Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, August 31st, 2021


Iain ClimieSeptember 14th, 2021 at 11:02 am

Hi Bobby,

West could even have led the SA and then switched to a D to beat the contract – South will run out of steam eventually and loses 3S (barring an endplay) and at least one club assuming he ditches a card from each minor on the HAK. Still, if West wasn’t going to find the trump lead, he was right not to double; Terence Reese quoted a story from a congress one year when a player on lead against 7N neither doubled nor led the ace she held so the contract made. If she wasn’t going to lead the Ace, she was quite right not to double.

I’m not sure what happens on a small trump lead, though when South recovers from having an extra entry to table. It is irrational but I think still enough to beat the contract.



bobbywolffSeptember 14th, 2021 at 1:50 pm

Hi Iain,

The opening quote is indicative of what to expect.

Why would North only rebid 2 hearts with his 1-7-4-1 excellent playing hand with a very good suit to boot?

In order to get the play at 4 spades is the correct reply, where West’s chunky spade holding served more a hindrance than an asset.

At least to me, this hand, more than almost any other, is quite the example of the unpredictability of an enormous trump holding, which, because of the opening lead (hard to quarrel with) served as more of a liability, because of the timing, than what it looked to be.

In summation, today’s extravaganza is the poster child for what happens now and then, when the position of what looks like defensive dynamite, turns into not being able to keep out of bridge defense harm’s way (short for falling over oneself), when declarer is both blessed with a path to success and above all, he was, of course, adept enough to take total advantage.

Chalk it up to an active imagination by the creator, together with a learning experience, which emphasizes Donald Duck’s famous expression, “This is not what it is quacked up to be”, but occasionally does happen (although almost never this bold).

Playing bridge does create some exciting moments, with this hand a good example, but all of us, who love the game itself, might just write it off, with the bidding having gone, 1 heart, P, 1 spade, P, 4 hearts, all pass, down a couple with a diamond lead.

Thanks to you for your always pertinent indulgence with whatever foolishness we may create, with entertainment, often lurking within our game, the main excuse.