Join Bridge Winners
Las Vegas NABC, Day 4, Life Master Pairs Finals
(Page of 3)

Sunday marked the finals of the Life Master Pairs.  We went into the event in 55th place with a wee bit of carryover.   We started at the table closest to the Spingold preregistration area.  (I think the directors did that on purpose in case they had problems with the Bridge Winners preentries. ;)  

Our session started out mixed.  We bid our way to a solid 4 game, and when our opponents decided to lead trump, I was able to run a long heart suit for pitches, making 6.  However, on the next board, our opponents bid and made a slam.  We bid our way to a pushy 3 contract where I was in a 4-3 fit (responding to partner's takeout double with a 10 count at the 3 level).  I played it really well to make 3 in a crossruff, which garnered most of the matchpoints.  We were off to a good start.

A few hands later in second seat, red vs. white, I picked up:

South
10842
KJ10863
Q74
W
N
E
S
P
?

Your bid?

I was disciplined and passed.  The auction continued

South
10842
KJ10863
Q74
W
N
E
S
P
P
1
2
P
2
3
3
P
P
3
4
4
P
P
5
X
5
X
P
P
P

Now it was time to get in the action.  I bid 2, and my partner raised.  Everyone got into the action at that point, and eventually we ended up in 5 doubled.  On the lead of the K, dummy came down.

North
K7
AQ5
Q10987642
South
10842
KJ10863
Q74
W
N
E
S
P
P
1
2
P
2
3
3
P
P
3
4
4
P
P
5
X
5
X
P
P
P

Plan the play.

North
K7
AQ5
Q10987642
South
10842
KJ10863
Q74
W
N
E
S
P
P
1
2
P
2
3
3
P
P
3
4
4
P
P
5
X
5
X
P
P
P

I ruffed the opening lead in dummy. If clubs split, I might be able to establish the clubs while I still had transportation to the board.  Everything rated to be to my left, so the K would probably be an entry. I ruffed a club to hand, both following.  I played a trump to the board, both following, and then ruffed another club, which produced the A on my left. I played another round of trump to the board, LHO showing out. I played the last club towards my hand, and being down to two trump in my hand, I was afraid. Afraid I was going to lose control of the hand.  
 
Really, all I had to do was to stop and think: about the bidding, about the distribution, and about what everyone had in their hands, and I would have realized I would have been fine. Instead of ruffing (the right move), I pitched a diamond, a winner on loser play. Eventually, I was down 3 for -800. The right play was to continue what I'd started out doing and ruff the last club, pull the last trump and play a spade towards the K in dummy. I would lose the A and the A and make my contract for +850. Instead, I was -800, for our worst score of the day.
 
All four hands are below:

West
AQ6
9
AKJ9865
A5
North
K7
AQ5
Q10987642
East
J953
742
1032
KJ3
South
10842
KJ10863
Q74
D

Later in the event, I picked up:

South
A43
K1076
AJ65
A10
W
N
E
S
3
P
P
X
P
P
P
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