Monday, October 31, 2005

Trick or Treat: Very costly one level contract lead

Board 10 of the 5th segment of the quarter-finals didn't make Tuesday's bulletin, but perhaps it will sneak into Wednesday's.

10 ___ JT652
East _ ---
All __ AK96
_____ A953
3 __________ AKQ8
AKQ86 _____ 97
T72 ________ Q84
T642 _______ KQJ7
_____ 974
_____ JT5432
_____ J53
_____ 8

3NT was a nice EW landing spot. In the Venice Cup, East opened 1C, West responded 1H, North came in with 1S, East doubled this for business, North redoubled this as something, perhaps doubt or big business, and that was the contract.

So the spotlight shifted to East for the lead. A top spade should result in at least +400, but the actual lead of a top club resulted in two club ruffs in dummy and -1120. So the wrong lead to a one level contract cost 1520.

In the Bermuda Bowl, Egypt reached 4H by West, and since North had shown something in the bidding, South doubled with more trumps than declarer. A, K, and another diamond had the queen winning in dummy. Declarer played the heart nine, which won, and then the heart seven, covered by the ten and then the queen. Declarer played a club, and when North ducked, won in dummy, and discarded two clubs on the top spades. Now any card from dummy allowed declarer to score the heart eight, and that was +790 to Egypt, albeit in a losing cause. After the hand, South walked to a nearby window to look at the view before continuing.


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