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44 - December 2023

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Misplay this Hand with Me

THIS ARTICLE IS OFFERED TO YOU

We are pleased to offer you this exclusive BRIDGERAMA+ post.

Based on his bestselling trilogy of books, Misplay These Hands with Me, Misdefend These Hands with Me and Misbid These Hands with Me, Mark Horton shows you how to avoid misplaying, misdefending and misbidding hands.

Fingerfehlercards

At the end of a match in a long Round Robin where we are bidding with tablets, I pick up:

Dealer West. E/W Vul.

♠ 106
10986
Q1098732
♣ –

West opens 1NT promising 15-17 and East responds 3♣, Puppet Stayman. Attempting to throw a spanner into the works, I overcall 4 and when West bids 4♠ my partner raises to 5. Undeterred, East raises to 5♠. Having pushed the opponents to the five-level I could let matters rest, but 6 could be a cheap save. Instead of bidding it directly I spot an opportunity and bid 6♣. If East-West bid on to 6♠, a Club lead should help our cause. If someone doubles, I will retreat to 6. This has been the frenetic auction:

WNES
1NTPass3♣4
4♠55♠6♣
Dble

West leads the ♠K and switches to the ♣Q. I ruff and… at least I attempt to ruff, but am politely informed that Clubs are trumps. To my horror I realize I have forgotten to go back to Diamonds

As is often the case in this situation the defense is not quite perfect and I emerge with two tricks, losing the small matter of -2300. This was the layout:

Dealer South. All Vul.

Post Mortem
6 Diamonds would have been a good save against a possible 6 No-Trump by West. However, there was no need to bid over 5♠. In the other room, East-West reached 6♠ and South doubled. Appreciating the danger, West ran to 6NT and when North led the ♠8 declarer took all the tricks, North eventually being squeezed in the minors.
Bidding with tablets introduces a new risk – that of pressing the wrong button!

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Mark Horton

Mark Horton, Chief Editor to the WBF and EBL is a prolific writer, his many books including award winning collaborations with Sabine Auken, Eric Kokish and Eric Rodwell.

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