Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Wednesday, March 25th, 2020


Iain ClimieApril 8th, 2020 at 3:20 pm

Hi Bobby,

Without East’s double (or even hesitation and pass) South might well have just played a spade to the Queen, which works well if West has (say) Jx, 10x or 10 / J alone. Yet another case of greed helping declarer bring home the bacon?



Bobby WolffApril 8th, 2020 at 4:21 pm

Hi Iain,

Yes, ultimate greed when either defending, such as what you point out with East’s double, or sometimes at matchpoints, with risking the contract for what could be a high scoring overtrick will, in my general guess show a net loss, oft times those excesses are caused by certain strong willed partners demanding an impossible to achieve, perfection.

IOW, if no double from East on this hand and with a different layout, particularly with the queen of spades located in dummy, declarer goes down a couple (or even just one) a heartless partner will challenge his partner’s general courage, or even manhood (if the genre is appropriate) only to likely cause the next opportunity to also fail (one way or the other).

Result being for both partners to remain quiet after all immediate results (good or bad) and possibly be thought fools rather than to comment and remove all doubt.

However, as we speak, someone around this wide world is penalty doubling, oft times to please what he thinks his partner wants him to do, instead of smoothly accepting whatever results down 1 will be, without blueprinting to declarer how to play the hand.

However, in bridge it is rarely one size fits all, and the ability to separate when to do what, definitely belongs to the really good (or better yet, very experienced player), possibly not pleasing his partner then, but only with his consistent on target results, often chosen on some knowledge of his then opponents, their habits and talent and to a large degree, the psychology involved.

A V Ramana RaoApril 8th, 2020 at 5:37 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
East’s double perhaps was rather not warranted but he could have at least defended properly. As can be seen, the only return from east after winning a spade trick to present the contract is a diamond and east dolefully found it. On any other return, a heart or a club or even a trump ( east must have realised that second trump trick for defense is a myth) the contract has no chance

Bobby WolffApril 8th, 2020 at 7:27 pm


All true, and yes your explanation does play at least a part in my discussion.

However, a partnership which relies on many touch and go bridge decisions is going to suffer (at least IMO) far too many zeroes to be worth
those ventures.

However, to each his own, with the plus in doing so, being the thrill of adventure but at least to me the patient dies much too often.