Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, April 27th, 2021


Robert LiptonMay 11th, 2021 at 10:14 am

A good chance for east to do a little thinking when east holds the first trick. Why is south allowing him to hold the trick? That stiff Trump ace should scream at him that he’s going to be endplayed, so do it now.

In truth, a lot of people will switch to the HK, including me on a wooden day.

Bob Lipton

Iain ClimieMay 11th, 2021 at 12:18 pm

HI Bobby,

I flippamntly blamed West at first for not finding the double dummy lead of the S7. Mind you, then South can play the SQ when East covers but South can just play another spade forcing West to win and he reverts to the column line. Even if West had SKJ10 and East not the DQ (and not much of an opening bid either although West would probably bid more thna 2S), South ducked and West smugly played the SK at T2, the line still works though.

I notice North “bid to the level of the fit” despite his wasted SQx.



bobbywolffMay 11th, 2021 at 2:21 pm

Hi Robert & Iain,

Pertaining to today’s column and finding the absolute perfect example of the meaning of serendipity, once declarer sees to duck the opening lead in both hands, and then after winning the next trick and eliminating the major suit cards from both hands, throws East in (surely marked with the singleton club ace after opening the bidding) then allowing a double chance for forcing a diamond lead and being blessed with the nine of diamonds (otherwise known as the curse of Scotland in Nordic bridge lore)) in dummy (not to mention East also possessing the diamond 10 allowing the declarer’s gambit full force to score up his game.

However, in this case, declarer should not be thought of as “lucky” by anyone not named Jim2. However, at least to my mind, if ever a declarer deserved the queen and the 10 of diamonds to be where they were, it is declarer with his brilliant play, who succeeded, certainly not associated with luck, for giving himself a significant extra chance which played out either described in “spades”, “diamonds”, or rightly both, depending on the desired emphasis to be expressed.

Bridge play can be gorgeous, and although this one is completed manufactured, it still is nothing less than thrilling to execute, if for no other reason than if East had begun by instead holding a spade marriage and overtook the opening spade lead, all goes out the window, since the ace of clubs would immediately fall out of East’s hand (at trick two) if allowed to win the first trick then destroying what otherwise would feel so “good” for the defense instead of that then being transferred to the declarer for him to then make use of his “magic” to succeed.

Bridge, like life, can often be beautiful, to just explore.

jim2May 11th, 2021 at 9:36 pm

Robert Lipton –

East never has the lead because West led the JS.

bobbywolffMay 12th, 2021 at 2:09 pm

Hi Jim2 & Robert,

Yes, thanks Jim2, for having my back and explaining what I should