X-Clubs 37

This deal comes from an on-line Swiss Pairs event at the Wellington Bridge Club. There’s nothing as satisfying as bidding and making a slam on the very first board, and even more satisfying when you learn later that not one other pair bid and made the slam.

Board 1 from Monday 14/11/22
Dealer North Nil Vul

J96
AQ75
64
Q865
K853
J43
AQT875
AT742
KT
AKT732
Q
9862
KJ932
J94

Progress Reports

As at 11;10pm we had 49 of the expected 55 clubs in.

Loveblock Pairs in the Starting Blocks

Welcome to the annual NZ-Wide Pairs. This year we have a great turn-out of 56 clubs from Kerikeri to Invercargill.

X-Clubs 36

The general rule of thumb when playing a No Trump contract is that you play on your longest suit to develop tricks in it. Here, West had two long suits with many potential tricks, but only two stoppers in an outside suit, one of them having been removed on the opening lead, and the other certain to be
removed when the defence win their first trick, which was bound to happen. How then should West as declarer proceed after a spade lead from North?

Board 17 from Tuesday 8/11/22
Dealer North Nil Vul

QJ843
863
J
J542
K9
A54
32
AKT863
A5
KQ9
AT98765
9
T762
JT72
KQ4
Q7

Quick One ..

One quick one for declarers. The bidding is irrelevant, only your side has bid and you are declarer as West in 3NT. North leads the spade four.

K9
A54
32
AKT863
A5
KQ9
AT98765
9

TWO play questions:
1. How do you play this in a match point session.
2. Would you play it any differently in a TEAMS match?

One bidding question: East is dealer. Should EW have bid it differently and not ended up in 3NT at a) match points and b) teams?

Vil’s Corner X-Clubs 35

Our X-Clubs readers may be interested in this issue of “Vil’s Corner” from the Hutt Club’s regular newsletter “Finesse”. Entries with answers to the final poser are welcome from members of other clubs and there will be a special prize for the perfect answer. Last month’s posers proved a bit of a challenge. Thanks to “Peter and Dale” who gave two very good, though not perfect, answers.. Well done, and thank you for your contribution. Here are my suggested answers to the questions:

1. Dealer West All Vul

AKQ
KQT5
KQJ84
4
J86542
A92
AT
AK

Playing basic NZ Bridge Acol, how should the bidding go to arrive at the optimum contract?

X-Clubs Play 34

On Board 15 from last Friday's X-Clubs, I have never known so many of our players, of both lower and higher grades, to not know what to bid, nor so many different ideas about what the bidding sequence

X-Clubs Play 33

Teams play can be much more interesting and exciting than any match point session. That is because matches can be won or lost in just one hand, with big swings possible when either team fails to make their game or slam, or when one team is in slam and the opponents only in game. This deal was played in a slam at both tables in two of our matches and could have resulted in a big swing one way or another and a big win for either team. There were six matches in progress but only in two matches was the slam bid. More interestingly, in one match, both declarers made but should not have. In the other match both declarers failed, as indeed they should have. Another interesting thing was that it was in the top of the table match that both declarers were allowed to make the slam by less than adequate defence. But at least both declarers gave it their best shot and gave the defence a chance to go wrong.

Board 20 from Tuesday 11/10/22
Dealer West All Vul

AQJ542
A3
65
A75
87
QT75
QJ92
Q92
96
J64
T873
K863
KT3
K982
AK4
JT4

X-Clubs Play 32

Declarer play is not just a matter of following basic tips, but also about timing and thinking ahead. Every trick counts in a match point session. Many declarers failed to get the most out this hand in what should have been a very easy 4S game. Most did manage to make their game but some even failed to do that. Only a few made the overtrick that was there to be made without the help of Deep Finesse. All that was required was a knowledge of how to finesse and how to organise your play so that you take the finesses when it suits you.

Board 20 from Thursday 6/10/22
Dealer West All Vul

AQJT6
6
AQT8
AQ4
987
T5
J764
K762
42
KQJ8743
9
JT9
K53
A92
K532
853

X-Clubs Play 31

Do you have trouble with big hands? I regularly hear explanations of “19+”, “22+”, “19-21” etc, for both a 2C and a 2D opening, without any real indication of just what the bid means or what its purpose is. Board 6 provided a great example of how difficult (or easy?) it can be to bid big hands to the correct spot.

Board 6 from Friday 19/09/22
Dealer East EW Vul

A72
K74
J652
Q85
QT8653
53
87
J32
K
AT986
AKQ
AK76
J94
QJ2
T943
T94

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