Bob Munson

Recap of 4/1/2013 IMP individual

We had plans to use BBO ‘create team match’ 7 times in order to get the correct (balanced/uniform/ACBL) individual movement.  When I had problems, I gave up and had a 7 round individual with random partners resulting in everyone partnering some more than once, some not at all.  Oh well, that is the current state of the art of BBO and probably will stay that way.   We had a record number (low) of double digit swings (1) with many pushes, but that doesn’t mean there were no interesting hands.

Starting out, board 1.  

Luckily, I won 5 IMPs but was slated to lose 13 (18 IMP differential!).  I think Mike forgot the bidding in the course of the play – playing the 5 preempt for holding Qxx and the NT overcall for a singleton.  If he gets hearts right and spades right, he is slated to bring home 5X for +650 to go with his teammates +120.  My table started the same 1  – 1NT.  That seems normal enough (I was North, the 1 bidder at the other table).  But it went all pass.  After the heart lead, we cashed our 5 hearts but failed to score any aces after partner switched to a club and declarer, smartly saving 8 clubs in dummy, took the rest.  If clubs are not running, declarer might possibly have discarded some clubs on the run of the hearts.  On the last heart, I discouraged in spades. We not only have to get a diamond shift to my ace, but I must shift to a spade to defeat 1NT.  Small consolation for a heart game that we could have made, but…

Board 2 provided a push in 4 -1, but 2 very different auctions.

All Pass

Obviously a small heart to the J allows the 4 to come home, and that only pays off to a doubleton Q with West followed by a spade ruff with the last trump by East.  I didn’t find the low heart play and neither did Mike.  If one of us got it right, win 12 IMPs.  We also had huge chances in the auction to not face the declarer play problem in 4.  I could have (and should have) passed Jack’s 3NT (where the small heart to the J has no risk, big reward) and Mike could have passed 4X to score a plus and not worry about declarer play.

Board 7 presented me with a 12 IMP opportunity.

The auction began the same in both rooms, but my RHO (Bill) rebid hearts and was raised to game, where the other table (Jack) rebid the 6 card spade suit and was raised to game.  The better contract (at least as these cards were dealt) is the 6-2 fit.  Jack played it well and scored +620.  Against 4, I failed to play diamonds at trick 1 (always goes down) and failed to play diamonds later upon winning the A.  I think I was afraid of setting up diamonds for a spade discard and didn’t want to break diamonds, but that was not right on this hand and probably not right in general.

Board 12 saw the same auction at both tables with the same opening lead.

Slated for down 2, I was delighted when we only went down 1.  Returning the 8 at trick 2 would seem to ask for the heart return.  That provides a second ruff along with the K for down 2.  But instead of leading the 8, the 2 was returned, Jack ruffed and returned a trump, allowing us to escape for down 1 and lose 12 IMPs.  The 10 lead was ducked in the other room.  Declarer drew trump and lost the 3 obvious tricks.

Board 17 I put up one of the sorriest defenses on record.  And, I didn’t play a wrong card until trick 5!

The trump lead helped not give anything away and reduced the chance of a spade ruff by declarer.  After cashing top clubs, declarer needs to then play the Q (to hold it to down 1), but when Mark led the 3, I ducked, pard won the J and returned a spade.  How hard can it be to cash two more spade tricks?  Down 2.  +300.  It was too hard for me.  I shifted to a heart and both of dummy’s spade losers went away on red kings to score -180.   Back to the bidding, it seems standard after a penalty double of 1NT (or an overcalled 1NT) to use XX as a relay to 2.  Our teammates used 2 as a transfer to 3 and when they ‘made 2’ also, they were -50 to go with my -180 to lose 6 IMPs.  Declarer did score a spade ruff with the A that was key to holding the losses to -1.

The last hand of the day was very well judged by Mike and Bruce.

But all to no avail.  Why?  BBO timed out the round, so it was only played at our table, an enforced ‘push’ scored at the other table.  But it was still a cool hand.  I opened 1 and over the double, Jack raised to 2.   I bounced to 4  both as a blocking bid and a possible make.  Mike had  a comfortable double of that (able to pull 5  to 5♦ or, provide some defense if pard decides to defend).  Bruce made the well judged bid of 4 and made 5.  If I bid 5♥ over Bruce’s 4, would Mike bid 5?  And then would I bid 6?  I doubt it.  What are the initial merits of Jack’s 2 vs. pass or 3?  He doesn’t have much shape, much offense or much defense!  But, he might have persuaded me to keep bidding rather than defending had he bounced to 3?

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