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Improvers' hands of the week
18th Sep 2023 10:58 BST
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Improvers' hands of the week
Board 8 – AP Wed 06 September 2023

Thinking it through

What are your thoughts when partner opens 1 on this deal? Mine would go something like:

Well, I've got 13 points, so one way or another we should be ending up in game. We're very unlikely to have a major fit, so the choice is going to be between diamonds and no trumps.

So far so good. Normally, NT is a better option than a minor game, as just 10 tricks in NT scores better than even 12 tricks in a minor. Always provided that 3NT actually makes, of course. So what to bid?

Well, first of all, what NOT to bid. A raise to 3 is definitely OUT. This is a horrible underbid, promising 10ish points, and my partner will probably pass it. Game missed! 

A raise to 4 isn't any better, as it takes the bidding beyond 3NT, which is probably where we want to end up ....

So a diamond raise is out, then. So what will you bid?

I think the best bet is simply to punt 3NT. This describes my hand pretty well: I've got game-going points, no more than 3 cards in either major, and so at least 7 cards in clubs and diamonds. Sure, I haven't got a club stop, but the opps don't know that - with no majors bid, they'll probably lead a major in any case ...

But what if they do lead a club?

Partner may well have them covered herself. And if she doesn't, the opps' clubs might be something like 4-4 or 4-3, in which case they can only take 4 tricks and we can (with luck!) take the remaining 9! 

So you bid 3NT, everybody passes ... and South leads not a club but the Q ...

How does it go?

Swimmingly. Take a look at the whole deal. Partner does indeed have the clubs covered and you can just bang out 11 tricks off the top for a very pleasant 460.

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 31 August), things were all over the place. There were two pairs in 3 and 4 (you can guess how that happened!), one in 5 and one in an unmakeable 6 (which nevertheless made, somehow!). One hapless NS pair ended up going 4 off in 5♠X for a very nasty -800. And the other four found 3NT, all making 11 tricks - which but for the unmakeable slam and unfortunate sacrifice bids would have been a shared top.

In AP, one pair found 3NT, while the other 3 were all in 5 - not great, but a lot better than 3 or 4!


While it's wise to have cover in any suits that the opponents have bid, there's no need to worry overmuch about the clubs. As we've seen, even if your clubs aren't up to much, the opps have to actually find the killing lead. If you're interested in exploring an alternative (but non-intuitive!) response to partner's 1 opening, follow this asterisk. *


*  Your difficulty here is that you either have to bid game yourself (as the 3NT above) or find a response which is forcing - ie one that partner can't pass. A possibility here is, strangely, 2♣.

  • If partner now says 2 you can now bid your 3NT, having (with luck!) put the opps off leading your 'suit'.
  • If partner says 2NT, you simply raise to 3NT - again, hoping you've deterred a club lead.
  • And if partner makes a strong rebid (eg a jump in a major or a jump rebid of 3) you can explore for a possible slam. 

But if that all seems a bit dodgy, a direct 3NT is a great alternative!

Board 04 – Wed 31 August 2023

Once in a blue moon

You won't get a hand like this very often, so when it happens you'll want to make the most of it. *

Even if partner's got nothing but a couple of spades and a few clubs you're probably going to make 6♠, but it's worth checking for a spade fit en route.

You open 2♣ (strong, game-forcing hand) and over partner's 2 response ('Tell more, partner!') show your suit: 2♠. **

Partner now raises you to 4♠: this is a weak bid, but does at least show support for spades, so you're not anticipating losing a spade trick.

So what's it to be? How many club tricks are you going to lose? The answer is, of course, that you don't know, but there's a good chance that you'll only lose 1: even if partner can't help in clubs, she might have the K or the Q (which you'd have to reach via a high trump in dummy). And if she's got the ♣Q or the ♣J10 - or simply 4 clubs - then you're making a slam.

One thing's certain: Blackwood won't do you a lot of good, as you already have every key card in the pack!

Just bid 6♠.

What if East opens?

Before we look at the whole deal, let's suppose East opens a weak 2 before the bidding gets to you. What do you do then? Sure you could double, but at some point you're going to have to bid spades and the overwhelming likelihood is that your partner will pass whatever you bid. So there's nothing for it: you can't afford the luxury of finding spade fits. As above, you just have to punt 6♠. Pretty short for a slam auction!

How does it go?

Take a look at the whole deal. Talk about the luck of the devil: not only does partner have FOUR spades with you, but she also has the ♣Q AND the ♣J ...

You have a 'lay-down' 13 tricks off the top in spades or no trumps: no need to play a single card.

What happened on the night?

Evidently the slam wasn't as obvious as it seems. In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 24 August), one pair played in 2♠, another in 4♠ and two others were in 3NT. Four were in 6♠ and the final NS pair punted a VERY optimistic 7♠, which of course makes! Just my luck that my partner and I happened to be sitting EW at that particular table. sad

In AP, two pairs were in 6♠ while the third - you've guessed it - also punted 7♠ for a top.


*  You'll only get dealt a hand with 27+ points once in every 20,000 hands, give or take a few - that's once every five years if you play 4 sessions a week 50 weeks a year.

** Isn't there a danger that partner might pass your 2♠? Not after your 2♣ opening, no: if she has absolutely nothing, she can bid 2NT. This is a '2nd negative', telling partner you're very weak. In which case, on this hand, you might choose to stop in 4♠ - though I'd still punt 6♠ anyway! 

Board 05 Wed 23 August 2023

Best of a bad bunch ...

With a 17-count, you X North's opening 1, intending subsequently to bid your clubs *, but South raises her partner to game, your partner passes and you wisely decide that punting 5♣ would be pushing your luck a bit.

It's your lead, then. What takes your fancy?

If this were a no-trump contract, no problem: you'd lead the ♣7 - the '4th highest of your longest & strongest suit' - and hope to make a string of club tricks later in the play. Sadly, this is a suit contract. So what's it to be?

Attractive and unattractive leads

Sometimes an obviously attractive lead will jump out at you. For example:

  • a singleton: partner might be able to give you a ruff.
  • the top card in a sequence like KQ or QJ10: at best you'll set up a trick for yourself or if not at least you won't give anything away.
  • Ace from AK in a suit: allows you to retain the lead while you look at dummy and decide what to do next.

Sadly you have none of these, except for a singleton trump, which isn't the kind of singleton you had in mind!

Indeed, the leads offered by all of your suits are singularly unattractive.

Take clubs and spades: our only lead in either of these suits must be the Ace. **  An unattractive choice, as declarer is far more likely than your (obviously very weak) partner to be holding the King. Leading either the ♠A or the ♣A may well give a trick away. What's next?

Diamonds. Same thing. If you lead the 6, you're in danger of gifting declarer a trick with the Q: sure, your partner might have it, but if she doesn't you're again giving a trick away.

Put another way: these are all suits you'd like declarer to lead instead of having to lead them yourself.

The only remaining choice is the 7. Again, not nice. It's usually best not to lead a singleton trump because your partner is likely to have a few and you might be playing into declarer's hands by finessing her.

But given your partner's obvious weakness, it's probably the best of a bad bunch. Let's go for it.

How does it go?

Take a look at the whole deal. How do our four leads fare? First the side-suits:

  • ♠A. Not too bad as it happens, as you drop declarer's singleton ♠K: good thing you didn't lead the ♠Q, though, wasn't it? See ** below.
  • 6. As we feared, dummy's Q takes the trick (though declarer can engineer this anyway by leading a low diamond towards the Q).
  • ♣A. Oops. This is ruffed in dummy, and declarer's ♣K is now worth a trick.

Which leaves us with the 7, which, as we suspected, is in fact the safest lead, as your partner has absolutely nothing in hearts (or any other suit)!

None of this is conclusive: the opening lead always has an element of luck, and sometimes it doesn't matter a hoot anyway, but sometimes it does, and that makes these kind of considerations worth the effort.

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 17 August), all NS tables bar one were in hearts and every East chose the 7 as opening lead. Fairly conclusive. (One East, BTW, couldn't resist punting 5♣, which was doubled and went 4 off for -800. An unattractive result)

In AP, all 4 tables were in hearts, but no-one led the 7. One led the ♠A, two the ♣A and one the K (ouch!). No declarers managed 10 tricks.


*  You're a bit too strong simply to overcall 2♣, which would normally be in the range 8-15 points. With 16+ points and a decent suit, it's normal to double first and then bid your suit, thus showing partner your extra strength.

** 'Don't lead away from an Ace against a suit contract'. If you lead a card other than the Ace, you're in danger of losing the trick to a singleton K ... and so will never make your Ace at all.

Board 09 – Wed 16 August 2023

Just one throw of the dice

Before we get onto the play, a word on the auction. Sitting West, you know you're going to end up in 4♠ as soon as your partner opens 1NT. The only question is: which of you should be declarer? It's up to you: you can either transfer partner to spades and then raise to game or simply bid 4♠ yourself, as in this auction.

It usually comes down to where you want the opening lead to come from. On this deal, I'd prefer it to come round to my hand, rather than through it, as I have a couple of AQs: a club or trump lead might be just the job. Plus I'm short in the red suits, so they're not so much of a problem.


As it happens, North leads the 5. What happens in the first 3 tricks?

You win with the A and immediately cash the AK, discarding the second heart from your hand. That makes the contract pretty secure: unless the trumps are 4-0, you're not going to lose more than 1 spade trick and 2 clubs. 

What now? 

A choice of finesses

Being able to get rid of your heart loser was a bonus. The downside is that you've now used up all your entries to dummy. You're in dummy, so you can now take a finesse – but only one, since you can't get back to dummy to finesse for a second time.

So which is it to be? Clubs or spades?

Well, you've no idea which finesse, if either, will work. So instead, imagine how it'll go with the other suit, the one you'll have to lead from your hand. If you have to lead clubs, you're almost certain to lose two tricks – to the ♣K and ♣J. Leading spades, on the other hand, is likely to cost you only one: to the ♠K. *

So go for the club finesse: play a low club to the ♣10 and hope that South's holding the ♣J. What happens? Check out the whole deal.

It works: North wins with the ♣K ... and you win the return, play ♠A and another spade (yes, the spade finesse would have lost) and when you come in again you can clear North's last trump and your ♣AQ are good. 11 tricks. 

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 10 August), everyone was in the spade game: 5 by West and 3 by East. five made 11, one made 10 ... and 2 went off! Both were West declarers on a heart lead.

In AP, all 5 tables were in 4♠: 2 by W, 3 by East. All made, with just one declarer making an overtrick. 

And finally

Full marks to South for jumping straight to 4 with just 6 points: she has a great shape and just 7 losers, so there's a good chance of making game in spite of the lack of points. 


*  This is because you hold the AQJ in spades but only the AQ10 in clubs. If you'd had the AQJ in both, I'd go for the spade finesse, because after a successful finesse you'd have a decent chance of dropping the ♠K under the ♠A.

Board 8 – AP Wed 09 August 2023

 One or the other  

As a now seasoned bridge player, you're always on the lookout for a major fit – especially with a pleasantly unbalanced hand like this one. If you decide to open the bidding (which you can – you have a perfectly respectable Rule-of-20 opening hand) you'll start with 1♠ and continue with 2, hoping you have a fit in one or other major. What's more interesting is what you do if, instead, partner opens the bidding with 1NT.

Two questions

Before going on, ask yourselves these two questions. What are your answers, and why?

Q1 Do you have a major fit?   and   Q2 Should you be in game?

Answer 1  Yes. Your partner won't have opened 1NT with an unbalanced hand, so won't have more than one doubleton. Therefore she must have at least 3 cards in one of the two majors – you have a major fit, but you don't know which yet.

Answer 2  Again, yes. If you have a fit, you can count your losers. You have only 6 losers, and therefore are strong enough opposite an opening hand to be in game.

It only remains to discover which of the two majors you want to be in. How's it done? By giving partner information about your hand. There are two possibilities:

Route 1: via transfers and standard bidding

  • First, transfer your partner into spades. You bid 2 and she bids 2♠ – she now knows that you have at least 5 spades.
  • Now bid 3 – she now knows that you have at least 5 spades AND at least 4 hearts AND that you're insisting on game.
  • What happens now depends on your partner's response. If she bids 4 or 4♠, job done.
    But if she has just 2 spades and 3 hearts, she'll bid 3NT – she doesn't yet know about the fit! So you now simply bid your hearts again – 4 – and your partner will pass. **

Route 2: via 'Extended Stayman'

This is a natty little convention designed to cope with exactly this situation: when partner opens 1NT and you have 5 cards in each major.

Like last week's Gambling 3NT convention, it doesn't come up that often, but when it does it's very handy. It works like this:

  • You start with what looks like ordinary Stayman: 2♣. If partner responds 2 or 2♠, you simply raise to game: again, job done.
  • But if she responds 2 (denying a 4-card major), you now bid 3. This is the 'extended' bit: it tells partner that you are 5-5 in the majors and asks her to choose the one she prefers, and you end up in the best fit.
  • NOTE that this allows you to stop in 3 or 3♠ if you don't have values for game, though in this case, you'd raise to game yourself.

How does it go?

Take a look at the whole deal. As it happens, your partner has plenty of hearts and spades, so you don't need the strongarm methods detailed above, and most pairs will end up in 4 making 10 tricks. (Note that the 5-4 fit works better than the 5-3 fit, as you can only make 9 tricks in spades.)

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 03 August), 5 pairs played in 4 and the other two in 4♠. All made at least 10 tricks except for one of the 4♠ declarers, who went 1 off.

In AP, all 5 pairs played in 4, all making at least 10 tricks.


*  In an uninterrupted auction, bidding a new suit at the three-level is forcing to game.

**  If partner now lays down a dummy with a doubleton in each major, you should have a word with her about what a 'balanced hand' means ...

Board 02 – Wed 02 Aug 2023

A gambling convention

What do you open with this hand? 1♣? You've got opening points, after all. Or a more pre-emptive 4♣, to keep the opponents out? A better bet than either of these is a neat little convention called the 'Gambling 3NT', for which this hand is perfect. The requirements are:

  • a solid (AKQ ...) long (at least 7 cards) minor suit ...
  • ... with very little in outside strength – no more than a Queen or maybe a Queen and a Jack.

What's the point? Well, there are two points:

  • If partner has a decent hand and has stops in the other three suits (she should be able to guess which minor you hold!), you're going to make 3NT. All she has to do is pass.
  • If not, she simply bids 4♣ and you can pass or correct. In this case, your opening 3NT has acted as a powerful preemptive bid and may have stopped the opps from finding game in their own suit (probably a major).

What happens on this hand?

Take a look at the whole deal. Your partner's hand is almost good enough for a cheeky pass: she can stop hearts and (just about!) diamonds, but has nothing in spades, so retreats to 4♣, which you pass.

What if she'd had one of the other two hands? With East's holding, she can stop both majors, but is helpless in the minors, so again she'd retreat to 4♣. But with West's hand, she'd hope for the best in hearts and pass.

The result? 4♣ goes 1 off but is a brilliant result for NS. Why? Because EW have a stone-cold game in spades, which your preemptive bidding has prevented them from finding. It's a brave West that'll venture into the auction at the four level with just 14 points!

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 27 July), most pairs were in either in 4♣ or 5♣, going off, for a good score. Two EWs somehow managed to make 4♠ for a top their way. And one over-optimistic North left her partner in 3NT, which duly went three off!

In AP, three pairs were in clubs, one somehow managing to make 5♣! The other EW pair bid and made 4♠ for a top their way.

More examples

The Gambling 3NT doesn't come up that often, but it's easy to remember and well worth adding to your armoury. If you'd like to see what happens when partner passes the 3NT opening, there are two other instructive HOTWs on the subject on the Bridge @ Box website – you can find them here



Board 11 – Wed 20 July 2023

Cards on the table

Never mind the auction for now. * One way or another you've found your way into a splendid 6♠ contract. South leads a small club, North plays the ♣5 and you win trick 1 with your ♣8. It only remains to clear trumps, so you lead the ♠A ...

... and South shows out. Annoying. Certainly no overtrick, then. But can you still be sure of making your contract?

Pause ... and fast-forward

Yes! This is one of those situations where you can 'see' your opponents' cards. North's spades are on view to your mind's eye as clearly as if they were face-up on the table: she has ♠QJ8.

It's time to 'pause' for a while, visualise the situation and 'fast-forward' through the next few tricks. Then, when you're sure you've got it sorted, get the job done. This is the situation:

North ♠QJ8

Dummy ♠107                                      You ♠K9542

South ♠ –

How's it done?

In either of two ways:

1 You go over to dummy with the A and lead a trump – but which one? Do you lead the ♠10 or the ♠7? If you've done your fast-forwarding properly, you'll lead the ♠7:

  • If North plays the ♠8 you win with the ♠9, cash your ♠K and she only makes her ♠Q.
  • If she plays high, win with your ♠K, then lead a low spade to dummy's ♠10. North wins but now you can drop her ♠8 with your ♠9.

But if you carelessly lead your ♠10 from dummy, North will cover and you're going to lose TWO spade tricks. Try it and see.

2 Simply lead a low spade towards dummy's ♠10 at trick 3. North will win the trick but then you pop over to dummy with your A and can finesse her out of trumps.

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 20 July), 6 pairs were in 6♠, but only one made it! The only pair in 4♠ did make 12 tricks, however. Somehow, two pairs ended up in clubs.

In AP, three EW pairs were in the spade slam – and made it – and one was in 4♠ making 11 tricks.


* In the auction shown, East's 3♣ rebid is a game force ('new suit at the 3-level') and West, with nothing to add to her 2 response, signs off in 4♠ ... making 6♠ a very reasonable punt.

Those who attended the recent Slams seminars might prefer to open 2♣. How might that go? Click below for my answer ...


An auction starting with 2 ...

East 2♣       23+ balanced or unbalanced with 9+ playing tricks

West 2      Positive response showing points (maybe 8+) and 5+ hearts.

East 2♠       Strong unbalanced hand with spades.

West 3♠      Agrees spades. Slow arrival, therefore extra values and interest in slam

East 4♣      Control bid showing ♣A

West 4      Control bid showing A

East: 4NT   RKCB - mainly to find out about ♠Q. If partner has it the grand slam is on!

West 5      One key card

East 5       Have you got the ♠Q?

West 5♠      No

East 6♠       Best stop in 6, then.

Board 8 – AP Wed 13 July 2023


With a nice 14-count and 5-4 in the majors you were intending to open 1♠ but West has scuppered that with an opening 1NT. What do you do now?

Well, the quality of your spade suit is (just) good enough for a 2♠ overcall, but if you and your partner play a nifty little convention called Landy, you can instead show both your majors at once.

Landy - the basics

Over an opponent's opening 1NT, 2♣ from you shows a hand with at least 8 HCP and at least 4-5 (or 5-4) in the majors. Perfect for this deal. 

How does partner respond? Depends on her holding. There are three main possibilities:

  • with a weakish hand and a clear preference for one major (ie a four-card suit) she simply bids the suit: 2 or 2♠.
  • with a weakish hand and no clear preference, she bids 2, asking you to show your longer suit (or if you're 5-5, your better suit).
  • with a stronger hand (11+ points) she'll bid 2NT, which asks you to tell her your longer suit AND how strong you are. Just in case game is on.

It's actually pretty straightforward. For the details click on the link below. *

What happens on this hand?

Take a look at the whole deal. Partner has a weakish hand (8 points) and 4 hearts, so bids 2 and that's the end of the auction.

And 2 is clearly the place to be. Sure, as it happens, you can make 10 tricks, but with 22 points between you you don't want to be in game. 

Note that without Landy, you'd be playing in a 7-card fit in 2♠, which is not nearly as nice a place to be. 

Recommendation: add Landy to your system and look out for opportunities to use it in future weeks ...

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 06 July), 6 of the 8 pairs used Landy to find 2, mostly making 9 or 10 tricks. Two pairs didn't, so ended up in 2♠, making 8 and (a lucky) 9 tricks. 

In AP, two were in spades (7 and 8 tricks) and two were in hearts (10 and 7 tricks).


* My notes on Landy are available here: Landy notes 2023.pdf.

PS If you've got Landy sorted and want to expand it into something more powerful (though more complicated!), ask me for notes on MultiLandy ... 

Board 03 – Wed 12 July 2023


Sitting North, you've just done a very bold bit of bidding. Once your partner had shown 10 points (you hope!) with her 2 response, you decided that your ♣Qxx was good enough for a club stop and rebid 2NT ... and your partner, who does indeed have 10 points, raised you to game.

Now your heart's in your mouth, because ... IF East leads a low club and West happens to have ♣Ax or ♣Kx, they're going to make 5 club tricks before you even get the lead ...

... but the gods are with you. East leads the ♣A. Which means that you're going to make your contract. How come?

Let's think it through. The situation is that you have just 8 tricks off the top: 5 diamonds, a heart and 2 spades. You need one more. And how it pans out depends on what East does at trick 2. There are two possibilities:

1  East continues with another club

This is a doddle. Your ♣Q has just become your ninth trick. Just cash the ♠AK, A and your 5 diamonds and you're home. Thanks very much.

2  East switches to eg a spade

Why would she do that? Well, she's hoping that somehow West might get the lead and can lead back a club through your ♣Qx to give her lots of lovely club tricks.

It ain't gonna work, but it makes things trickier for you, as you now have to find your 9th trick elsewhere. Where is that trick coming from? And how do you set it up?

Well, the 9th trick is coming from hearts, isn't it? You're quite happy to lose a trick to the K, provided that West doesn't get the lead *. So win the spade in dummy, and lead a low heart, finessing the Q. Sure enough, East wins with the K but

  • you've just set up your 9th trick (the J) and
  • the lead is with East again, which is SAFE for you: sure, she can take her ♣A but if she does, you have the rest of the tricks. Take a look at the whole deal.

What about the diamonds?

Before we finish, here's a tip on handling the diamonds. Suppose you start by leading the K ... and East shows out. Shucks - West has Jxxx and you're going to lose a diamond trick.

Rewind: lead a low diamond to the A. Now if someone shows out, it doesn't matter: you can finesse for the J in either direction, because you still have a top honour in both hands.

It doesn't actually matter on this deal, as the diamonds are 3-1, but sometimes it will matter. Another useful way of staying SAFE

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 06 July), just two pairs found 3NT, both making. The others were spooked by East's 2♣ overcall, and ended up in a part-score in diamonds. Not nearly so good!

In AP, two pairs found 3NT. Both got a high club lead, but one went off. 

Stay safe!


* In the jargon, West is the 'danger hand', the hand you don't want to get the lead. East is the 'safe hand', because she can only lead a club around to your ♣Q, and not through it.

Board 10 – Wed 05 July 2023

"The 5 level ..."

Sitting East, you open a 'Rule of 20' 1, your partner bids 1♠ ... and North comes in with a whopping 4.

What kind of a hand do you think North holds? And what do you say now? 4♠? Pass? X?

Well, North's certainly got a lot of hearts. How strong/weak she is you're not sure, but you do know from partner's response that NS don't have a lot more than half the points between them, and may well have fewer.

It would be crazy to X their 4, though. You have a minimum opening hand, so it would be up to your partner, not you, to decide if they're going off.

So should you bid 4♠ or pass? It's a close-run thing:

  • smiley You have a spade fit and a singleton in their heart suit, and if you don't bid spades now it'll never happen, as partner doesn't know about your spades.
  • frown You're vulnerable, so if they X and you go off it could be expensive (2 off would cost you 500) ...
  • smiley ... but on the other hand, they're vulnerable too, so if they make 4 they'll score 620.
  • frown But will they make 4? Who knows?

OK. Decide ... and then take a look at the whole deal. 

Who can make what?

Well, 4 is making, isn't it? NS are losing just 1 spade and 2 diamonds. So a good thing you didn't X for penalties.

What about 4♠? Against the best defence, you're going 2 off - but as we've seen, that's cheaper than leaving them in 4, even if you're doubled.

So 4♠ is the place to be. And there's one other compelling reason for making that 4♠ bid: it gives the opponents ...

... a chance to go wrong

Instead of Xing your 4♠, N or S might instead be tempted to go on to 5, which doesn't make. Thus giving you a positive score, and a guaranteed top.

To complete the mantra in the title: The 5 level belongs to the opponents. In other words, think hard before you bid at the 5 level, as 11 tricks are a good deal harder to make than 10.

What happened on the night?

In the original Open Pairs (Thursday 29 June), half the pairs were allowed to play in 4, making. Two EW pairs played in 4♠, undoubled, and went just one off. And the other two ignored the mantra and stretched to 5: one went off ... but one made! How do you think they made it? *

In AP, one pair made 3, while two NS pairs were tempted up to the 5 level and paid the price - one doubled.


* Well, the lead was the 10, so I'm guessing that North won in hand, successfully finessed the ♣Q, then dumped her spade loser on the ♣A. A better lead would have been a low spade, won by West, who now switches to a diamond for 1 off.