Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Monday, January 2nd, 2023


Iain ClimieJanuary 16th, 2023 at 1:27 pm

Hi Bobby,

Any case for a trump lead on LWTA? Of course it could go horribly wrong (partner has Qx or Ax with the opposing honours split, for example, or, worse, partner has K9 alone under declarer’s A108x) but it would be passive if partner has two small.

I tend to shy away from trump leads myself but is this an exception and if the holding were (say) 98x or 109x would it be more attractive than as here?



Bobby WolffJanuary 16th, 2023 at 1:31 pm

Hi Everyone,

And after this hand West was heard to say. “Forked again, but I prefer it not to be Mortons”.

Bobby WolffJanuary 16th, 2023 at 2:01 pm

Hi Iain,

Your post was not quite posted when I replied.

No, I do not think a blind trump lead from Jxx on this type of bidding is almost ever justified, and directly because of the possibility to which you mention. While a club lead is very passive, there is no direct indication that immediate tricks are necessary and when your side is playing 1st and 3rd to any suit rather than 2nd
and 4th, in no case is that an advantage, except, of course, to take tricks before they vanish.

And yes, better from 98x or 109x, but still slightly disadvantaged, and from 109x would venture the nine, hoping to make it more difficult for declarer if he is missing 5 to the queen (Jxxx opposite AK8x or J8xx, AKxx and/or when the jack is in dummy and the 8 and 7 or in possession of the declarer as well as in some cases playing the opening leader for the singleton nine, all built around his lead denying the ten.

Thanks for discussing what could be an erst while critical choice.

Pete SagerJanuary 16th, 2023 at 7:48 pm

If West takes the Ace of Diamonds, how does South get to dummy. Double Dummy the Ace and a low trump would work, but it doesn’t seem clear to me how to proceed.

Pete SagerJanuary 16th, 2023 at 8:01 pm

To answer my own question, it seems that cashing the top hearts is best. West will be endplayed on the third heart. However, if East has Q,x,x, the contract seems unmakeable. In that case would West have bid over 2H with five cards in the minors?