Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dealer: North

Vul: None


10 6

K J 9 4

7 4 2

10 9 4 3


J 7 5

Q 10 8 6 3

J 9 8 3



A K Q 9 8 4 2


K Q 10 5




A 5 2

A 6

A K Q J 8 7 5


South West North East
    Pass 1
Dbl. Pass 2 4
5 5 6 Pass
Pass Dbl. All Pass  

Opening Lead: 5

“When I am grown to man’s estate

I shall be very proud and great,

And tell the other girls and boys

Not to meddle with my toys.”

— Robert Louis Stevenson

All the deals this week come from the Junior European tournament held last year in Romania. As mentioned yesterday, there was not only a junior event, but a schools tournament and a girls’ championship, from which today’s deal comes.

The action was from the match between Turkey and Italy, and the heroine was Ozge Tekin. A spirited auction saw Tekin as declarer in six clubs doubled, facing the lead of the spade five. Italy’s Giorgia Botta won the ace and switched to the diamond king. Tekin won her ace, drew trumps, and realized that she needed to bring in the hearts for four tricks to make her slam. It is clear what the percentage line in that suit is: you cash the ace, lead low to the jack, and if the 10 doesn’t appear on the right, play off the king — unless the auction or play thus far has pointed you in another direction.

Tekin duly cashed the heart ace, but paused to reconsider the information already available to her. Because East had bid four spades on her own and seemed to have diamonds also, Tekin judged her to be short in hearts. So instead of leading a heart to the jack, she finessed the nine, came back to hand with a trump, and finessed the heart jack, thus recording 12 tricks for a magnificent plus 1,090.


South Holds:

10 6
K J 9 4
7 4 2
10 9 4 3


South West North East
  Pass 2 Pass
2 Pass 3 Pass
ANSWER: With these values it is a close choice between bidding hearts and supporting partner. I marginally prefer raising clubs directly rather than introducing the hearts before supporting clubs. It may be critical to partner for slam purposes to know of real as opposed to secondary club support. Still, we may belong in three no-trump and won’t get there if you raise clubs.


For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2010. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact