Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Wednesday, March 18th, 2020


A V Ramana RaoApril 1st, 2020 at 12:42 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
Perhaps I am missing something. As I understand , when dummy’s heart seven held the first trick, dummy led spade. East played ten which held the trick. And now , column line suggests playing heart Q. But dummy wins, south comes to hand with a diamond ruff, ruffs a spade noting the fall of Q and leads a diamond. If east ruffs, south overruffs else south ruffs and draws outstanding trump with A of hearrt and leads low spade felling K and has ten tricks via K of spade and a spade ruff, six trumps and two minor suit Aces
But just in case, east held Q,10 and 9 of hearts, West leads trump. East covers dummy’s card, south wind A and moves blow spade. West plays small hoping to put east in. East wins and returns trump. Now if south ruffs spade in dummy, East’s trump gets promoted and south loses the contract. Perhaps it is like that

jim2April 1st, 2020 at 12:55 pm

The opening lead would have been won by the KH, not the 7H.

Thus, the KH is not there on the Board to win the QH return. Declarer must win the AH in hand (with Board following with 7H).

This makes the JH the master trump, with East holding the 10H. Using the JH to draw trump means no spade ruffs, but using the JH to ruff a spade means East’s 10H become the top trump.

Iain ClimieApril 1st, 2020 at 1:02 pm

Hi AVRR, Jim2,

How are you both doing at the moment? I finish my current job tomorrow then start a new one on April 27th (not necessarily the best timing) but I’ve got a large garden and savings so vegetable growing it is for a while! Nobody will ever look back on this time with affection but it’ll certainly be memorable and will remind us that friends, family and good health are most important.





A V Ramana RaoApril 1st, 2020 at 1:26 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff, Jim2 and lain
Yes, but the thought south plays K on lead did not occur to me. But elegantly, even if he had played seven and east covered with ten, south wins A, moves low spade. East wins and returns heart five !! And declarer is done with wherever he wins. If south wins and ruffs spade, East’s Q is promoted . Thanks Jim2 and sorry to our dear host
And wishing lain all the best with gardening ( or is it farming?) Yes, the world has to tide over the crisis at the earliest. Life is getting crippled

jim2April 1st, 2020 at 3:24 pm

I am retired, so this has made my daily alterations smaller and of less consequences than many others.

My kids (with their kids) are seeing far more changes in their lives. So far, the pandemic has not touched us directly. In other words, TOCM ™ has so far been limited to bridge! I’ll take it! No matter how many 9-1 trump breaks and offside singleton honors are needed to balance that!

It probably will, but every day deferred is a gain in its own right. The flow of remedial drugs and supplies, as well as the progress towards vaccines, means every day may reduce risks.

A V Ramana RaoApril 1st, 2020 at 3:47 pm

Hi Jim 2,
So am I: retired I mean since almost a decade.
And perhaps this dreaded virus is here with a message. You might be aware of the fact that globally, the lockdown has brought the pollution levels significantly. So, the message could be: human race, better behave. Don’t ravage this wonderful planet in the name of technology and other atrocious things for pseudo comforts and once the point is driven home, the virus would make a swift exit and a thing of the past and of course, human race having learnt the lesson, would live happily. Let us wish so
And again my apologies to our dear host for the gaffe

Bobby WolffApril 1st, 2020 at 3:58 pm

Hi AVRR, Jim2, & Iain,

Thanks to all of you loyalists above for clearing the decks and thus imagining how giving up a sure trump trick, while defending, may on occasion, glean two back.

That phenomenom likely happens more often than expected because the victim (declarer) not only loses a ruffing trick, but also, at the same time is faced with a Hobson’s choice of restoring the opponent’s trump trick or nothing at all. But since an otherwise decorated player at the table, sitting East also missed it, proving just how difficult to successfully analyze this specfic hand, sometimes gets.

And changing our thoughts back to even a more important subject than bridge (and there was a time when none qualified to me) Judy and I have stayed home for the last 3 full weeks, never straying, and expect to continue for as long as it takes (perhaps another six to nine), but by doing so, and especially at our ages, we both hope to still be around to, at the very least, have a chance to make winning bids and plays.

Both of us sincerely hope, definitely you three (but with countless others, including all of those who write on our site), to find other things to occupy your families spare time (Iain’s gardening an example), keeping oneself sane in order to fight this veritable world wide war against this fierce, relentless, but invisible enemy.

Table up, but please, no carriers invited!

Bobby WolffApril 1st, 2020 at 4:44 pm

Hi Jim2 & AVRR,

It is very heartwarming to read both of your two messages, which, of course, crossed in the mail while I was writing.

While not being formally retired, my writing activities amount to about the same as you two, enabling me to comfortably, as opposed to so many others, live my life without having to even travel to work.

Yes, I very sincerely and like you two, appreciate what I have been dealt, but not without much consternation for a number of our family members who have many other responsibilities to consider.

Both of your letters resounded in both good cheer and optimism for a better world to result from this common and insidious enemy. While and no doubt our civilization is paying a dear price (substantial loss of life) but in doing so let us all understand that together we can succeed (people doing what is best for us all, rather than selfishly, just for a few) and finding a common denominator to which the world as such can all feel united instead of so irreconcilably divided.

In any event it may take a longer time than we all want for this scenario to play out completely, but whatever happens, I certainly agree with both of you (Jim2’s valuations & AVRR’s fervent wishes).

Today is April Fool’s Day (at least in the USA) with all of us wishing this horrible virus would vanish with the onset of midnight, but instead, perhaps it is nature’s way of asking the world to come together in peace instead of hate by all of us adjusting our feelings against this enemy instead of each other.