Monday, September 11, 2006

Nice hand from Warschau

A few days ago, we planned a training match to prepare for the upcoming competition season, which starts in 2 weeks. We decided to play some hands from Warschau, since these hands have some potential, a minimax score,... so it's quite easy to make an analyse afterwards. Here's one where we ended up in the wrong contract, but where we could recover after a poor lead (for opponents that is):

AKT
A52
KJ92
QT2

2
KQJT764
A75
J3

NV vs V, E dealer, the bidding went quick:
pass - 4 - pass - 6
all pass

It's clear opponents can easily defeat this playing A and K, but LHO starts with a trump. So far so good, we can discard a on the AK, but we still need to find how are really divided and where the Q is. We'll need some entries in dummy in case we have AK on our right, so I take in my hand, play off AK discarding a small and play a to my J. RHO starts thinking and plays the Ace. It's clear LHO will have K now, otherwise there was no need to think.
I get a back which I ruff high, just in case we need 5 as an entry, draw the last trump with high cards and play Q to confirm LHO has the K. Indeed, RHO very quickly plays small so we ruff, and start off playing the rest of the s. Opponents don't discard any s, so there's no real way to see the situation. On the last trump, here's what's left:
KJ9
T

4
A75
LHO discards a so I can easily discard the T in dummy.

Now we have to decide how to play . There are 3 possibilities:
able to cash our top honours
- RHO has QTx and there's nothing we can do
- LHO was squeezed with the Qxx and the , in which we can just cash our top honours. A simple finesse would've worked as well.
- LHO was squeezed with Txx and the , in which case we need to play the K followed by running the J (pinning that T).

I don't think there's any way to tell which line will work best. Percentages will probably tell to just cash and hope. The fact was that the most beautiful situation had occured: LHO had Txx, so we had a guard (or showup?) squeeze!

Here's the full hand:

Dealer:East
Vul:EW
Scoring:imps
AKT
A52
KJ92
QT2
Q765
98
T83
K976
J9843
3
Q64
A854
2
KQJT764
A75
J3

The contract is always laydown after the lead, whatever RHO does in at trick 4.

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