19 December 2010

Getting let off

The biggest difference between playing on a weak club night compared to an important tournament is the defense. On the club night you get away with contract after contract, it affects your bidding after a while. In a tournament you look at a hand, think "yea this is ok, I've got nine tricks and if this or that I'll get 10 maybe even 11" and end up with eight.
Here's a hand that demonstrates both my love of bidding (that's the nicest way I can put it) and me getting let off by the defense.

Vul: NS
Dealer: East
 Q 8 4
 J T 6 2
 8 7 2
 J 9 8
 J 7 6
 A K 9 7 3
 K 5
 A Q T
 Q 8 5 4
 Q J T 9 6 4 3
 K T 9 5 3 2
 7 6 5 4 3 2

The East hand opened 1 playing precision. It always makes me laugh when a bid is described as could be as short as one, I wonder how many rebids it's going to take to convey the other six of them. I bid a spade, 2 from left and my well trained partner bid 2. Over 4 I bid 4 and a quick double ended the auction.

The defense predictably started with the K which I ruffed and played a club out, West rose killing his partners King and returned a big diamond. I won and beginning to see where this was going I played a spade to the Queen. I had to ruff the diamond from East then in a fit of optimism cashed the K which didn't bring in the suit like it was supposed to. Somewhat resigned I exited a club which West won:

 J T 6
 K 9 7 3
 Q 8
 J T 9 6
 T 9
 7 6 5 4

On winning West cashed his good spade and surveyed the dummy. I'm now down to a single trump and the clubs are blocked, if West forces with a red card I'm going to get 1 trump and 1 club -1100 but happily he let me off by finding the T.

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