East west vulnerable

East west vulnerable

Double over opponent’s no-trump

Tips and tricks for bridge players new to experienced.

When opponents compete over partner’s one notrump, we have already seen that a cuebid of the bid or of the implied suit is Stayman. In addition, any two-level bid is to play (no Stayman nor transfers) and any direct three-level bid is forcing to game showing a five-card suit.

Furthermore, as seen in this column, a double is for penalty.

The bidding: West, with a balanced 17 points, opens one notrump. North, in direct seat, doubles also showing a balanced hand of 15-17. South, with any values such as seven points and a good lead, would leave the double in for penalty. However, South is weak and has to bid two diamonds to play.

Rule of 22: A partnership needs 22 points to get seven tricks on average, which either makes one notrump or sets one notrump. South has too few points to leave the double in. By the way, it says “rule” but it is only a guideline.

The contract: Two diamonds by South

The opening lead: The ace of clubs

This is a fine lead because South is very weak and probably does not have the king. Leading an unsupported ace is usually bad because it could free right hand opponent’s (RHO) king but that is not the case here.

The play: Declarer ruffs the second club and takes a heart finesse. It wins and South cashes the ace of hearts. He ruffs a third club back to his hand and ruffs a heart. The fourth heart is now good.

He ruffs another club with the eight and takes a trump finesse capturing the queen. He is happy to take one honour and concedes the king.

Declarer plays a spade to the king which is the right play when a doubleton is involved. South loses a spade, a diamond and a club.

The result: Two diamonds by South making plus two for +130.


-Do you have a question or a hand of note that occurred at your bridge table? If yes, send it to me at wt.watson@yahoo.ca and I will answer it.

-Supervised duplicate will be starting a week today, every Tuesday evening at 7:00pm. Please email me for details.

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