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Sunday 23 June 2019


6 x 6 board rounds

Sandwiches & cake


Need a partner?


HBC Peggy Smith Pivot Teams

Friday 28 June, 7.30

Pivot teams of 4

Members only

Usual table money. 


Sunday 30 June 2019

Oxshott Village Centre

£10pp includes tea and biscs 

1.00pm to 6.00pm approx

Enter via Surrey county website.

Monday 10th December

NS end up in 4 by North after bidding hearts and diamonds in the auction. I was East partnering a novice.

I lead the ♠ 3, not a great start to the defence but the East hand is horrible to lead from. On the layout the only card which doesn't immediately give a trick away is the ♠ Q, good luck in finding that lead opposite a silent partner.

After a low card from dumy, partner also plays low, and declarer wins with the stiff ♠ J.

Declarer continues with A and another diamond and I win. I continue with the ♠ Q, covered by the king and ace, ruffed by declarer. My immediate thought was that we may have lost a spade trick by ducking the first round, but then I realised that having made declarer ruff, she is down to four trumps. If I can get her to ruff again she will have fewer trumps than me and will lose control.

Declarer tries A and another heart which I win. I cash my other master heart and lead another high spade, which declarer ruffs with her last trump, whilst I still hold the 3. She is now doomed, and tries to play on diamonds but I ruff and cash my last spade. Two down.

If partner wins the first trick with her ace, I cannot get the forcing defence going because the king in dummy means declarer is not obliged to ruff the second round of spades, so I cannot shorten declarers trumps. The defence are limited to two hearts, a spade and a diamond (the club loser goes away on the ♠ K), one down.

This hand is a nice example of holding onto your honors to squash honor cards in dummy, rather than hitting thin air. Even if holding up appears to blow a trick due to a singleton, that trick will often come back later in the play with interest. Well defended partner.

Sussex Individual

At first glance this looks straightforward. 12 tricks are easy if the clubs are not 4-0, and if they are 4-0 there are ways to account for one opponent holding four. I won the opening heart lead, unblocked the red suits, played the club ace finding South with a void.


At first I thought this wasn't a problem, I can cross to dummy with the club queen and play through North. Unfortunately this doesn't work, Norths J9 means I need two master clubs in hand to finesse twice, and two entries to dummy. I can generate a second entry to dummy by playing to the spade queen, and if South holds the king the queen is a second entry. It doesn't help now I have cashed a top club in hand, so ended up losing a club leaving me with only 11 tricks, one down.


The correct way to play this is to realise that if North holds four clubs, I need two entries to dummy and the club AK in my hand in order to pick the suit up for no losers. The first thing to do after unblocking the red suits is to play a spade to the queen. If South holds the king, this guarentees a second entry to dummy. After winning the return, cash the club queen which reveals the 4-0 break, then play the club ten through North. North covers (else it is easy) and I win in hand with the king. Cross back to dummy with the established spade queen and play the club eight through North. Again, North covers (else it is easy) and I win with the club ace. The club seven in hand is now promoted and draws Norths last club. Five club tricks made, along with the red suit winners and the spade ace brings the total to 12 tricks.


This hand is an example of the value of careful planning, thinking what can go wrong, not assuming the key suit is going to lie favourably, and if it dosn't, what can you do about it. Once you work out that if North holds four clubs, you need to keep the club AK in hand and two entries to dummy, you can come up with the safety play of a spade to the queen. This doesn't cost, as there are only 12 tricks if the clubs do break, so losing an early trick to the spade king is a trick you will lose anyway. If the spade king is with North, so the queen is not an entry, you have to fall back on the clubs breaking, or South holding four, which can be dealt with by cashing a high honor in hand and playing towards the club ten.

Note that it is more likely that if the clubs are 4-0, it is more likely that North holds four, since South is known to hold six hearts, so it is better to cater for North holding all the clubs even if, in this case, doing so by cashing the club queen first gives up on picking up the less likely four clubs with South.