Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Jennbridge: Leap of Faith

I picked up this wonderful collection this afternoon at the club:

S   Axxxx
H  AKxxx
D  none
C  AKx

My partner, Erwin Linzner, and I were playing my version of Precision, a big club system.  I dealt and opened it 1 Club, which shows at least 16 points when the hand is unbalanced.  Erwin responded 1 Diamond, which shows any hand with less than 8 points.  I only had 4 losers, but with no established fit there was no sure route to game opposite a weak hand, so I contented myself with a rebid of 1 Spade, which was not forcing.  Erwin surprised me with a rebid of 2 Hearts.  Now my hand became huge.  His rebid promised at least 5 hearts, probably less than 3 spades and a decent hand, probably 5-7 points.

I thought about how the hand would play in hearts.  The only possible losers were a spade and a club.  He could, if necessary, ruff out all of my spades.  If he started with a doubleton, the long spades should set up and provide a discard for a club loser if he had one.  With at least 5 hearts and a doubleton spade, he was unlikely to hold as many as 4 clubs since the opponents would have at least 11 diamonds and neither opponent could bid them.  If he started with a singleton or void in spades, I could envision 12 tricks on a cross-ruff: 5 hearts in my hand, 2 clubs, the ace of spades and 4 ruffs in his hand or the fifth spade setting up.  All things considered, it seemed as if 6 Hearts should have a good chance, so I just bid it.

Erwin had a suitable hand:

S  xx
H Qxxxx
D  Kxxx
C  xx

The play was routine.  Erwin drew trumps in 2 rounds, played ace and a spade.  When both followed, he claimed, saying he would ruff out the spades and his club loser and set up the fifth spade for his 12th trick.

The hand was played 9 times and nobody else bid the slam.  One pair ended in 1 Spade, 2 didn't even get to game and played in a heart partial, and the rest bid 4 or 5 Hearts.

Good luck!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Jennbridge: Losing Trick Count now in Japanese

Losing Trick Count, Vol. II is now available in Japanese!

It was translated by a lovely woman who plays bridge and does translation work and travels between Japan and her home in New York--Yoshiko Nishimura Prager.

Losing Trick Count, Vol. II contains the six Bridge Bulletin articles on the subject, including how to use losing trick count in notrump auctions.  I explain how to use it effectively in Stayman and transfer auctions.

Additional material includes how to use losing trick count with Bergen raises, two-club opening bids and Drury, among other things.To order your copy (in English), click on the PayPal button on this site.  For questions, and for information on ordering the booklet in Japanese, e-mail me at

Hope you're having a great summer!

See you at the table!