Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Thursday, February 19th, 2015

The most dangerous of our calculations are those we call illusions.

George Bernanos


South North
East-West ♠ Q 9 4
 Q 10 6 2
 A Q 2
♣ J 5 3
West East
♠ K 10
 8 7 4
 J 10
♣ K Q 9 8 6 2
♠ J 6 5
 A J 9 5
 9 7 6 5 3
♣ 4
South
♠ A 8 7 3 2
 K 3
 K 8 4
♣ A 10 7
South West North East
1♠ 2♣ 3♣ Pass
4♠ All pass    

♣K

North's bid of three clubs showed a limit-raise or better in spades facing South's five-card major. You lead the club king, for the three, four, and ace. Declarer plays the spade ace and a second spade, partner contributing the five and six. You are on lead; where to go now?

Partner’s play in trump is suit-preference, asking for a shift to the lower (or lowest) of the options. Which minor to play? Well, you surely cannot beat the hand by playing a diamond if partner has three clubs. There is very unlikely to be any way to collect more than a spade, heart and diamond trick since your partner can hardly have more than six points, can he?

On balance, it is far better is to hope that your partner has a singleton club. Play the club queen, and then give partner a ruff, then hope that your partner can come through with enough in the red-suits to beat the hand. (South might have done better to look for three no-trump here, a far safer contract today.) You should also calculate that if everyone follows to the second club, (unlikely, I know) it looks right to play a third club and kill declarer’s discard while hoping for the trump promotion.

Just for the record: this is the sort of hand where the old-fashioned trump echo to request a ruff might appear to make life simpler. But you can still convey the same message, as well as many others, by Suit Preference in trumps.


Your inclination might be to let sleeping dogs lie, and pass out one diamond. That might work out well for you, but the percentage action is surely to balance with a call of one no-trump, showing a maximum pass with a diamond stop. Unless your LHO has a moose, this rates to play well enough for your side.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ Q 9 4
 Q 10 6 2
 A Q 2
♣ J 5 3
South West North East
Pass 1 Pass Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

In small proportions we just beauties see;
And in short measures life may perfect be.

Ben Johnson


South North
Neither ♠ J 9 8
 J 6 5 4
 A J 8 7
♣ 8 3
West East
♠ 5 3 2
 10 7
 6 4 2
♣ J 10 9 4 2
♠ 6 4
 A K Q 3 2
 Q 10 9
♣ K Q 6
South
♠ A K Q 10 7
 9 8
 K 5 3
♣ A 7 5
South West North East
1♠ Pass 2♠ Dbl.
4♠ All pass    

♣J

It is often overlooked in the heat of battle, that when you have to make a discard you should part with a card that cannot possibly be of any use, rather than one that might conceivably take an active part. This deal is a good example of the theme, although the mistake is one that many players might have made.

Defending against four spades East overtook his partner’s lead of the club jack with his queen. When this was allowed to hold, he attacked hearts by leading out the king ace, and a low one. Declarer ruffed high and West, who was sure his hand could play no further part in the deal, parted with a low diamond.

In view of East’s take-out double and West’s discard, the diamond finesse looked a poor bet, so declarer cashed the club ace and ruffed a club, then played off four rounds of trump, discarding two diamonds from dummy. East had to retain the heart king and so parted with a diamond. Now the diamond ace and king left South with the winning five.

In retrospect, maybe West should have seen that if he had held on to all of his diamonds, he would have made the setting trick with his six at the end.

In summary, when discarding, the weak hand should make life easy for the strong hand. But beware of telling partner information he already knows, and also of helping declarer more than your partner. Additionally, keeping winners rather than losers never goes out of style.


My views here may seem somewhat sacrilegious amongst the 'Majors first at all costs' but I would raise to two diamonds rather than bid one heart. The former preempts a level of the auction, and tells partner where you live. Bear in mind that in third seat partner with limited values will tend to bid suits he wants led. So you shouldn't worry about facing three small diamonds here.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ J 9 8
 J 6 5 4
 A J 8 7
♣ 8 3
South West North East
Pass Pass 1 Dbl.
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, February 17th, 2015

There is nothing to winning, really. That is, if you happen to be blessed with a keen eye, an agile mind, and no scruples whatsoever.

Alfred Hitchcock


South North
Neither ♠ K J 6
 J 5
 K 8 3
♣ A 9 6 5 4
West East
♠ Q 5 4
 A 9 8 7 4
 Q J 7
♣ J 2
♠ 7
 K Q 10 3 2
 9 6 4 2
♣ Q 8 3
South
♠ A 10 9 8 3 2
 6
 A 10 5
♣ K 10 7
South West North East
1♠ Pass 2♣ Pass
2♠ Pass 4♠ All pass

Q

John Solodar (a Bermuda bowl winner in 1981) was the hero on this hand from an early round of the Vanderbilt knock-out teams a few years ago. Plan the play in four spades, a spot you have reached on an unopposed auction. The opening lead is the diamond queen. Before you start the play, remember that a little learning is a dangerous thing, and that this hand is full of what Alfred Hitchcock called McGuffins, distractions to lead you away from the real theme of the deal.

The first thing your mind may turn to is the idea of an endplay in the club and/or the diamond suit. The declarer (a many time world champion) in the other room took the diamond ace and tackled trumps early to find that he had a loser. When declarer led a heart from dummy East rose with an honor and played a diamond through South’s 10. Now South’s fate was sealed, since he had to lose a trick in every suit. However, this is actually an incredibly straightforward hand — if you see the point.

Solodar took the diamond ace, cashed the spade ace, played a club to the ace, then led another club to the king and played a third club. East won the trick and cashed a top heart, then shifted back to diamonds. But John simply won, cashed the spade king and played a winning club to discard his diamond loser. 10 tricks made.


Since you have already denied four spades at your last turn, it feels right to raise three spade to four spades. Even if you are playing a 4-3 fit, this will surely be the game with the best chances for your side.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ K J 6
 J 5
 K 8 3
♣ A 9 6 5 4
South West North East
1
Dbl. Pass 2 Pass
3♣ Pass 3♠ Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Monday, February 16th, 2015

People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading.

Logan Pearsall Smith


South North
East-West ♠ Q 6 4
 Q 10
 A 3 2
♣ K J 7 5 3
West East
♠ A J 9
 J 6 4 3
 Q 10 6
♣ Q 10 8
♠ K 7 5 3
 K 7 5 2
 8 5
♣ 9 6 2
South
♠ 10 8 2
 A 9 8
 K J 9 7 4
♣ A 4
South West North East
1 Pass 2♣ Pass
2 NT Pass 3 NT All pass

3

Today's deal exemplifies the idea that reading bridge books will improve your technique so as to benefit your performance at the table. Some elements of technique that are really too hard to work out the first time you meet them. See if you agree!

Defending three no-trump you lead the heart three, to the queen, king and ace. Declarer crosses to dummy with the diamond ace, and finesses a diamond to the jack and your queen. You take the heart jack, which collects the two and nine. Over to you.

Declarer has tried to persuade you that he had only two hearts originally, and that your partner started life with five hearts. However, East’s play of the heart two at his second turn should be giving you standard remaining count, thereby suggesting that at the time he made the play of the two your partner had only three hearts left, and thus that it is declarer who has the heart eight.

It looks necessary to take three tricks quickly to set the hand, and your best bet is to find partner with the spade king. So shift to spades now; but that in itself will not suffice; you must shift to the spade jack to surround dummy’s spade queen. Now, whatever declarer does, he has to go down.

Just to clarify: If your partner had started life with K-8-7-5-2 of hearts left he should play the eight or seven at his second turn, and give you the count.


Dummy rates to be pretty strong, since West doesn't seem to have that many hearts. Since your partner didn't overcall, you could make a good case for underleading the club ace to the first trick. Much depends on your partner's ability to take a joke, though. If he is the sort of person who has never underled an ace and doesn't expect you to do that, maybe lead a low spade or start with the club ace.

LEAD WITH THE ACES

♠ J 5 4
 K 8 3
 9 6 5
♣ A 9 6 2
South West North East
Pass 1 Pass 3
Pass 4 All pass  

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Sunday, February 15th, 2015

I opened one heart in first seat with: ♠ A-Q-9-7,  A-Q-8-6-5,  10-5, ♣ K-3 and heard my partner raised to two hearts and RHO now joined in with three clubs. How would you rate my options of pass, double, three diamonds, and three hearts?

Big Game Hunter, Richmond, Va.

Passing is unduly pessimistic while double should be strong and extra values, not quite what you have. Your real extra distribution makes bidding three hearts as a purely competitive maneuver logical enough, but slightly pessimistic. Meanwhile a call of three diamonds is an unspecified game-try (one does not have space to make the call about diamonds). I'd settle for that action.

My partner and I want to establish a firm agreement about what is the significance of discarding an honor at your first opportunity. Equally, when you follow with an honor under a high-card lead from your partner, or an honor from dummy, what should that mean?

Fever Pitch, Newark, N.J.

If you drop an honor on partner's high-card lead, it suggests either at most a doubleton, or a suit solid down from that card, denying a higher honor. Similarly discarding a queen would suggest the jack and maybe the 10, but no king. Warning: very occasionally playing an unnatural honor might be suit-preference, or a wake-up call to find an unusual play.

Holding ♠ A-7-3-2,  A-5-3,  Q-9-5, ♣ A-4-2, I opened one club and heard my partner respond one heart. What is my best rebid now, one spade, one no-trump or two hearts?

No Second Chance, New Orleans, La.

I prefer a rebid of one no-trump – I might even try two hearts, though that would be very rare on a 4-3-3-3 pattern. I'd be unhappy to make a call of one spade, which to my mind guarantees shows at least four clubs. If you buy in to the idea that rebidding one spade then raising hearts would show a 4-3-1-5 pattern and a non-minimum, you have to go some way other than bidding one spade at your second turn. Otherwise you never get to show delayed heart support without promising extras.

Yesterday I played in a rubber group for the first time, and opened one no-trump on 17 points with a doubleton heart ace. My partner responded three hearts and when I played safe and raised to game we made six. Although they play transfers, she thought her bid showed a game force with six hearts. I thought it was better to make the strong hand declarer, and that the transfer would have given more room for the exchange of more information.

Chatty Kathy, Grenada, Miss.

One does not have to play conventions here but if playing transfers (and especially if playing Texas Transfers as well) then a two-level transfer and jump to game can be used for a mild slam try. Now we can get sophisticated and use the three-level bids for some of the awkward hands such as hands with both minors, or even 5-5 hands with both majors.

I have the feeling you like to get into auctions quickly, but would you make a take-out double after hearing one club to your left, and one spade to your right holding: ♠ Q-10-5,  A-K-7-5,  K-7-5, ♣ A-8-3?

Trouble City, Bellevue, Wash.

I consider action here mandatory. I think direct action safer than passing and then balancing. But I would refer to bid one no-trump showing a strong balanced hand, rather than double, despite my four-card holding in the other major. You should not play one no-trump as unusual, except by a passed hand – you have double and a call of two no-trump for the unbid suits.


For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Saturday, February 14th, 2015

(His) dispatch of business was extraordinary, his maxim being 'The shortest way to do many things is to only one thing at once.'

Samuel Smiles


West North
East-West ♠ A K Q 2
 Q 4 3
 J 5
♣ A Q 9 3
West East
♠ J 6
 2
 K 10 8 7 6
♣ K J 8 6 4
♠ 8 4 3
 K J 10 9 7 6
 A 2
♣ 10 2
South
♠ 10 9 7 5
 A 8 5
 Q 9 4 3
♣ 7 5
South West North East
1 Dbl. 1
1♠ 2♣ 4♠ All pass

2

Today's deal from last year's NEC tournament comes from Hinden's successful semi-final match against an Australasian team.

Francis Hinden’s one spade call would surely be a unanimous choice here as South. This argues that since game is nothing special here, maybe the North hand is worth nothing more than a strong invitation?

Be that as it may, Hinden was forced to play four spades on a heart lead, and when she put up the queen, the hand was over. East covered the queen with the king and declarer could scramble two club ruffs in her hand while drawing trumps, but had to lose four red tricks at the end.

Better is to win the first heart in hand while preserving dummy’s queen. Then you can take the club finesse, cash the club ace, ruff a club, cross to the spade king, ruff a second club and take the two master trumps.

In the five-card ending the key is now whether to play West to have opened so light, or for South to have responded one heart with only a four-count. If you can read the location of the high cards, you can succeed now by leading the low diamond from dummy. If East ducks, he will eventually be endplayed with the second diamond to lead hearts. If he rises with the ace, declarer builds his game-going trick either from dummy’s heart or her own diamonds.


It might be worth emphasizing that with one-bid hands like this, the normal response is to bid spades, rather than diamonds. The logic is that if your side has a game it is far more likely to be in spades than diamonds. If your partner has clubs and diamonds with reversing values, you will hear about it soon enough.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ 10 9 7 5
 A 8 5
 Q 9 4 3
♣ 7 5
South West North East
Pass Pass 1♣ Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Friday, February 13th, 2015

Teach us that wealth is not elegance, that profusion is not magnificence, that splendor is not beauty.

Benjamin Disraeli


North North
Both ♠ Q J 8 7 6 5
 J
 Q 10 7
♣ A 8 3
West East
♠ 10 3
 9 8 4 3
 9 2
♣ K Q 9 6 5
♠ A K 9 4
 10 6 2
 A J 8 6 3
♣ J
South
♠ 2
 A K Q 7 5
 K 5 4
♣ 10 7 4 2
South West North East
1♠ 2
2 Pass 2♠ Pass
2 NT All pass    

9

At last year's NEC tournament In the round six encounter between Down Under and Hinden both pairs had an opportunity to show off their skills.

Had Graham Osborne opened a weak two spade bid he might have gone quietly plus in that spot. But he opened one spade, and Francis Hinden was obliged to make a try for game. Of course two no-trump was a considerably more testing spot than two spades would have been, after Peter Newell’s lead of the diamond nine. After this lead, Hinden made the first nice play of the deal when she put up the diamond queen from dummy. If West ducks that, Hinden’s plan would have been to unblock the heart suit then play a second diamond toward her king and come home with eight tricks.

Martin Reid therefore won the diamond ace and responded to declarer’s coup with one of his own. He played back the diamond jack at trick two, forcing declarer to win the diamond in her hand, and cutting her off from the heart suit. From that point on declarer had only six winners.

This was a much admired play in the reports of the time. But note that if the spade 10 and two were reversed, declarer would have been able to succeed. She could have won the diamond, unblocked the heart jack, then cashed the club ace and played a spade towards her 10.

So perhaps winning the diamond and playing the club jack at trick two might have covered all the bases equally efficiently?


When you bid two clubs in front of your partner, you indicated your unsuitability for defending to spades. Your partner heard you, and indicated that he really wanted to defend two spades. You should pass, and my guess would be to lead trumps to the first trick. Yes, you saw that right!

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ 2
 A K Q 7 5
 K 5 4
♣ 10 7 4 2
South West North East
1 Dbl. Rdbl. 1♠
2♣ 2♠ Dbl. Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Thursday, February 12th, 2015

Minorities are individuals or groups of individuals especially qualified. The masses are the collection of people not specially qualified.

Jose Ortega y Gasset


East North
Neither ♠ K Q 7 6 5
 —
 A Q 7 4
♣ J 10 9 5
West East
♠ J 8 2
 A J 5 3 2
 J 8 6
♣ 7 6
♠ 9 4
 Q 10 6 4
 K 9 3 2
♣ A 4 3
South
♠ A 10 3
 K 9 8 7
 10 5
♣ K Q 8 2
South West North East
1* 1 Dbl.** 3
Pass 3 4 Pass
4♠ All pass    

*Two plus cards

**4 or 5 Spades

♣7

Today's deal determined who would take the vital eighth qualifying spot in the NEC tournament last year and advance to the knock-out phase.

In one room where declarer was part of a Dutch-Russian team the opening lead of the heart ace did not paralyze declarer, and South made 11 tricks in a canter.

In our featured room clubs were an unbid suit, so Bas Drijver led one, and the defense played two rounds of clubs. Declarer elected to draw a couple of rounds of trump and take a diamond finesse, allowing the defenders to take the club ruff, which left declarer with just nine tricks, and no qualifying place.

Declarer should have come home by simply taking the diamond finesse at trick three. Although the defenders can take a ruff, you get to ruff a diamond low and a diamond high when the suit breaks 4-3 long on your right. When the outstanding trumps are 2-2 you can now draw them all without loss.

Declarer still had a chance after drawing two rounds of trumps. Instead of playing diamonds, cash the two clubs — if West ruffs he will be endplayed. But if he doesn’t ruff what does he discard? If he pitches two hearts you play to ruff a diamond in hand. If he pitches a heart and a diamond to stop threaten an overruff, take the diamond finesse, ruff the heart return, then draw the last trump. When you cash the diamond ace, dummy’s diamond 7-4 will be worth a trick against East’s 9-3!


This is partly a matter of style. From my perspective, raising partner with three trumps is perfectly acceptable, so long as you have a ruffing value, and the alternative of one no-trump is unattractive. Here raising to two spades looks best, since your small doubleton diamond looks anti-positional.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ A 10 3
 K 9 8 7
 10 5
♣ K Q 8 2
South West North East
1♣ Pass 1♠ Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

Fame is no plant that grows on mortal soil.

John Milton


South North
East-West ♠ 9 6 2
 8
 A K Q J 6 4 3
♣ 10 5
West East
♠ J 5
 A Q J 10
 8 7
♣ A Q 8 7 6
♠ Q 7 3
 9 7 6
 10 9 5 2
♣ K 9 4
South
♠ A K 10 8 4
 K 5 4 3 2
 —
♣ J 3 2
South West North East
1♠ 2♣ 4♠ All pass

8

In today's deal from the NEC tournament last year both Wests led their doubleton diamond against four spades. Both declarers pitched three club losers as West ruffed, then exited with the spade jack. Here the two lines of play diverged slightly.

In both rooms South won, and here the paths changed. One declarer led out the second top spade, and when the queen did not drop he played the heart king to try to arrange a heart ruff in dummy. The other declarer tried the more subtle approach of leading the spade eight from hand first, but East ducked, to deny declarer an entry to dummy with the spade nine. After that trick, declarer also played the heart king to arrange a ruff in dummy, but he too was unable to take more than nine tricks.

At a third table Sue Picus found the way to come to 10 tricks. She too won the diamond lead in dummy and continued with top diamonds, pitching her clubs, as West ruffed the third round and tried the club ace.

Picus ruffed and got out with a heart. West won the heart and continued clubs, so Picus ruffed again, and cashed the spade ace, deciding from the fall of the jack to play West for no more spades. She ruffed a heart, cashed the diamond jack, pitching a heart, then continued diamonds. East could ruff in whenever he wished, but Picus could overruff and ruff another heart in dummy for her 10th trick.


There are many bridge players who would propel themselves into a dicey 5-2 fit and bleat in apology "But I had 5-5 partner!". Don't be that guy; if your partner cared about your fifth heart he had many forcing actions available to him to find out about it. Pass three no-trumps and hope your partner is in good declaring form.

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ A K 10 8 4
 K 5 4 3 2
 —
♣ J 3 2
South West North East
1♠ Pass 2 Pass
2 Pass 3 NT Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

Sometimes we focus so much on what we don't have that we fail to see, appreciate, and use what we do have!

Jeff Dixon


South North
Neither ♠ J 7 5 4
 K 4 3 2
 K
♣ J 7 3 2
West East
♠ A K Q 9 8 3
 A 9 5
 4 3
♣ 9 5
♠ 10 2
 10 7 6
 Q 10 8 5
♣ K 10 8 4
South
♠ 6
 Q J 8
 A J 9 7 6 2
♣ A Q 6
South West North East
1 1♠ Dbl. Pass
2 2♠ Pass Pass
Dbl. Pass 2 NT Pass
3♣ All pass    

♠K

All the deals this week comes from last year's NEC tournament in Yokohama. In three clubs Willie Whittaker received repeated spade leads, and ruffed, then unblocked the diamond king and led a heart to the queen and ace. Back came a heart, after which declarer can succeed by cashing his winners, taking a trump finesse, then ruffing two diamonds in dummy to score the ace-queen of clubs and four red-suit winners, plus three ruffs. Instead Whittaker played to ruff a diamond before cashing the second heart trick and that let West get a heart away. Better defense for West would have been to lead the third top spade when in with the heart ace, which promotes an additional trump winner and ensures the defeat of the contract.

In the other room the contract of three diamonds looked more playable; but again, if the defenders play three top spades early on, it may let East discard a heart loser.

In fact, though, after a top spade lead West shifted to trumps. Declarer voluntarily ruffed a spade to hand, and that let West subsequently play a third spade without setting up dummy’s jack. Declarer subsequently misjudged the play to go down two.

By contrast, when Ashley Bach for team Lorentz played three diamonds, he ruffed the spade at trick two and led the heart queen to the ace. He won the trump return, crossed to the heart jack and played three rounds of trumps. East could take two trump tricks but then had to lead a heart or club, allowing declarer to test both suits, and come home with nine tricks.


There is no single best treatment after opener's reverse, but I recommend that raising either of opener's suits is game-forcing. A rebid of your own suit (two hearts here) shows at least five cards and is a one-round force. The cheaper of fourth-suit and two no-trumps is an artificial negative, the other call being forcing. So here preference to three clubs is natural and forcing; perfect!

BID WITH THE ACES

♠ J 7 5 4
 K 4 3 2
 K
♣ J 7 3 2
South West North East
Pass Pass 1♣ Pass
1 Pass 2 Pass
?      

For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact theLoneWolff@bridgeblogging.com. If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2015. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact reprints@unitedmedia.com.

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