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Beyond the theory (Le Bridgeur Magazine No.906)

Article written by Jérôme Rombaut and published in the French magazine Le Bridgeur No.906 (November/December 2016)

In many cases, when it comes to handling card combinations, there is a technical card, higher than the others, to play. But what about the deal context?

One of the most successful game modes of Funbridge is the tournament of the day. The world is divided into 4 time zones with two tournaments per zone, one with MP scoring and the other one with IMP scoring. Over 3,000 players take part in the MP tournament for Europe every day. And you have 24 hours to play the 20 deals of the tournament.

Here is a deal from a MP tournament for the Europe zone. You are South:

S A Q 9 6 4 2 
H Q J 4
D 5
C A 8 4

The bidding proceeds as follows:

South N

 
Here  shows an invitational hand with 4 trumps.

S J 7 5 3
H 3
D A 9 8 4 2
C K 6 5
S A Q 9 6 4 2
H Q J 4
D 5
C A 8 4

 
You receive the lead of the diamond King and my question is simply this: how are you going to handle trumps?

Don’t forget that in MP tournaments, the aim is always to take as many tricks as possible. Theoretically, handling trumps implies that you start with the spade Jack to catch K10x in East. On this deal, you will combine ruffing out a diamond and handling trumps. To establish Diamonds, you must find the suit split 4-3 and therefore four entries to dummy: three to ruff your Diamonds and another one to take advantage of the last Diamond established. In dummy thanks to the diamond Ace, if you play the spade Jack, you will have only three entries: the club King and only two trumps because you will necessarily have to draw a second round of trumps to eliminate the last one.

You should rather start with a small Spade to the Queen. If trumps split 2-1 and the spade King is bare and onside or bare or second and located in the next hand, you will then be able to get over to the spade Jack (getting rid of the last trump) and start establishing Diamonds. You will have your four entries: the club King and three in Spades (the Jack and two heart ruffs).

The spade Jack, which is the technical card, was the only card preventing you from taking 11 tricks!

Please note that with the bare King onside, you take 12 tricks.

This was the full deal:

S J 7 5 3
H 3
D A 9 8 4 2
C K 6 5
S K 10
H A 8 7 6 5
D K Q 7 3
C 9 7
S 8
H K 10 9 2
D J 10 6
C Q J 10 3 2
S A Q 9 6 4 2
H Q J 4
D 5
C A 8 4

 

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[…] Beyond the theory: “In many cases, when it comes to handling card combinations, there is a technical card, higher than the others, to play. But what about the deal context?” Read article […]

Greta Grove-White
Greta Grove-White

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