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Paul's Hand Analysis
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Laws of Duplicate Bridge 2007

I have added a menu entry (see above) 'Laws and Ethics of Duplicate Bridge' which includes a link to the complete text of 'Laws of Duplicate Bridge 2007' as well as examples of Appeals which include several dealing with incidents involving 'hesitations'. And there is also a short article, 'New Laws of Duplicate Bridge 2007 - what players need to know', written by Ireland's leading Tournament Director, Fearghal O'Boyle.

Paul Scannell,

21st November, 2012

Rory's Corner
Accurate Bidding and Defence

A few comments about the bidding. East's hand is quite strong, a bit too good for a weak two (or Multi). South's overcall is routine. I don't like West's 4 bid, as this tends to be preemptive with 4+ trumps, good distribution and not many HCPs. I prefer 3♣ cuebid  showing at least a high card raise to 3 (with this non-min hand we will raise to game if necessary). North is well worth 5♣ with 4 card support and a singleton (partner is more likely to have 6 clubs than 5 for a vul. 2 level overcall). With a 6th heart and favourable vul., East is right to bid 5 as a sacrifice opposite a potentially weak hand.

Now for the defence. At my table Maurice led ♣K. At trick one we lead ace for attitude and king for count. I played the 10. So he knew I had 4 clubs (with only 2 clubs I would not bid at the 5 level) and that the ace of clubs would not stand up. Also I would normally play the 2nd best club, the 9 in this case, to show a 4 card suit, so the 10 must be a suit preference signal, a high card asking for the higher ranking other sidesuit, spades. So Maurice switched to a low spade and we cashed 3 spade tricks for 2 down. Notice that 5♣ makes, so the par score is 300 to E/W, i.e. 5*-2 by N/S.

The hand was played at 12 tables in all. At 9 tables it was 4+1, at one table it was 4 made, at one table 5-2 (our table) and at one table 5♣* bid and made by Claire Burke and Mary Corban, well done ladies. So, N/S didn't compete enough in the bidding at 10 of 12 tables and didn't find the optimum defence in heart contracts at 10 of 11 tables. The defence is harder to find if North doesn't support clubs, as partner may play him for a doubleton club.

Travelling scoresheets for this board in both competitions are shown hereunder:

Mulhern Trophy:

Ryder Cup:

To sum up: (1) with a likely 10 card fit and a singleton (or void), don't be afraid to compete in the bidding at the 5 level, even vul. (2) Know your signals on the opening lead of an ace or a king.

 

Rory Timlin,

2018-12-03