4×4 powered

Hi all

Here’s one from Star. I think nothing special happened, but it did score extremely well. Why?

South
KT87
T83
A94
KT7

It’s an easy pass first hand. The auction proceeded like this:

West
North
East
South
 
 
 
pass
pass
1
pass
11
pass
42
pass
4NT3
pass
54
pass
55
pass
5NT6
pass
6

1. I have invitational support, but there’s no rush
2. 17-19 hcp, splinter with support
3. Looking at a fit and controlrich hand I took the steering wheel
4. 3 keycards
5. Queen of trumps?
6. Yes, but no outside Kings

West started the King of and the hand played itself. Draw trumps and finesse in for the overtrick.

South Dealer
NS Vul
North
AQJ5
AQJ74
6
A94
West
964
65
KQ52
J863
East
32
K92
JT873
Q52
South
KT87
T83
A94
KT7

It’s a fine example of the power of the 4-4 fit. A lot of pairs were blinded by the fit and landed in 6. Unless you get a friendly lead, this contract is doomed.

Tiny Splinter

Hi all

Here’s a tiny game from last week.

South
KQJ852
A
T54
Q76
West
North
East
South
1
pass
2NT1
pass
32
pass
33
pass
4
a.p.

1. Garozzo
2. relay
3. 8-11 hcp, stiff

After Hoek had shown a mini-splinter in I hardly could suppress my slam ambitions, it looks like a magic fit. But I analyzed Hoek holding the Ace of and both King and Ace in would have entered a normal (11-15) splinter-sequence. So I settled for game. And again there was no play to it.

South Dealer
– Vul
North
9764
J8
J
AJT843
West
A
K953
Q8762
K92
East
T3
QT7642
AK93
5
South
KQJ852
A
T54
Q76

I like games on very marginal values. Both sides can claim ten tricks in a Major with hands on their backs. But any 5-level contract will suffer defeat on an enemy ruff. I like this kind of symmetry, especially when I’m holding the boss suit.

Moysian

Hi all

Some Dombo butler night a while ago I played with Frank. Here’s my hand together with the auction.

South
AQ96
K6
KJT95
A8
West
North
East
South
 
 
 
11
pass
1
pass
1
pass
2
pass
2NT
pass
3
pass
4
a.p.
 
 
 

1. Unbalanced, 4+

I had extras after Frank’s 2 signoff, so I invited for game with 2NT. I expected Frank’s 3 (master!)bid to be a maximum with a good three card fit, and no large (and wasted) values in the round suits. With those values he would certainly opt for 3NT. I had a very easy raise to 4. There was no real play to it, so I’ll show you the full diagram.

South Dealer
NS Vul
North
KT3
QT875
A84
65
West
J4
J932
72
KJ943
East
8752
A4
Q63
QT72
South
AQ96
K6
KJT95
A8

There are a couple of things I like about this game. I don’t bid to a Moysian fit voluntarily that often. On the lead I drew two rounds of trumps before taking the finesse in and I didn’t care if it would win or lose. Dummy’s trump protects me against a attack so I could safely develop my side suit. Of course it gained us zilch, for the Queen of was onside all the time, so 3NT … yawn …

Ripples

Hi all

I’m looking at a lake, it’s black and smooth like a mirror. My pale reflection throws me a furtive look.

South
K73
Q8754
A
KJ86

My RHO opens 1 and I have to decide if this hand (it’s pairs) is worth a bid. I have full values but the suit is terrible. The idea partner cannot bid in fourth position because of shortness pushes me to 2, I’m glad nobody’s vulnerable. Three quick passes follow and LHO starts with a .

North
T65
K3
KT8653
A3
South
K73
Q8754
A
KJ86

Hoek puts down a nice dummy. Such a hand is close to a bid in my opinion, but I’m glad he passed. This is difficult enough already.

East takes the lead with the Ace and fires back the Queen. I take it and West completes the doubleton lead. All looks straightforward, cash the Ace of , cross to the Ace of for a discard on the King. Everything cool, but I get surprised when I play the last from dummy, East discards the Jack of . So far any ruffs in dummy.

My nail breaks the surface. A ripple of unrest leaving me, my consciousness travelling along. Suddenly I see all.

I exit with a small discarding the last from dummy. West ponders for some time and plays a fourth round of (the Queen). I ruff with the King in dummy and East overruffs. East brings in a in the triple void, I ruff with the 4 and West overruffs with the 9. This is the position when East puts the Queen on the table:

North
3
T86
South
Q875

I play small from dummy, East throws another and I ruff with the 5. The picture is complete, East is 5-4-3-1 and has only trumps left. So I can exit with a small trump and end with a fork over East.

I’m not alone anymore, a lonely elk across greets me with a triumphant sound.

East Dealer
– Vul
North
T65
K3
KT8653
A3
West
84
92
Q72
QT9742
East
AQJ92
AJT6
J94
5
South
K73
Q8754
A
KJ86

The lake is still again.