Monday, May 21, 2018

LTC at Work at the Club

By Bob Klein

Here is a hand I held recently at the local bridge club. My partner opened 1, RHO overcalled 2 and I held:

A 8 2
K 9 7 5 3
3
K Q 5 3

The first item of business was to count my losers.  With 5 hearts to the king, there couldn't be more than 1 loser, so the hand counted to 5 losers.  So I immediately thought of slam, since opener normally has 7 losers.  Using the LTC formula, 7+5=12 losers, which should produce 12 tricks.  I had first or second round control of every other suit.  RHO figured to have most if not all of the opposing strength, and I had a singleton in his suit. If it came down to a spade finesse, it figured to work.

I thought about a splinter bid of 4 Diamonds, but then decided that partner could easily have enough for slam and not have enough to accept a slam try.  So I just took the simple approach and bid 4NT, RKC for hearts.  Pard showed 2 with the queen of hearts, so I closed it out at 6 . The lead was the A, followed by a heart shift. Here were both hands:

A 8 2
K 9 7 5 3
3
K Q 5 3
N
WE
S
Q J
A Q 10 8 4
Q 6 5
A 7 4

Partner drew trump, tested the clubs, and when they didn't split, took the spade finesse, which, as expected, won. Plus 980 was a tie for top as most pairs didn't bid slam. A proper evaluation of my hand, using losing trick count principles, propelled us to the excellent 27-point slam.


East Deals
None Vul
10 7 6 3
6 2
9 4 2
J 10 9 8
A 8 2
K 9 7 5 3
3
K Q 5 3
N
WE
S
Q J
A Q 10 8 4
Q 6 5
A 7 4
K 9 5 4
J
A K J 10 8 7

♣ 62

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