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Bridge Practice 'Hand of the Day'

Counting opponents discards in the diamond suit helps in making this contract

How important is it to count the oppositions cards as they play them


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Bidding

Partner opens a minor and you have an opening hand you should instantly think about slam - respond with 1S and partner rebids 1NT (telling you they have 12-14 HCP). You bid your other major asking partner to show you suit preference. They return you to spades and so you can choose to just bid game OR Ace ask.

Ace ask by bidding 4NT partner replies 5D showing you 1 Ace - you king ask as you have a void which can sometimes take the place of an Ace. Partner replies 6D showing 1 King you bid 6S

Acol Bidding

Partner opens 1NT and you have an opening hand. Jump the bidding to 3 forcing to game and showing 5 spades (remember 2S is a 'partner you must stop bidding' response) Partner bids game in spades and so you can choose Pass OR to Ace ask looking to see if slam can be made.
Ace ask by bidding 4NT partner replies 5D showing you 1 Ace - you king ask as you have a void which can sometimes take the place of an Ace. Partner replies 6D showing 1 King you bid 6S

Plan Before You Play

Dummy goes down, count your losers. 1 spade, and no others, this hand is looking good. The key to making this contract is making sure your small diamonds and hearts are also winners, for this to happen you will need to count the hearts and diamonds the opposition play to be certain whicH of these small cards have been promoted into winning cards.

The Play

Ruff the club lead and lead trumps, after losing to the Ace be sure to ruff the club return. Draw another round of trumps, and you will now know that only the 6S is outstanding.... should you draw it (using 2 trumps to draw out one from the opposition?) or leave yourself some options to overruff in either hand? With so many winners in your side suits you normally would draw the last trumps in the hope that the diamonds will develop into winners. Making 4 heart tricks and 4 diamond tricks.

Comment

Making 12 tricks. Most players will be in part-game or game. Advanced players may bid and get into the slam even without enough points.

The above commentary is intended as a guideline only. As with any Bridge hand there are many ways to bid and play any hand.

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