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NCBA Committee Meeting

The next County Committee Meeting will be held,
Wednesday 5th February 2019 at 7 pm in Nottingham Bridge Club.

Match Results

Team Captains are invited to email match results to the appropriate League Secretary Jane Hall  for Team of 8 results and Shirley Ashtari
for Team of 4 results

Staffordshire (away) 08/12/2013

Report by John Auld

Another Sunday another search for an away venue. This time whilst expecting to arrive in Staffs and/or Shrops we finished instead at Wolverhampton in the West Midlands.

The teams:

Dawes: William and Daniel Crook; John Rolph and Gerry Franklin; Graham Lee and Frank Ball; Irene and John Auld,

Porter: David Burgess and Lloyd Eagling; Graham Brindley and Nick Clarke; Ian Dovey and Shirley Ashtari; Carol Fisher and Martin Mellor,

Markham: David Cadwallader and Bernard Scanlon; Mike and Daphne Coggles; Dorothy and Chris Close; Janet Jacques and Will Irving.

Amongst competitive players opening bid standards seem to fall inexorably leading to ever more fragile game contracts which often  make despite the odds. This may be a reflection of improved dummy play unmatched by an equivalent improvement in defensive technique. Board 18 was a prime example:  

Typically East opened 1H and reached the poor game. Although I think light openers are overdone I admit that on this hand I would join the lemmings. The quality of the hearts is key often enabling a crucial lead from partner. This game made seven times and went off twice (two pairs stayed low and the twelth declarer made 3NT).

This is what usually happened: South led clubs and declarer ruffed the third round. Now trumps were drawn and a spade finessed. Ace and another spade put South on play to lead diamonds. I do not know how many defenders tried the Jack of diamonds now but declarer usually made the rest. Clearly South should ditch the King of spades to avoid trouble but that is not obvious. Not unless North plays the Jack of spades under the Queen. This is risk free because declarer cannot go off holding K9XX of spades. In fact declarer can always make if North fails to play a high spade because if South unblocks the King then two top diamonds and a spade endplays North.

Every declarer knew how to execute the endplay; no pairs managed a defence.

One of two pairs to defeat 4H was Lloyd Eagling and David Burgess. Lloyd on lead as North chose a diamond-no further problems.

Board 14 was another impossible game:  

East`s 1D was usually natural and my 2D bid showed a spade raise. Irene now did the right thing by bidding clubs and with a terrible club holding and questionable diamonds I knew I should sign off. However I was tempted and I fell for 3NT as an alternative. On a small diamond lead 4S had no real chance.

The Crooks also bid 4S and with more conviction. William got the J of diamonds lead-which could have been a good choice by West but not this time-covered by King and Ace. Now misreading the situation East played the Queen of diamonds setting up the ten. William crossed to dummy and played a small heart fixing East who could not duck without losing his heart trick and could not win without establishing discards for the clubs. +620.

Despite that triumph the Dawes team did poorly. The other teams however compensated with wins. In particular the scratch pairing of David Cadwallader and Bernard Scanlon  did well in the Markham match.