Club News Sheet – No. 252        2nd Sept 2007

My home phone is 038 422924 and my mobile number is 083 6066880

It is best to use my home number to contact me unless I am at the bridge club.

My e-mail is or

My MSN messenger ID is

to news-sheet main page Bridge conventions No Trump bidding book  
to Pattaya Bridge home page  
    to bridge conventions to No Trump bidding  

Mon 27th          1st  Sean B & Bengt                   68%         2nd  Dave & Lewis                      59%

Wed 29th          1st Dave Cutler                          60%         2nd Bengt & Jan                         57%

Fri  31st            1st  Alan & Lewis                       62%         2nd  Paul Sc.. & Ivy                     55%


Bidding Quiz                           Standard American is assumed unless otherwise stated.


Hand A           Hand B           With Hand RHO opens 1, what do you bid?


AKQ            76                 With Hand B partner opens 1, what do you bid when: - 

J985             K1032          (a)  RHO doubles?

A97              KQJ8            (b)  RHO passes?

765              Q92


Hand C           Hand D           With Hand C it’s unfavoureable vulnerability. RHO opens 2

and this is passed round to partner who doubles. What do you do?

J9876           J10984

102               A                 

9852             652               With Hand D you open 1 and LHO doubles. Partner redoubles

J3                 AKJ8           and RHO bids 2, What do you do?



Bidding Sequences Quiz        All of these sequences occurred this week


E      1      dbl     redbl  2      What is opener’s pass, is it forcing?



The Club Championships       The current standings are: -

Gold Cup = Best 30                 Silver plate = Best 10      Bronze medal = Best 5


1820.8  Jan v Koss                  666.8  Janne Roos                    350.4  Janne Roos

1816.8  Janne Roos                  654.4  Jan v Koss                    340.2  Jan v Koss

1800.8  Dave Cutler                 640.0  Dave Cutler                   336.2  Bengt Malmgren

1736.1  Bob Pelletier                634.9  Paul Savelkral                332.9  Paul Savelkral

634.5  Lars Gustaffson             330.0  Dave Cutler


1.      This news-sheet is mainly my writings but input from members is welcome. If anybody disagrees with me they are more than welcome to submit something for me to include. I have done this for both Hans and Chuck in the past.

2.      I am doing my best about the temperature in the coffee shop. Here is the e-mail response I recently got from the Tropicana management: -

“Hi Terry, Please be reassured that I am doing everything to have the A/C installed.  It is not only you that are complaining, but also other hotel guests.  Just to keep you posted on the progress, the contractor has installed some of the controls and electrical connections.  We are now waiting for the actual installation of the A/C unit.  From my understanding, the lead time is about 30 days (since this unit is fairly large – 300,000 BTU), therefore we are looking around the first to second week of September for the installation.  I will inform you when that occurs since there will be no A/C in the coffee shop at all and I would have to move you up to the conference room.”



Don’t bid your hand twice                                    Board 18 from Monday 27th


North made the perfect bid at his first turn and had pushed the opponents into a hopeless game – but he then blew it by bidding again!


Dealer:             K987                                         West          North         East          South

East                  K9                                              -                 -               1            2    (1)

N-S vul            KQ62                                        dbl (2)       3    (3)      4    (4)    pass

                        Q4                                             pass           4    (5)      dbl           all pass


A2                     N             Q                    (1)  Weak

Q1062           W    E          A854              (2)  Negative, a bit light since it forces partner to

873                    S              AJ1094                 bid at the three level – but South’s bid has

9753                                  KJ10                    made it awkward for West

                        J106543                               (3)  Excellent – raise partner’s pre-empt to the

J73                                             limit of the Law.

5                                           (4)  And now East is fixed – he knows there’s a

A86                                            4-4 fit but has no idea if there are values for game. He eventually decided to bid the doubtful game.

(5)  But North blew it by bidding again. Deep finesse says that 4 goes down but 800 was far too costly either way.


And what happened? 4* by South went for 800 to E-W. Nobody else bid 4 but one South scored 670 when 2 was doubled and made an overtrick.

The bottom lines: -

-         Don’t bid your hand twice.

-         Raise partner’s pre-empt to the limit of the Law and then do not bid again; and when you decide how high to go, look at the vulnerability.

A  poor double                                                      Board 14 from Monday 27th


N-S gave 800 away on this deal for the usual reason – doubling with a flat hand.


Dealer:             AKQ                                          Table A

East                  J985                                           West(B)     North(A)    East(D)      South

Love all            A97                                            -                 -                 pass           pass

                        765                                            1              dbl   (1)      redbl  (2)    2

pass (3)      pass           dbl             all pass

J10984              N             76                        

A                   W    E          K1032                  Sensible’ Table

652                   S              KQJ8                    West          North(A)    East(D)      South

AKJ8                                 Q92                     -                 -                 pass           pass

                        532                                             1              pass (1)      2    (4)      pass

Q764                                          2NT           pass (5)      3NT           all pass




Table A:     (1)  What did you bid this North hand A in this week’s quiz? This North is commander in chief of the ‘double to show points brigade’; never reads the news sheets and would disagree with me anyway.

(2)   What did you open bid this East hand D(a) in this week’s quiz? This is a classic redouble – 10+ points, short in partner’s suit and willing to penalize the opponents wherever the land.

(3)   What did you bid this West hand B in this week’s quiz? Partner’s redouble is out for blood and you should only remove it with a VERY shapely hand unsuitable for defence. Partner is the captain in these redouble auctions – so if you cannot double then pass – it’s forcing.

‘Sensible’   Not a single E-W pair ended up in the obvious 3NT (I suspect that more than one North

 Table:        made the silly double). So here’s how it should go with sensible bidding all round: -

(1)  With not enough for a 1NT overcall, pass is very clear to anybody who has read a bidding book or had read a few news-sheets.

(4)  What did you bid this East hand D(b) in this week’s quiz? This 2 is correct – you need 5 ’s for a 2 bid and 2NT would deny 4 ’s.

(5)  Now  North knows that it would be suicidal to come in – E-W have advertised 23 points between them and any bid is sure to get penalized.


And what happened? 2* by South went for 800. North exclaimed – ‘there’s nothing else I could have done – I had to show my points’. I disagree of course but did not bother to say anything as I did not feel that my opinion was asked for. South did later ask me ‘what could I do?’. My reply was – ‘find another partner’. The other tables were also all pretty silly. One West ended up in 3 doubled making for 470 – I guess that West bid 3 at (3) and North doubled(?), North thus bid the hand twice (when I would not even bid at all). One E-W pair stopped in 2NT (reasonable – East’s push to 3NT is borderline). And one E-W pair somehow played in 3 to score the bottom. The bottom lines: -

-         A take-out double should be short in the suit bid unless very strong. AKQ is not shortage and this North hand is not strong/shapely enough for any action except pass.

-         Do not double to ‘show an opening hand’.

-     When LHO doubles and partner redoubles then no mercy is given – double them and teach them not to double with flat hands. The message may eventually get across.

Responding to (RKC) Blackwood with a void                      Board 26 from Monday 27th


I’ve mentioned this a couple of times in the news sheets but nobody found the cold grand on Wednesday.


Dealer:             8                                                 Table A

East                  J942                                           West          North         East            South

Both vul            AQ96                                         -                 -                 2             pass

                        J972                                           2      (1)    dbl             2              3

4NT   (2)    pass           5             pass

Q93                   N             AKJ10654            6              all pass

7                    W    E          AQ1063              

10875               S              -                            ‘Expert’ Table

AKQ103                            4                          West          North         East            South

                        72                                               -                 -                 2             pass

K85                                            2      (1)    pass           2              pass

KJ432                                         4NT   (3)    pass           6    (4)      pass

865                                            7      (5)    all pass


Table A:     (1)  negative/waiting

(2)   RKCB. With excellent trump support and 5 tricks it is reasonable for West to take control; 3 is the alternative.

‘Expert’      (1)  negative/waiting.

 Table         (3)  Our expert also decided to use RKCB rather than a slower approach.

(4)   1 or 3 keycards and a void.

(5)   Easy game, this bridge.


The responses to RKCB to show a void are:


5NT                                   =    0 or 2 keycards with a useful void.

6 of a suit below trumps      =    1 or 3 keycards with a void in the suit mentioned.

6 of the trump suit               =    2 or 4 keycards with a void in a higher ranking suit.


Obviously responder has to use his common sense if he decides to show a void as it pushes the level to a small slam. If he has one or two keycards less than partner may reasonably expect then it’s probably best to use normal responses. Also, the void should be useful – a void in a suit that partner has bid is not usually useful, but a void in the opponents suit most definitely is.


And what happened? Everybody bid 6 and made 13 tricks.

The bottom lines: -

-         The void responses really are quite easy to remember, so use them with a suitable hand!


Dave’s Column     Here is this week’s Dave input involving the best play for the contract.


West                East                      You are West, playing in 4 after an uncontested auction.

AK103         QJ5                  North leads the Q which holds and continues with another ,

KJ872          A63                  how do you play the hand?

J82               KQ10        

3                  9842                                   

Dave’s Column answer                      Board 27 from Wednesday 1st 



Dealer:             86                                               West          North         East            South

West                Q95                                            1              pass           2              pass

Love all            9763                                           2              pass           4              all pass


The auction is uninteresting, with the East hand

AK103              N             QJ5                just about worth game. Onto the play.  

KJ872           W    E          A63                     

J82                    S              KQ10             “Think before you finesse in trumps. When the 

3                                        9842              trump suit there are several reasons why you    

                        9742                                     should not risk relinquishing the lead with a

104                                       losing trump finesse. One such situation is when            

A54                                      you are in danger of losing trump control.   



North leads the Q and continues with a 2nd which you ruff. Suppose you think about “Eight ever, nine never”. You cross to the A and finesse the J which loses. North plays another and you have to ruff with your penultimate trump. When you draw the last trump and knock out the A the defence will cash a trick. You will not fare any better if you knock out the A first – South will then force your master trump with a , promoting North’s 9.

What went wrong? After taking one ruff you had 4 trumps left and one of the defenders was bound to hold at least 3 trumps. You could not therefore afford the defenders to gain the lead twice more, once in trumps and once in ’s, to continue forcing you in ’s.

The winning play, after ruffing the 2nd round of ’s was to cash the ace and king of trumps. As long as the trumps break 3-2 you are safe. You then knock out the A (leaving a defender with the outstanding Q) but the defenders make only the first trick, the A and a trump.

And what happened at the Pattaya bridge club? The board was played 3 times; 4+1, 4= and 2+1.

The bottom line: -

-         Don’t take a trump finesse if it means that you will lose control if it fails.

-         I was asked how anybody could make 4+1. I’m not saying that it’s correct play, but look at the effect of West leading the J when he gets in!




Another play problem


North               South                   You are North playing in 6 on a lead. You ruff in dummy

75                 KJ9                  and draw the trump. How do tackle the suit?

1042             -                       You need just one discard to throw the losing ; so should

AJ98532       KQ1064           you finesse; go up with the A and play the ruffing finesse

3                  AQJ86             by playing the Q; or is there a better line altogether?


Answer next page
Set up the long suit                                              Board 8 from Friday 31st               


I did not play this board, but I was asked to write it up as it seems that everybody had problems with the play.


Dealer:             75                                               West          North         East            South

West                1042                                           pass           2    (1)      2    (2)      5

Love all            AJ98532                                     5              6    (3)      dbl             all pass


(1)  3 seems clear to me,

10832                N             AQ64             (2)  I do normally advocate overcalling a 5-card

KJ763           W    E          AQ985                 major rather than doubling; but with a void

7                       S              -                            and playable in the other 3 suits I would double.

K104                                 9752              (3)  Presumably North now found his 7th ?



KQ1064                               Anyway, onto the play. East leads the A which

AQJ85                                 you ruff and you draw the trump.


How do you tackle the ’s? With oodles of entries into the South hand you should neither finesse nor play the A followed by the Q. The correct play is play the A at trick 3 and then ruff a low . Over to the South hand with a ruff and ruff another . As it happens the K falls on the 3rd round and so 13 tricks are cold. Had one opponent held Kxxx then you will be held to 12 tricks but as the cards lie 13 tricks are always there on a lead.

And what happened at the Pattaya bridge club? Everybody took the finesse and all deservedly went one down.

The bottom line: -

-         With a long suit – set it up rather than taking an unnecessary finesse.


The power of the good 4-4 fit                              Board 7 from Friday 31st               


Dealer:             862                                             West          North         East            South

South               KQ92                                         -                 -                 -                 pass   (1)

Love all            853                                             1             pass           1              2      (2)

                        962                                            2      (3)    pass           4              pass

4NT           pass           5     (4)    pass

AQ103              N             KJ97                    6              all pass

5                    W    E          A1076                 

K                       S              A62                (1)  2 looks automatic to me. If not playing a

KQJ8743                           105                     weak 2 I would open 3 – this is the ultimate

                        54                                               pre-empt suit – lots of body.

J843                                     (2)  South belatedly realized he had a great suit.

QJ10974                               (3)  A reverse, so strong and forcing.

A                                          (4)  0 or 3 keycards.


All quite simple really. The board was played 4 times and two pairs found the slam. One West decided to shun the 4-4 major suit fit and played in the lesser scoring 6. The last E-W played in a silly 3NT to score a bottom.

Too high                                                    Board 14 from Monday 27th


All but one E-W pair got too high on this deal – I did not (I passed throughout with the West hand!).


Dealer:             K                                                West(C)     North         East            South

South               AJ864                                        -                 -                 -                 2  (1)

E-W vul           KJ6                                             pass           pass           dbl   (2)      pass

                        10754                                        pass   (3)    pass


J9876                N             A                    (1)  At favourable vulnerability I expect that most

102               W    E          KQ53                   will open a weak 2. But this deal illustrates

9852                 S              A43                      the need for good intermediates in a pre-empt

J3                                       AK986                 suit.

                        Q105432                              (2)  Looks automatic to me.

97                                         (3)  Now I don’t know the bidding at other tables

Q107                                          but what did you bid with this West hand C in

Q2                                             this week’s quiz? You are vulnerable and they

not, but game is remote and I passed.


And what happened? 2 doubled went two down and the 300 was a top to E-W. Two East’s overbid to 3NT (-1) and one West somehow ended in 3 (-1).

The bottom lines: -

-         Even at unfavourable vulnerability it’s sometimes best to go for the penalty rather than a hopeless game.

-         With J9876 in an opponent’s suit think about a penalty rather than bidding NoTrumps.



Bidding Quiz Answers


Hand A:    Pass. The hand is not strong enough for 1NT and totally the wrong shape for a take-out double. If you double here you are very likely going for 800 as you force partner to bid at the two level even if he is bust.

Hand B:    (a)  Redouble. This is the classic redouble – shortage in partner’s suit, 4 cards in the other major and able to double (for penalties) anything the opponents bid.

(b)  2. 2NT is wrong as that denies 4 ’s and 2 is wrong as that promises a 5-card suit.

Hand C:    Pass. There is little prospect of game and you have two solid tricks – so take the non-vulnerable penalty. On a good day (it was) it will be 300 for a top. If partner has a huge hand and you happen to have game your way then you will get an enormous penalty.

Hand D:    Pass, this is forcing. Leave it up to partner if he wants to double 2 for penalties. 3 is a very poor alternative.


Bidding Sequences Answers    



E      1      dbl     redbl  2      The pass is 100% forcing, it simply means that opener does not

pass                                 have good enough ’s to double 2 himself. Having redoubled, the opening side should either play the contract themselves or double the opponents.