None vulnerable

None vulnerable

Facing higher pre-empts revisited

Play Bridge: Tips and tricks for bridge players new to experienced.

The bidding: South, with eight trump and less than 10 points, opens four spades. North has four cover cards which are the aces, the kings and the queen of trump. When partner pre-empts, aces and kings and the queen of trump are the helpful cards. The assumption is that queens of side-suits are not useful opposite short holdings such as doubletons, singletons or voids which the pre-empter is likely to have.

At equal vulnerability, partner’s bid is off two, so with four cover cards, the pre-empt can be raised two levels. Therefore, the partnership is in the ballpark of slam. Just to make sure they are not off two keycards (the aces and king of trump), North uses Roman keycard Blackwood to find partner with two keycards without the queen of trump. Six should be a safe bid.

The contract: Six spades by South

The opening lead: King of hearts

The king of diamonds is only slightly better than the king of hearts. When everything is equal, I lead the unbid major.

The play: South will win the ace of hearts and then draw trump, pitch his losers on clubs and claim.

The result: Six spades by South making plus one for +1010.

Note:

Question: What do you call an eight card suit?

Answer: Trump!

Do you have a question or a hand of note that occurred at your bridge table? If yes, send it to me at warren.t.watson@gmail.com and I will answer it.

To see the columns published in the Times, go to http://watsongallery.ca/bridge/column.htm.