Monday, March 22, 2010

Board 122

Board 122
Both sides vulnerable

♠ 4 A K Q 4 3 2 K 8 7 ♣ 9 7 4

RHO passes, and I open with one heart. LHO bids two diamonds, partner raises to two hearts, and RHO doubles. I bid three hearts, obeying the Law. LHO jumps to four spades, which ends the auction, and partner leads the six of hearts.


NORTH
♠ K 8 7 6 2
8 7
Q 10
♣ K 6 5 2




EAST
♠ 4
A K Q 4 3 2
K 8 7
♣ 9 7 4


WestNorthEastSouth
Pass1 2
2 Double3 4 ♠
(All pass)


North's hand is not my idea of a responsive double. I think a double should have both less shape and more high cards, so that partner is free to pass the double when he doesn't hold a second suit . A responsive double after an overcall isn't so much a take-out double as it is a penalty double without a trump stack. With this hand, I would bid two spades, counting on the diamond tolerance to see me through if partner doesn't have spade support.

I know partner has two hearts higher than the six. They must be the jack and nine. Otherwise partner would have led the top of his sequence. I consider winning with the ace and returning a low heart to conceal the location of the heart honors from declarer. But partner might reasonably think that I'm desperately putting him on play for a club shift. I decide to compromise. I win with the king, as declarer plays the ten, then play the ace. Declarer ruffs with the spade three, and partner plays the heart five.

It's rare for partner to have four hearts for his two heart bid. Usually, with four trumps, he should bid either three hearts (pre-emptive) or three diamonds (perhaps stretching a little) to put more pressure on the opponents. Either one of those calls might have shut North out of the bidding.

Declarer leads the jack of spades--five--deuce--four. He then leads the nine of spades, and partner wins with the ace. I pitch the four of hearts. Partner shifts to the queen of clubs. Declarer wins in dummy with the king. He plays the ten of diamonds, which I duck. It holds. He cashes the spade king, drawing partner's last trump, then leads the queen of diamonds, which I also duck. He overtakes with the ace, ruffs a diamond, and claims. Making five.


NORTH
♠ K 8 7 6 2
8 7
Q 10
♣ K 6 5 2


WEST
♠ A 10 5
J 9 6 5
9 2
♣ Q J 10 8


EAST
♠ 4
A K Q 4 3 2
K 8 7
♣ 9 7 4


SOUTH
♠ Q J 9 3
10
A J 6 5 4 3
♣ A 3



That's a strange way to handle the diamond suit. He should lead the queen for the first finesse. Then he can overtake the ten with the jack. On the line he took, he wouldn't have been too happy if I had held king fourth of diamonds.

At the other table, my teammate chooses to bid two spades over two heart instead of doubling. As you already know, I approve. East bids three hearts, and South raises to four spades. East leads the heart ace, then shifts to the seven of clubs. Declarer eventually scores eleven tricks for a push.

Both Wests chose to bid two hearts. What wimps! I would bid three hearts.  I'm not worried about missing a game, since I think opener should bid on with six hearts or with a hand that would make a game try opposite a single raise.  If you prefer not to pre-empt with this good a hand, even overbidding with three diamonds is better than bidding two hearts. The downside to cue-bidding is that it creates a force should the opponents bid game, which I don't want to do.

To see what would happen, I replayed the board twice with myself as West. The first time, I bid three hearts over the two diamond overcall; the second time, I bid three diamonds. In each case, North passed, and partner bid four hearts and bought it. Down two. Sigh. That would have been an easy 10 imps. Sometimes you're just sitting in the wrong seat.

Me: -650
Jack: -650

Score on Board 122: 0 IMPs
Total: -17 IMPs

2 comments:

  1. running out of boards. When do we really start to swing?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Swing? They're overconfident now. I've got them right where I want them.

    ReplyDelete