Bridge with Bland

Bridge with Bland: 7.15.20

COVID-19 has created no-play anxiety among the bridge community. Many clubs across the country have been closed, but the play-bridge websites are burgeoning. Bridge Base Online had 25,000 players on the morning of Tuesday March 17, and others are reported to have been just as busy.

Before the crisis, I had the pleasure of playing at the Stuart Florida Sectional with my longtime partner, St. Louisan Ted Baldwin. We did well and were close to winning an event. See if you can match Ted’s play on a hand from the tournament.

Vul: E/W
Dealer: South

the bidding
S: 1♠
W: Pass
N: 2♥
E: Pass
S: 2♠
W: Pass
N: 4♠
E: Pass
S: Pass
W: Pass

opening lead: ♣ 10

North
♠ Q 8 6
♥ A Q 7 5 4
♦ K 8
♣ Q J 5

West
♠ J
♥ K J 3
♦ A 7 6 5
♣ 10 9 7 6 4

East
♠ 7 5 4 3
♥ 9 8 6 2
♦ Q J
♣ A 3 2

South
♠ A K 10 9 2
♥ 10
♦ 10 9 4 3 2
♣ K 8

the play
1. West led the ♣ 10, 5 from Dummy, Ace by East; Declarer foreseeing a Dummy entry played the King.
2. East then led the ♦ Queen won by West’s Ace.
3. West continued ♦s won by Dummy’s King.
4. Declarer had prepared for a Dummy reversal and played the ♥ Ace. Everyone followed.
5. The ♥4 was led from Dummy and ruffed with the ♠ 10, West playing the Jack.
6. Declarer led the ♠ Ace, noting the drop of the trump Jack by West.
7. The ♠ 2 was led to the 8 in Dummy.
8. Ruffing the ♥ 5 with the ♠ King set up the suit.
9. Declarer led a ♣ to the Queen.
10. The ♥ Queen was led, East following.
11. The ♣ Jack was played; everyone followed.
12. Declarer now led the last ♥, and East was forced to trump; Declarer over-ruffed.
13. Declarer now led the ♦ 10, trumping with the ♠ Queen.
Note: Using good technique, Ted made five for the all-important extra trick and a top at matchpoints.

tip of the day
When do you play for the extra trick at matchpoints?
We mere mortals rely on good technique to make our contract and hopefully find that extra trick. The super experts know when to take the percentage risk.

big games & scores

Feb. 28
Hedy Glover/Meg Griffin
72.5%
Jay’s Bridge Pad

Feb. 28
Nancy Bartel/Kathryn Schneider
70.42%
St. Louis Bridge Center

Mar. 2
Jennifer Luner/Lee Hastings
71.88%
Lee’s West County Bridge

Mar. 5
Paul LaFata/Nancy Spencer
70.83%
St. Louis Bridge Center

Mar. 11
Sandy Bigg/En Xie
70.83%
Bridge Haven

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