Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Friday, December 9th, 2022


A V Ramana RaoDecember 23rd, 2022 at 12:08 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
Perhaps a subtle point: suppose dummy wins the lead and starts diamonds. East would duck first diamond but probably would take second one as it would be difficult for him to visualise south hand. Also, what would west discard on second diamond? If he retains hearts and pitches spade, life becomes much easy for south. If he pitches club, defense may get only two clubs. And even if east ducks second diamond, takes third and returns heart, south wins and cashes remaining diamonds putting west in difficult situation. If west feels that south has KQx of spade, in six card position, he retains four spades and two hearts. Now south can cash high spades and throw in west for stepping stone to dummy’s spade and if west plays ten, east wins and either South’s club Q or dummy’s spade A would be ninth trick in the delightful ending. This is just loud thinking and you may please offer your views
And regarding yesterday’s column: quite instructive one. The duck of J of spades may not occur to all and if not ducked, declarer prevails easily . It is not sufficient if J is taken and another suit led instead of club as declarer gains a vital tempo

Iain ClimieDecember 23rd, 2022 at 5:02 pm

Hi Bobby, AVRR,

It should be obvious to East that South has 3, 4 or 5 diamonds to the J so ducking won’t hurt unless South needs one or perhaps 2 diamond tricks but the defence can set the contract if the DA is taken fast. If West had A109x(x) then ducking a diamond or two might seem embarrassing but has South got enough tricks even with SKQx? 4S, 2D and a heart are nowhere near enough. Trickier if east hasn’t got the CA though.



Bobby WolffDecember 24th, 2022 at 4:20 pm

Hi AVRR & Iain,

Defense is indeed a more difficult task generally than declarer play, by the mere fact of not glaring at all 26 assets for those unlucky defenders.

Thus, more emphasis in brainwork by using imagination lies “in the cards”. Likely no more need be said, but in real life, while at the table, the better worldwide players will be usually judged on their defensive imagination rather than their declarer techniques.

However, any way such topics are approached, the above reference needs to go along.

Bobby WolffDecember 24th, 2022 at 4:23 pm

Hi again AVRR,

No need for me to reply to your learned discussion since you said enough for all of us
to agree.