Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Monday, December 16th, 2013

I went out to the woods today
To hide away from you,
From you a thousand miles away —
But you came, too.

Jessie Rittenhouse

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

*Balanced 11-13 or diamonds


In this deal from the Cavendish pairs I thought Geoff Hampson made a nice play to disguise his intentions although the defense certainly missed a chance or two. Having opened a precision one diamond with the South cards, Hampson was driven to three no-trump after Brad Moss (West) had overcalled one spade. Eric Greco as North made a negative double, Hampson rebid one no-trump and Greco raised him to game. The one good thing about this auction was that Hampson had suggested more in spades than he had, so naturally Moss did not lead the suit he had bid, since he held just four spades.

On the lead of the heart nine Hampson took the king and played the club eight to the king and ace, and now Moss did not see the danger of the club suit, whereas if declarer had run the club eight or 10 from dummy at once, the position would have been obvious. When Moss pressed on with hearts, declarer could win dummy(s queen and run the club 10.

Moss ducked this trick, so Hampson played a diamond to his king and a third club. Moss won his queen and exited with another diamond, but when that suit split, declarer had nine tricks.

Curiously, Moss might still have beaten the contract in the ending had he shifted to a low spade after winning the club queen. Declarer had formed the impression that Moss had a broken five-card spade suit to one top honor, and would have ducked the spade — letting the defense run the spade suit.

If you trust your partner, he will have something resembling a three-suited hand with short hearts and close to an opening bid. (How else could he come into a live auction?) Lead a trump, since your opponents do not appear to be overloaded with high cards and have no obvious source of tricks outside trumps. Do not let them get a crossruff going.


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

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 2013. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact