Playing IMPs, I run across a bread and butter hand, yet the
clear-cut defense gained 5 IMPs. In third chair with none
vulnerable, I pick up
A3 A64 J10875 AKQ
Not bad, just a tad too strong for a 1NT opening,
but RHO opens 1 in front of me. We play
1NT overcalls as 15-18, so that seems fine. I don't
like my heart holding, but overcalling 2 doesn't
look very attractive, either. The auction continues
2 on my left, 2 by partner, two passes,
and 3 on my left. Two more passes to me. If
this were matchpoints, I'd double. It looks like I have
five tricks in hand and partner bid. He might not have
very much, but at least they won't have a source of
tricks in spades. At IMPs, however, I'll be a wimp and
just play it here.
The opening lead is obvious. I lead a small trump. I
don't want to lead a club, because if it draws declarer's
singleton, it may allow a quick entry to hand to cross-ruff.
Dummy hits with
Looking at that dummy, I'm very glad I led a trump. Declarer
wins and plays a club; partner shows an even number. Of course,
I win and play the trump ace and another. Declarer plays another
club (and follows), and I win, and of course, knock out dummy's
A. Declarer (persistent cuss!) continues with a third
round of clubs. Partner pitches an unreadable spade, but this
partner always plays middle cards if he has any. It's pretty
clear, however, to exit with a diamond. Declarer wins his KQ
and eventually has to lead from his Kx for down two.
This picks up 5 IMPs vs. 2 making at the other table.
Perhaps I ought to have doubled after all.
The contract was always down off the top, but the trump
lead set it two. Note that a club lead, even though declarer
has three of them, costs a trick. The defense needs all three
tempi it gets from winning clubs in order to do everything.
That seems pretty unusual to me.
Copyright © 2010 Jeff Goldsmith