Thursday, February 9, 2012

Back to the basics

Just when I thought I was getting better, I start making elementary mistakes.

On this hand, for example, I lost count of a critical side-suit: (click on lakshmanok to hide the other hands and click Next if you want to see my terrible line of play).

After the lead of an interdeterminate club (it's not clear whether it's a doubleton or an interior sequence), there are several ways to make the contract with an overtrick. The simplest is to do as I did, but to realize on the first round of diamonds that they are split no worse than 3-1 and shorten east's trumps by making him ruff. Then, he's end played into leading into dummy's hearts.  At the table, however, I forgot that dummy had 4 diamonds to start, and proceeded to go 3 down!

At the club yesterday, I mis-signaled on trick 1 on this hand (click on South to hide the other hands and click Next to see the play):

Partner and I have the agreement that on the of the King, one encourages only if one holds either the Ace or the Jack (not with a doubleton).  I realized almost as soon as my deuce hit the table, but heaved a sigh of relief when declarer took the trick with her Ace. A Bath coup had been avoided, but sure enough, in the middle of the play, partner made what he thought was a safe lead -- low to my "marked" Jack. I didn't have the card I'd promised and this let the contract make.

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