Hindsight 20/20?


frs1016@centurylink.net

Today’s deal appeared in the excellent Daily Bulletin at the ACBL Fall Championships. In a pairs event, North-South bid and raised spades. Then East came in with a “pre-balancing” double, and West took out to three clubs. North pushed on to three spades, passed out.

Dlr: North ♠ 10 9 2
Vul: None Q 10 6 2
10 8 4
♣ A K 9
♠ 8 6 5 ♠ 4 3
9 8 A 7 5 3
K J 5 A Q 6 2
♣ Q 10 5 4 3 ♣ J 7 6
♠ A K Q J 7
K J 4
9 7 3
♣ 8 2
North East South West
Pass Pass 1♠ Pass
2♠ Dbl Pass 3♣
3♠ All Pass

Opening lead — 9

West led the 9, and East slipped by winning and returning a heart, hoping his partner would ruff. South drew trumps and threw a diamond on dummy’s fourth heart, making four for plus 170 — a top score.

Hindsight

East thought he might have opened 1 — much easier in hindsight. He also thought North should have doubled 3♣ to show a good defensive hand, inviting South to play for a penalty. East observed that North-South would be plus 300 against 3♣ doubled.

I doubt that. North-South would win six tricks on defense only if North led a heart — not exactly clear. Even then, if West took the ace and led a spade, South would have to win and lead a trump, ducked (!) by North.

Daily Question

You hold: ♠4 3   A 7 5 3  A Q 6 2   ♣J 7 6.
Your partner opens 1♠, you respond 2, he rebids 2♠ and you try 2NT. Partner then bids 3. What do you say?

ANSWER
Your partner is looking for a place to play. His bidding suggests six spades, diamond tolerance and no desire to play at game or at notrump. Bid 3♠ or perhaps (if you are vulnerable) 4♠. Partner may hold ♠A K 10 8 5 2  2 K 10 5  ♣ Q 3 2.
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