Sunday, January 31, 2010

Mental Exercises for Bridge Health, by Jim Kaplan

Forwarded from Life Masters Paul Laliberte and Joan Schepps:

Doctor to elderly lady: “What do you do for mental exercise?”

A. “I play bridge.”

Q. “And for physical exercise?”

A.” I play East/West.”

Those of you who play duplicate bridge know that North-South typically remain at the same table, while East-West rotate.

Here are some mental exercises. Sitting South, with West dealing and East-West vulnerable, you hold:
     S Q J 9 8 6 4 2

     H —

     D K Q J 4

     C 9 5

The bidding has proceeded as follows:
     West        North             East               South

     1H          Pass              2H                  ?

What do you bid?

In a bridgebase.com competition, I bid 3S and West bid 4H, making. Worse, one of the opponents told the other, “North-South could have made 4S.”

Should I have bid 4S? Absolutely, and especially with favorable vulnerability. Let’s take a negative scenario. Suppose I bid 4S, West doubles, and I go down two for -300. If my partner contributes no tricks, East-West can probably make 4H, costing us at least 620 points. They might even be good for a slam.

Sitting South and dealing, with both sides vulnerable, you hold:
     S K Q 5

     H J 10 9 7

     D Q 10 5 3

     C K 4

The bidding had proceeded as follows:
     South         West             North              East

     Pass          Pass             1S                 2D

     3D•           DBL              3S                 Pass

     ?

• Shows limit raise, with at least three spades and 10-12 support points

What do you bid?

It’s a slam-dunk pass. Partner knows what you have and isn’t interested in game. It’s North’s decision, not yours.

1 comment:

William said...

Second problem -

If North has no game interest, how about a pass over West's double? South can always bid 3S. Bidding that way, 3S would be at least mildly encouraging.