you ruff in dummy and you ruff yourself to hand stripping East of clubs, and then lead a spade up, if west plays low, you stick in the nine endplaying east, if west puts in the Jack, you play the Queen and when East wins he has only spades and has to lead away from the spade Ten to the split menace Ax and 9x

The correct play in the EIGHT card ending is a low club, the 7 to the King in dummy. Now they have no answer as you play a club back toward your TEN, EAST has to win Jack, and has to return a diamond (or dummy's CQ sets up), you ruff the diamond, ruff out his club exit and proceed as above.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Despite nullo play, I get top board

I open a offshape 1NT in fourth seat, hoping to skew the result and slightly preempt the opponents. Partner transfers to spades and shows a invitational hand with secondary diamonds. I decide my Jx of spades is enough for game to be a good bet. West leads CK. I cannot hold off gainfully in Four Spades, and there is the risk of a ruff, so I win, and take a slight risk, crossing in diamonds to play a spade up to my J. To no avail, as West wins, and he can now scuttle my contract with CQ and C ruff, but he is not sure of the C position. He returns a diamond. I win and pull two trumps in dummy and play a heart up. RHO follows small

What do you play and why?

West was a passed hand. Can he have C:KQ, S:A as well as H:A? No. Therefore, there is no guess. You have to rise HK

East did well to play low. He gave you a guess. You are insulting east if you put in the Jack. It will lose to West.

Alas, I too forgot the significance of the dog that did not bark in the nighttime. I lost to the Queen. Now West made the last blunder of the game by cashing CQ, instead of playing a heart, forcing me to ruff, and lose two clubs for one down.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

6H, a show-up squeeze, pressure in three suits.

After a somewhat agricultural auction, where I ask for keycards and, since on the opening bid, partner rates to have the DK protected from the lead, I raise to 6H. Since this is a robot tourney, I take the North seat and play on the DQ lead

RHO wins DA and returns a diamond, I fly King and take stock. If the club finesse is right, it can wait provided four spades run, since there is a show-up squeeze in the ending.

Accordingly, I pull trump. They break 4-1. I draw four rounds as LHO pitches a spade along the way. Now four spades run, and I finish the fifth trump, LHO keeps his DJ, and has to bare his CK, and on a club to the AQ, the King pops up on my left. NOTE: My LHO did not misdefend in pitching a spade. He comes under pressure in spades, diamond and clubs. If he lets go clubs, my entire club suit sets up with the aid of a finesse. This is a triple squeeze.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Bridge Analysis - 3NT

A complex deal which saw me at the helm in 3NT. I represented 20 HCP values with 2NT, a slight overbid and partner put me in game, another overbid. I won the diamond lead and led out the CJ from hand and had no problems when LHO played the stiff T and RHO chose to win the first club

Plan play if RHO refuses the first club. Take your time, then read below.

Double dummy, you will need two late spade entries to dummy (the Nine and the queen) to finesse and set up the clubs. Play for the layout Txxx Kx, Your first lead must be the JACK of spades. ( If East wins, they can take one spade and one heart and two diamonds but that is all. You use the NINE of spades to finesse the clubs ending in hand as east doesnt cover, and the Queen of spades to run the suit) If East ducks, you cash the two black aces and exit in clubs to clear and establish the suit. Queen of spades is an entry to dummy. In this variation they can take One club one heart aand two diamonds that is all. What is that you say? If West has the KJ9 remaining of diamonds and East has the Heart Ace, I am down? Yes, but in this game, you make your own luck.

i won a bushel of MPs for my 3NT, but I wonder if I would have found the spade Jack play at trick three if E ducked

Welcome to Ramesh's BRIDGE BLOG

In these pages, I comment on hands from Bridge Base Online ACBL tourneys. I play in these with a variety of partners with different degrees of skill. I might present a hand or two from my collection of bridge books, every now and then. I am more interested in play and defense than in complex bidding systems, but I do follow the cut and thrust of Vanderbilt and World Championship Vugraph and try to keep abreast of expert practice in the obstructive and constructive bidding system department. I may also feature, newspaper-style, famous hands from important matches that I saw on Vugraph.

NOTE: For JUNE, I am experimenting with adding BBO's Handviewers, which make bridge movies embedded. Just
scroll down beyond the few sampled book covers and you arrive at the blogs that play themselves with the NEXT button. THANKS, BBO!!

About Me

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Bridge expert for 20 years. I started blogging about bridge only in 2009. Chess follower. Problem fan. Studied hundreds of composition themes in two-movers, fairy chess, the former from the Good Companion era to the modern style of virtual play. Big collector of chess and bridge rare books. My two game blogs bridge blog, and my chess problem themes blog chess expo

My alter ego, The Hideous Hog

My alter ego, The Hideous Hog