From the desk of Bob Jones:


October 8, 2012

Hi All,

I filled in this Thursday for a player that was a bit late and I picked up this hand:

Your Hand
bridge hand

I opened 1C and it went 1D-P-P back to me. I doubled and it went 3D-P-P back to me and I felt the hand was worth one more double. LHO passed, partner bid 3S, RHO passed and I had a tough decision to make. Should I call it a day and pass or try to ‘gild the lily’ by raising? I knew that we were getting a diamond lead rather than a heart through my king, so a club fragment from partner might be enough to set up the clubs and bring home ten tricks. I thought this was a very close decision. Just then I looked up and saw the player that I was filling in for standing next to the table. I decided to let her make this key bid. After all, it would be her score, not mine. It took her about 5 minutes to pass, quite reasonable on this tough hand. The full deal:

As the cards lie
bridge hand

North led the JD, which South allowed to hold. North made the obvious shift to the QH. Declarer should certainly duck this, hoping for a singleton or doubleton Ace in the South hand. No luck. West ruffed the third round of hearts, drew trump in 2 rounds, and had to decide how to play the club suit.

A little basic counting was all that was needed. North had led the JD. The 10D was in dummy so we could place North with Jack doubleton and therefore South with seven diamonds. South had followed suit to three hearts and two spades, so therefore could have no more than one club. Declarer cashed the KC, in case that singleton was the queen, and then ran the 10C with an air of supreme confidence. An air that only comes with confident card counting. How about you? Can you ‘put on an air’ like this?