Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Tuesday, 20 February, 2024


Iain ClimieFebruary 20th, 2024 at 1:27 pm

HI Bobby,

What inference (if any) should West draw from East’s failure to double the cue-bid wither here or if the bid were just an unassuming cue-bid or similar. I would suggest that in this specific case, not doubling either indicates not holding SAK or holding SAK but with a willingness or even preference for a red suit lead. If the cue-bid were a UCB, then double should really yell for the lead (e.g. KQJ9x(x), KQJ10x(x)) especially vs NT although I suppose LHO might hold A108x and play 3N in the first case. It strikes me that negative inferences from partner’s silence when they have an obvious bid available could be fertile ground for system improvement.



A V Ramana RaoFebruary 20th, 2024 at 2:19 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
On a heart lead, if only had declarer been in possession of that nine of hearts ( instead of west) he can even amusement himself by ruffing two spades and running trumps strip squeezing east.

A V Ramana RaoFebruary 20th, 2024 at 2:20 pm

Amuse himself, not amusement ( auto correct again)

bobbywolffFebruary 20th, 2024 at 3:14 pm


And with your always correct and often vital, bridge playing suggestions, please never
worry about auto correct supplements. “Aces on Bridge” is indeed fortunate for all you continue, to both teach and always improve.

BTW, why aren’t all of us allowed to erase
and improve, even after making a mistake (often done by me)?

bobbywolffFebruary 20th, 2024 at 3:28 pm

Hi Iain,

While I generally agree to your shout out to help partner with the often vital opening lead, never underestimate by fairly often, upon doing so (doubling or not is almost always the choice) it may (perhaps often) allow those clever opponents to use that space to better inform partner, either positive or negative additional information, where without the double it goes without saying those opponents might be less informed to rightfully find the better final contract. Not always the case, but, I think worth mentioning.

Iain ClimieFebruary 20th, 2024 at 4:01 pm

HI Bobby,

Fair point as South would now have redouble and pass available, so this cuts both ways. I take your point on West’s lead today given that North will be known to have short spades. I suspect many West’s will lead a trump rather than a heart, though. A diamond lead misfires today of course, but hands can always be constructed to justify almost any choice at T1 – that’s the beauty and maddening aspect of the game together.