ATTACK OF THE TWO-SUITERS by Rich Newell
One of my best partners during the Minnesota phase of my bridge habit was a Canadian named Scott Martin who sadly died in his mid 40’s. Anyone who knows me knows I crave 70% games (I have had 3 of them). For Scott the dream was being dealt 13 cards in two suits, something I don’t think he ever experienced.
Well this fall 2-suiters have been running amok in my life. On October 21 I was with Toby at a sectional in Omaha and was dealt this hand:
♠ - ♠ J73
♥ AKQ7654 ♥ 9
♦ QJT765 ♦ 984
♣ - ♣ KJT975
Unfortunately the opponents were bold enough to bid to the level of 5♠ which makes, so my 6♥ sacrifice was only due to result in an average board. I got a 4-1 trump split and Toby didn’t provide any assistance with the diamond suit. Even more unfortunate, the shock of the hand caused me to lose track of the trump situation and I went down an extra trick for a near zero.
Then on November 7 I found myself in the Los Angeles area at a seminar. I picked up a partner at the Beverly Hills Bridge Club and this occurred:
♠ - ♠ ??????
♥ - ♥ ??
♦ AJT9xxxx ♦ Kxx
♣ AKJ9x ♣ Qx
The auction started 1♦ by me, 1NT by LHO, 2♠ by partner. Now I bid a timid 3♣ which was about to end the auction until RHO chimed in 3♥ . Now 4♦ by me, 4♥ by LHO, 5♦ by me, and 5♥ by RHO to end the auction. I really didn’t think I had too much defense although I probably should have doubled out of principle since partner made a free bid and RHO procrastinated.
Dummy came down:
I turned to LHO and inquired why she didn’t make a takeout double over 1♦. Well she was clearly a beginner who was not well versed in doubles, so she bid 1NT to show her 15 HCP. Declarer had six hearts and two queens to her name, going down two and scoring a top board. I was quite dumbfounded by the turn of events.
The trifecta just arrived today, November 14. This hand was in a Bridge Base Online (BBO) ACBL matchpoint game and was much kinder to me:
ME BOT (CHO)
♠ AKQJ65 ♠ -
♥ AKJ8753 ♥ Q92
♦ - ♦ JT754
♣ - ♣ QJ985
The bot in front of me opened 1♦ making my task simple enough. I bid 2♦ , partner bid 2♥ , and I raised to 7♥ which scored 86%: 4 people tied this result, 11 weren’t in a grand, and 2 didn’t ruff out a spade and went down.
SO EXACTLY HOW LIKELY IS ALL THIS?
The probability of getting all 13 of your cards from 26 particular cards in the deck is
26C13 / 52C13 = 1 in 61,055
But this would be for a specific situation like hearts and spades. As there are 4C2 = 6 ways to choose which two suits your cards will come from, it becomes
6 x 26C13 / 52C13 = 1 in 10,176.
If you play one game of 26 hands of bridge every week, you would expect to be dealt one 2-suiter every 7 ½ years. It’s quite amazing that I was dealt three of them in less than a month!
Submitted November 14, 2017