Bridge: Declarer makes creative play

We are finally ready for the ACBL Summer Nationals in Toronto and a number of Pairs from Bermuda will be travelling to the event, which will take place at the Metro Convention Centre between July 20 and 30.

Along with the group will be the youngsters who are participating in the youth bridge programme in Bermuda — they should have fun but this will be a trial by fire for a lot of them at this early stage of their bridge learning.

Learn they will, and as long as they enjoy the event, get a feel for competitive bridge, and come back knowing more than when they left, the project will be a success.

Alongside the Nationals the ACBL has just announced an innovative new event that allows online participation in an Individual format. Here is the announcement from the ACBL.

“Here’s your chance to win a NABC title without leaving home.

“The new NABC Online Individual event allows you to do just that! Play Sunday, July 23, through Wednesday, July 26, any time of day from any location. All you need is an internet connection. Registration begins July 9.”

ACBL chief executive officer Robert Hartman calls the event an exciting, bold experiment. “Recognising that online bridge competition is a key part of the future of our game, the ACBL and BBO are collaborating to stage a four-session game. This event will enable ACBL members all over the world to attend the NABC via their laptop or mobile device.”

• Registration opens July 9 and closes on July 23 at 8pm (EST)

• Pre-registration is required for this event.

• Registration is limited to ACBL members in good standing.

Non-members and ACBL members whose membership has lapsed that would like to play in the event must complete the join/renew process by Friday, July 21, 3pm (15:00) Eastern Daylight Time

• Entry Fees

• If preregistered by July 19, fee is $40.

• If you are registering between July 20 and July 23, fee is $50.

• Participants may pay using a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express) or PayPal at the time of entry.

This is a neat innovation and should be a lot of fun!

Today’s hand is an interesting one in that the Defence was certainly reasonable but Declarer was given a chance to make a creative play in order to land his contract — and he took it!

Dealer West N/S Vul


S 109732

H K643

D A2

C J3


S 65


D 98754

C 109852



H 875

D K3




H QJ1092

D QJ106

C Q74

The Bidding: West North East South 1H Pass Pass 1S Pass 2H Pass 4S

North’s 2 Heart bid showed a good raise in Spades and South was happy to accept the invitation.

West led the Heart Queen which, based on the opening bid and East’s pass left East with the singleton Ace of Hearts, and no other points, as with 5 points she would take a bid.

Declarer played low from Dummy and East won the Ace and now had to find an entry to the West hand for the Heart ruff.

Based on the bidding partner was more likely to have the Club Ace than the Spade Ace so East, quite reasonably, switched to a Club.

Declarer won this and stopped to think ... clearly a Heart ruff was looming and then a further Heart loser would see the contract fail, so Declarer did some preparation. Instead of immediately playing a Spade, Declarer played the Ace-King of Diamonds, cashed the Club King and ruffed a Club with the Spade 10 to get to this position:


S 9732

H K64




S 65



C 98



H 87





H J1092

D QJ10


Having done the preparatory work Declarer now called for a Spade, won by West.

West played the Heart Jack, covered by the King and ruffed by East, but now East had only minor suit cards left and had to give declarer a ruff and discard allowing the Heart loser to go away. Pretty play!