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!

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