Try this hand

For bridge hands of interest

Careful declarer play

Start with these two card combinations to warm up. In both instances you are declarer in a notrump contract:

1. K42 in dummy (West) opposite your  T76. South leads the queen of this suit; should you “cover an honour with an honour”?

2. Q972 opposite  AK653. How should you play this suit?

Read more: Careful declarer play

Fight for the extra trick

Today’s hand was submitted in the past by Australian expert Tim Bourke. Consider the bidding and play.

Dealer South, NS vul.

          NORTH
          T6
          J62
          QJ5
          K9653
WEST                EAST
 AQJ87              9532
 5                  QT9
 T983               K76
 Q87                JT2
          SOUTH
           K4
           AK8743
           A42
           A4

WEST NORTH EAST SOUTH
                1H
1S   2H    2S   4H
All pass

Read more: Fight for the extra trick

Limited losers

Today’s hand comes from the final round of the 2008 South West Pacific Teams Championship, held in Canberra each year. It was a wild hand with some auctions to match.

Dealer South, NS vul.

          NORTH
          843
          AQ76
          J4
          QJ94
WEST                EAST
 2                  965
 T98542             KJ
 3                  9865
 A8752              KT63
          SOUTH
          
 AKQJT7
          
 3
          
 AKQT72
          
 —

How good a hand is South’s?

Read more: Limited losers

Slammers’ paradise

Here is a tough hand from a past Gold Coast Congress, submitted by Nick Hughes.

Dealer North, Nil vul.

          NORTH
          J94
          T863
          T72
          972

WEST                EAST
 Q                  A853
 AKQ94              752
 A984               KQ53
 A84                KT
          SOUTH
           KT762
           J
           J6
           QJ653

How would you bid this hand?

Read more: Slammers’ paradise

Adding another convention?

After partner opens 1S, what do you bid with the following:

♠ QT32
AK98532
A2
-

Read more: Adding another convention?

Beating the experts

Wednesday nights at Trumps are streamed into two sections. The advanced game usually offers the option to stay for analysis of interesting deals at the end of the session, and one or more experts are usually playing. On the hand below, one of the experts pointed out that he had allowed 4H to make – but one of the other players, Alex Cook (playing with Robin Ho), found the defence to shoot the contract.  

Dealer North, NS vul.

          NORTH
          ♠ 75432
          84
          KT73
          J8
WEST                EAST          
J6                AKQT8      
A762              Q953
J942              5
653               AK9
          SOUTH
          9
          KJT
          AQ86
          QT742

WEST   NORTH   EAST   SOUTH
       Ho             Cook   
       Pass    1S     Dble
1NT    Pass    3H     Pass
4H     All pass

The 3H bid from East, being a jump shift by opener, is forcing to game and shows about 19+ points. West raised to show the fit.

Cook started on the right footing with a low club lead; with such a good trump holding, it would be poor to lead the singleton spade because there is nothing to gain by ruffing. On the club lead, North properly played “third hand high”, losing to the CA.

Declarer next played the HA (with Cook contributing the H10), then a low heart to the H9, losing to the HJ. What should South do next?

Read more: Beating the experts

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