Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Saturday, April 25th, 2020


A V Ramana RaoMay 9th, 2020 at 3:07 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
The hand is an open book after West’s opening bid and the play is virtual doubledummy but for one judgment. When south plays a diamond from hand and just in case, West plays low, though West is marked with diamond Q, south needs to judge whether it is doubleton or three carded with West and a judgmental error can crop up . So it is wise for West to play low and if south judges correctly that West holds doubleton Q, accordingly plays A and low diamond, he earned his success and deserves it. A small point but nevertheless an important one I feel as south is missing J of diamonds

bobbywolffMay 9th, 2020 at 4:29 pm


Thanks for your inclusive post which virtually served and acknowledged an accurate play by play complete with South being better off, but certainly not totally safe at home, if holding the diamond jack.

Obviously when declarer, it is indeed an overwhelming upper to see one’s way from the womb to the tomb, but, as you say, somewhat of an open book, but nevertheless spectacular and worth being broadcast.

As often seen on TV, a mystery solved by the lead role, here not a police detective, but rather a very careful and observant high level bridge player, who plays the cards like they were transparent.

jim2May 9th, 2020 at 5:35 pm

With diamonds obviously blocked, what if West simply plays spades from the top when allowed to win the QD?

Iain ClimieMay 9th, 2020 at 5:43 pm

HI Bobby, AVRR,

East should play D9 under DA if West doesn’t unblock Q. Give ’em rope!



bobbywolffMay 9th, 2020 at 6:48 pm

Hi Jim2 & Iain,

Yes, Jim2, you have just executed an elimination play…….eliminating declarer’s ability to successfully play West for Qx in diamonds.

Your continued remarkable ability to correctly analyze bridge hands causes me to wonder whether you would rather be forever rid of TOCM TM, but having to seriously reduce your given above genius or to continue the curse of it, thereby sending you to the sidelines with its 100% predicted results of “never a break”.

And Iain, yes the falsecard of the nine of diamonds by East, immediately on the first high diamond b dummy, AKA the curse of Scotland (close to home) is definitely the right play to convince declarer what is not, hardly ever the wrong choice.

As Ralph Edwards, the host of Truth or Consequences used to say on American radio many years ago. “Aren’t we devils”!

jim2May 9th, 2020 at 9:57 pm

Elimination play! 🙂

David WarheitMay 10th, 2020 at 1:30 am

Jim2: If W wins DQ and then plays AKx of S, S wins, finesses the HQ, and cashes DAK and CQ. W can discard one H but not two, so he must discard a S. Declarer now endplays W with S9.

bobbywolffMay 10th, 2020 at 5:37 pm

Hi David et al,

All true, but hands which sort of float because of different possibilities of West getting in with the diamond queen, after all, declarer needs to decide which diamond to duck (1st, 2nd or 3rd) not to mention a timely not forced jettison, by West, which need not always believed to be by necessity.

This, in turn is dizzying during the discussion, but doesn’t take away from your correct analysis, only causes some 2nd and perhaps 3rd looks.