Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Monday, October 10th, 2011

Dealer: North

Vul: Neither



A K J 8 4 2

10 7

Q J 10 5


7 5 4

Q 10 6 3


K 8 6 4 3


K 10 8 2

9 5

J 9 6 2

9 7 2


A Q J 9 3


A K Q 5 4 3



South West North East
    1 Pass
2 Pass 2 Pass
2 Pass 3 Pass
3 Pass 4 Pass
4 NT Pass 5 Pass
5 NT Pass 6 All Pass

Opening Lead: Club Three

“To live happily with other people one must only ask of them what they can give.”

— Tristan Bernard

All the deals this week come from last October’s world championships, held in Philadelphia. In the women’s knockout, both tables reached today’s diamond slam. Not surprisingly, neither West found the killing trump lead.


At one table Sandra Rimstedt of Sweden took an early ruffing spade finesse, which lost. She subsequently ruffed one spade in dummy to pitch her second spade on the top heart, conceding down one when trumps did not behave.


Sylvie Willard of France guessed better. She won the heart lead and took an immediate spade finesse. She then arranged to ruff two spades in dummy. When they split, she had more than enough trumps and entries to come back to hand and run the top trumps, then play on spades for 12 tricks.


This line was successful, gaining 17 IMPs, but was it best? In the Rosenblum Teams event, where the same boards were in play, both declarers in the match between Zimmerman and Camberos made the slam on a club lead. They won, took the spade ace, and played to ruff two spades in dummy and two clubs in hand. Then they played on trumps, and when the bad diamond break came to light, they cashed the two top hearts, ruffed a heart, and thus scored their last small trump en passant.


This line is better than taking just one spade ruff in dummy (it loses only to spades 5-2 with the short hand having the diamond jack). And it has the merit of being successful, too!


South Holds:

J 9 2
Q J 8 4 2
Q 8 3
A 5


South West North East
    1 1
2 3 4 4
Dbl. All Pass    
ANSWER: The most likely way declarer will score tricks here is on a crossruff. Lead a trump and plan to continue the suit unless it becomes clear that you need to cash out.


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 2011. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact


jim2October 24th, 2011 at 5:35 pm

Congratulations on your Quarter Final victory!

IIRC, the conditions of contest (the same subject we debated several posts ago!) state that the two USA teams cannot meet in the Final.

If that is correct, is your next a rematch against USA-2?

Bobby WolffOctober 26th, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Hi Jim2.

It is and it was. They beat us soundly and were clearly the better team. Result is that they will be playing France in the final who beat Poland by .3 of a Victory Point. We then will be playing Poland for 3rd place tomorrow.