Monday, 25 March 2013

Better late than never

Friday night at St. Andrews! No time to finish dinner, we had to get to the Bridge Club. Made it at 1905, but they'd already started! Apparently, on a Friday the start time is 1900 and not 1915.bLuckily, they had 8 1/2 tables so were happy for us to join and make up 9 full tables.

We got off to a good start. "I wish you hadn't come" joked an opponent on the first table. On the first board, defending 3NT, Anna lead the ♠4 and dummy came down. I sat East.

♠ T 9 5
♥ A 3
♦ 5 3
♣ K J T 6 4 3
♠ A Q 6
♥ 8 7 6 5 2
♦ A 8 7 6
♣ 8

I took the A♠, and played the Q♠. Declarer was forced to play the ♠J from hand and Anna followed with the ♠2. I now knew for certain that we had three more Spades to cash, and the contract was going down. So what did I do? I cashed the Ace of Diamonds, then gave Anna her Spades. That was my highlight, on the very first board.

Later, concentration flagged a little. I was sitting North, and struggled with the extra responsibility of working the BridgeMate, and being in charge of all the boards. At least, when I accidentally brought out Board 13 for the second time, I was the first to notice I had the same cards.

Here's my lowlight:

NS vul
E deal
♠ A
♥ T 7 5
♦ K 9 8 4 2
♣ A J 5 2
♠ Q 8 2
♥ K Q 8 2
♦ T 6 5
♣ T 9 8
♠ -
♥ A J 9 6 4 3
♦ Q 7
♣ K Q 7 6 4
♠ K J T 9 7 6 5 4 3
♥ -
♦ A J 3
♣ 3
--5♥ x
xx 5♠ - -

What an exciting auction! East opened 1♥. Anna weighed in with 4♠, at unfavourable vulnerability. But did she realise it was unfavourable vulnerability? I had a pretty nice hand in North, but didn't really know what to do. I shuffled around a bit, then passed. When it got back round to East, she also shuffled around a bit, then came up with 5♥. Looking at all four hands, bidding 5♥ looks a bit mad. If she was going to bid again, why not bid 5♣?

I decided I couldn't let 5♥ go, so doubled it. This was very foolish. As Anna pointed out to me later, it's likely everyone's got a very distributional hand and my two Aces and a King don't mean much. West could have let 5♥x go, but decided to redouble, with chunky Heart support.

I got a bit scared, and thought about escaping into 5♠. An extra reason for doing this is that now West has shown Heart support I can be pretty sure that partner is short in Hearts, so don't need to worry about my three Heart losers. But basically, I bid 5♠ because I got scared 5♥xx was going to make. West passed out 5♠, which seems a bit inconsistent - if you're not prepared to double 5♠ you shouldn't really redouble 5♥ (I've made that mistake many times, as Anna will tell you).

Anna made 12 tricks, losing one Spade only. 6♠ is an excellent contract, as it only fails if you are unlucky and have to lose a Spade and a Diamond. No way we're ever bidding it though.

Full results here (results are correct, but hand records are wrong).

Final note - we now have a new defence to the Multi Two Diamonds. It's this: double shows either a weak NT hand, or 20+ points. Let's see if Anna prefers this to the old defence, which was simply that double shows Diamonds.

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