Congratulations to Laura Woodruff and Mia Deschepper on winning the pairs event and to Sheila Shea, Margaret Barnes, Andrea Knox and Sarah Amos on winning the teams.
Laura shared the following hand from the pairs
Board 18 NS Game Dealer E
14 HCP 9
Ceri Pierce was in 3S on the following auction:
Pass – (1S) – 2H – (3S) – X – all pass
The 2H bid was not for faint hearted and the double was described as nebulous (west (Mia) thought it was penalties, whereas Laura thought it was showing the other 2 suits and some values) but pass was a fair enough choice in the circumstance. The H3 was led , which Laura won with the ace and she played a club to the ace and Mia had to be awake and not try for a heart ruff, but to return a club; because a 3rd heart would allow declarer to discard a club from dummy. Mia duly returned a club (well done!), and now Laura played the HJ to partner’s king for the JS to come into play. Plus 500 was all the match points.
Laura reports a nice play problem on this board
Board 28 NS Game Dealer W
8 HCP 10
“The auction was not everyone’s cup of tea: 1H – 2H – 2NT – 4H (!). I don’t think I can make 4H legitimately, but I didn’t pick up the hand records and the online version doesn’t give the making contracts.
West led the D5. It looks as if you want to win that in hand, play another diamond and ruff one. But if you do that, you will struggle to get to dummy enough times to take the trump finesse and play a club up. I therefore won on the table (East contributed the D7) and ran the H10 to the king on my left. West returned another diamond, won in hand. Now I need to ruff a spade to get to dummy to finesse against the HJ, but I haven’t got a convenient entry. In any case, even if the CA is onside, that’s still only 8 tricks (2 diamonds, 4 hearts, a club and a spade. The contract looks hopeless.
I cashed the ace of spades and played the jack. West won with the king. Presumably fearing that playing another diamond would allow me to establish the 9, she returned a club to her partner’s ace. I think East should probably play a spade (if she’s not going to play a trump), but she could see the CJ now bare on the table so pinned it with the queen instead.
A glimmer of hope appeared. I won the CK, ruffed a spade and ruffed a diamond On this diamond East is stuffed: if she ruffs with the HJ it achieves nothing, because she knows I can overruff; if she throws a club I can ruff out the 10; and if she doesn’t throw a club I can cross-ruff the whole hand high.
She threw her small club, I ruffed the diamond, ruffed another club bringing down the 10, played dummy’s last trump to my queen, drew West’s small trump with my ace and made my 10th trick with the C9. That was 10 imps in.
Repeated trump returns beat it by 2, I think, but you can only work with what you’re given.
Sarah Amos shared a hand from the Teams event where the difference in lead made a big difference to the result
You are often faced with very uninformative auctions and the bidding here was one of these occasions; P P 2NT P 3NT all pass and you are on lead with:
These kind of auctions seem to require the lead of a major and as leading a heart needs a lot from partner (and also might destroy partners tenuous heart holding) Sheila Shea reasoned (correctly) that Margaret Barnes could not have enough to help set up her heart suit. She thus chose the spade K which gave the defence the first 5 tricks and +12 imps when a heart was led at the other table.
Board 22 EW Game Dealer E
20 HCP 7
Again well done to everyone and well done to Gilly and all those who helped make this a splendid weekend of bridge