Join Bridge Winners
Gargoyle Chronicles - Event 3, Match 9, Board 4
(Page of 2)

gargoyle

Board 4
Both sides vulnerable



Phillip
Q72
1062
965
A1032
LHO opens 1; RHO bids 4. Everyone passes, and partner leads the K.


Marcin
A964
K953
A74
54
Phillip
Q72
1062
965
A1032
W
N
E
S
1
P
4
P
P
P

4? I agree this hand is too good for a limit raise, but that makes it a forcing raise, not a preempt. Perhaps Marcin is used to playing some forcing club system, where a pseudo-preempt like this makes some tactical sense.

Declarer plays low from dummy, I discourage with the 5, and declarer follows with the 3. Partner continues with the Q. It's possible partner has KQ10 and is trying to pin a doubleton jack. It's also possible he has KQJ.

In the latter case, when should partner lead the queen and when should he lead the jack? Some possible agreements are: (1) Always lead the jack if you have it. If you lead the queen, partner knows you are trying to pin the jack and will know what is going on if it doesn't work. (2) Show present count (lead the jack with an odd number and the queen with an even number). If declarer takes the ace, partner will know whether the third diamond is cashing or not. (3) Show suit preference. Agreement (3) makes no sense to me unless your diamond length is already known. I think clarifying your holding in the suit you are playing takes precedence over suit preference. I suspect, however, that Jack plays a fourth agreement that makes no sense at all: (4) Always lead the queen.

Declarer plays the A from dummy. Having given attitude at trick one, I should give present count now. But it's not a good idea to leave partner with the sole guard in a suit. If I play the 9, declarer may be able to throw partner in with the 7 later on, or he may be able to squeeze partner in diamonds and spades. Offhand, I can't think of how either of those events would come to pass. Perhaps there is no layout where playing the 9 will cost. But I can hardly take the time to try to construct one now. So, to be safe, I play the 6. Partner should be alert to the fact that I might not want to part with the 9 and should give me some leeway.

It seems natural for declarer to play a club from dummy next. But he leads the 3. I play the 6--Q--7. (My echo shows three trumps, by the way. It is not suit preference. I think it is a serious mistake to play suit preference in the trump suit, though it would take too long to present my arguments now. Maybe at some point I'll devote an entire post to the matter.)

Declarer plays the 4 to dummy's king. Partner discards the 8, and I follow with the 2. Declarer has drawn two rounds of trumps before playing clubs, risking our being able to draw a third round when we gain the lead with the A. So, whatever declarer's clubs are, he doesn't need to ruff two of them.

Declarer plays the 5 to his ace. Partner discards the 10. I assume partner would have discarded from a five-card black suit by now. So declarer is either 3-5-2-3 or 2-5-2-4. In the latter case, in line with my earlier observation, declarer's clubs must be specifically KQJx.

Declarer plays the 5--8--9--Q. If declarer has another spade loser, he is down. If he doesn't, we need a second club trick. This is the position:

Marcin
A64
9
7
54
Phillip
72
9
A1032
W
N
E
S
1
P
4
P
P
P

I can't see that it matters what I do. Either we have two tricks or we don't. There are no squeezes or endplays to prevent, nor is there any rush to cash tricks. With nothing else to guide me, my inclination is to fall back on general principles: Declarer doesn't seem to want to play clubs, so perhaps I should play them. What's bad for his side might be good for our side.

I play the 2--Q--6--4. Declarer leads the J. I take my ace, and declarer takes the rest. Making four.


Jack
K1083
7
KQJ108
986
Marcin
A964
K953
A74
54
Phillip
Q72
1062
965
A1032
Daniel
J5
AQJ84
32
KQJ7
W
N
E
S
1
P
4
P
P
P
D
4
4 South
NS: 0 EW: 0

The result is the same at the other table.

It occurs to me that if declarer had the same hand without the J, my club switch would have cost the contract. If I switch to a spade or diamond instead, declarer will be unable to avoid two club losers. That wasn't exactly an oversight, since I had specifically rejected the possibility that declarer heldKQxx. Declarer squandered two dummy entries. How can he have a hand where he needs to lead up to his clubs twice?In general, it's safe to do something for declarer that he easily could have done himself.

Still, I can't construct a layout where a club shift gains. If partner were to ask me what I was playing for, I would have no answer. I shouldn't make assumptions I don't have to make no matter how reasonable they are. So I have to consider the club switch an error.

Though it's not as serious an error as partner's failure to double 1. What was he thinking? He was lucky that North had an over-strength preempt. If I passed over 1 with that hand and heard LHO raise to 4, I would be afraid I had missed a game.

Table 1: -620
Table 2: +620

Result on Board 4: 0 IMPs
Total: +8 IMPs

2 Comments
Getting Comments... loading...
.

Bottom Home Top