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Deal of the Week (Dec 20, 2011) Click here for Archives
The Auction:

You are East and you partner has just opened with weak 2 , moreover, North has passed.

What are you going to bid?


2 seems too low.

3 would be forcing to your partner. But what if his opening bid of 2 was really-really weak?

You are tempted to jump to 4 to block the opponents. But you might not make it.

 52 Deal  6
 1087  AKQJ63
 KJ8743  Q65
 K5  1086
Christmas Gift.

This hand was played in real life during the World Mind Games 2011 in Bejing in the Men Individual Series last week. In one of the tables, East got the contract. So it is an important decision.
Lets now consider your opponents hand. It is South`s turn to bid. Your hand looks good, but it is Christmas time, and everyone gets presents (opponents included!). There is no question that regardless how many hearts you decided to bid, South will overcall with spades. With 9 tricks in his hand South should bid at least 4 ♠.
But as it is Christmas time, this hand gives every player a chance to dream about a slam or at least a game.

At the World Mind Games tournament, one of the pairs East decided to go for 4 and the bidding proceeded as follows:


West answered with 5 , and although South went to 5 ♠, East went still higher -- to 6 , which was doubled.
After cashing in the King of Spades and then the Ace of Diamonds, South played a small spade. East claimed the remaining 11 tricks going down by one.
For 6 doubled - 1 by East North-South earned 200 points.

At the other table East bid 3, and the bidding proceeded as follows:

2Pass 3 4♠

When West passed after South`s overcall of 4 ♠, East went back to diamonds, not knowing if partner has support in hearts and made a bid of 5 . South got the contract in 5 ♠.
West played the seven of hearts and East claimed the opening trick with king. East then played a small diamond, reasoning (rightly) that if ever there was a chance to get a second trick, it might be in the partners suit. But South took it with the ace of diamonds and soon claimed all the remaining tricks.
For 5 ♠ +1 North-South earned 680 points.

Happy Christmas!


Why didn't 6 by East go down by more? North and South could have made two more tricks in clubs making the score 6 doubled - 3 . Perhaps the key to this lies in the fact, that South had no way of knowing North had such strength in clubs.

So after East got the contract of 6, South must have thought about playing his singleton jack of clubs, but had no way of knowing his partner had the ace of clubs. Obviously South just couldn't believe the opponents went to slam with only one ace and therefore his partner must have the ace of clubs.

Again, it shows just how vital it was for East-West to keep North silent during the bidding, by going too high and too fast, giving him no chance of showing his club suit.

Par Contract Analysis:

Bridge Baron deal No : N0639-66613-24492-41837-32338-08535

You can download this deal in PPL format, and view it with Bridge Baron here :
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