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Common Game 2018-10-29 Board 1
West
K7
J763
AQ7
A987
North
106532
98
1063
1054
East
Q84
K10
KJ9854
63
South
AJ9
AQ542
2
KQJ2
D
1
West
North
East
South
P
2
2
2NT
P
3
P
3NT
P
P
P

Analysis by David Loeb

Lynn Berg typically provides analysis for 299ers on boards 1-18. Additionally, analysis for more advanced players is available for boards 1-2, 5, and 8.

The Bidding: After North passes as dealer, East must decide whether to open a Weak Two Diamonds . As Andrew Gumperz discusses in his "Better Preempts IV: Preempts by Seat Position (part 1)" article, North's pass decreases the likelihood North-South have a game. So a 2nd seat preempt should be constructive. Having more strength outside of diamonds than in diamonds is a negative. If East-West play a new suit at the 2-level is constructive and non-forcing after a Weak Two , the risk of missing a spade fit is decreased and opening 2 seems best.

South has a choice between doubling and overcalling 2. Overcalling 2 seems best. South has the strength and shape to make a takeout double if West raises to 3.

West's Jack could be a stopper. 3NT is a possibility. West uses a 2NT asking bid. If 2NT is Ogust , East shows a good hand with a bad suit. If 2NT asks for a Feature , East will show their King. Either way, West ventures 3NT.

The Play in 3NT: North leads the 9, top of a doubleton. When dummy hits, South expects declarer to hold Jxxx or Jxxxx. South covers dummy's card and wins the first trick. Continuing hearts will establish at least 1 heart winner for declarer. That could be declarer's 9th trick. Switching to clubs will set 3NT if North has 4 clubs or has the Ten. South switches to the King. Declarer has a choice between holding up or hoping the clubs block. Here, the club shift allows the defense to score 6 tricks for a 2 trick set.

The Play in 3: South leads the King, top of an honor sequence. Declarer calls for the Ace. Declarer delays drawing trump because they want to ruff a spade in the short hand. Declarer has 9 tricks: 1 + 1 ruff + 6 + 1.

The Play in 3: East is likely to lead a diamond. When dummy tables, it is apparent that diamond ruffs may be expensive for declarer. So continuing diamonds seems best. If declarer attempts to draw trump, the defense will cash a 2nd diamond winner. If declarer ruffs a 2nd diamond, the defense can navigate a club ruff. Either way, declarer is down 1.

Analysis by Lynn Berg

East may open 2. If she does, South will either double or bid 2 (depending on their style).
Either way, West will get in on the bidding. If East passes, South opens 1 and West bids 1NT. That will get them to 3NT, I hope. South makes life too easy if she just knocks out West's heart stopper. Win the first heart as high as needed and shift to the K to be as "nasty" as possible. If you don't, West can develop nine tricks.

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