Page 0010

10 English Bridge April 2016 www.ebu.co.uk

'Did you see the note that I left in your pigeon-hole,

Headmaster?' enquired the Matron, settling herself

into the North chair.

'Remind me what it was about,' the Headmaster

replied.

The Matron shook her head disapprovingly.

'Surely you must remember,' she continued. 'I

regard it as a very serious matter.'

The Headmaster waited patiently to hear more.

Was this the time to bring up some mundane topic?

Playing the next board would make more sense.

'The vegetables in the dining hall have been

seriously overcooked recently,' declared the Matron.

'According to Children's Healthcare Weekly, this

completely destroys the vitamin content.'

'Ah yes, I remember now,' replied the Headmaster.

Would her note still be in his wastepaper basket?

Perhaps he had better retrieve it and read beyond

the first few lines.

This was the deal before them:

West North East South

Rev The Head- Stefan

Benson Matron Master Götel

1t Pass 1™

Pass 2™ Pass 4NT

Pass 5™ Pass 5NT

Pass 6™ Pass 7™

All Pass

The Matron was not an admirer of Roman Keycard

Blackwood, regarding it as unnecessarily

complicated. Stefan Götel used traditional

Blackwood to locate two aces and two kings and

then bid 7™. If the ™K happened to be missing, he

would have to take a trump finesse.

The Reverend Benson led the tQ and Götel won

with dummy's ace, the Headmaster playing an

encouraging t8. It was an excellent contract. If

clubs were no worse than 4-2, he could ruff a club

in the dummy even if the trumps were 4-0. What if

the clubs were 5-1?

The German master soon spotted the solution.

Why were dummy reversals so hard to see? The

English had a phrase to describe it. They called it a

'blinding spot', for some reason. 'Low diamond,

please,' he said.

After ruffing the diamond in his hand, Götel

played the ace of trumps. The 4-0 break came to

light but this would not affect his plan in any way.

He crossed to dummy twice in spades to ruff two

more diamonds in his hand. After drawing trumps,

he was able to claim the contract. 'Dummy's spade

loser goes on my third club,' he said.

'It was a good one for Blackwood,' the Matron

declared. 'Without my two aces and two kings, a

slam would have been hopeless.'

'I had just enough entries to take all the diamond

ruffs and then draw the trumps,' Götel observed. 'If

I don't ruff a diamond at Trick 2, I go down.'

The Headmaster twitched in his seat. 'Surely that

means that you would have gone down on a spade

lead?' he said.

'Yes, yes,' Götel replied.

'Don't tell me now that I should have led a spade,'

the Reverend Benson exclaimed. 'You said you liked

my diamond lead. You gave me the eight.'

'It's a pity they didn't play the contract the other

way round,' the Headmaster replied. 'I would have

found the spade lead, I can assure you.'

A few rounds later, the Matron faced the masters'

top pair, Bertie Bellis and Percy Cutforth. 'Perhaps,

just for once, you could play normal bridge against

Stefan Götel's Raise by David Bird

Bridge Fiction

Bridge Fiction

click

link

Love All. Dealer North.

´ A K 7

™ K 10 9 6

t A 9 5 4

® 7 2

´ 8 5 4 2 ´ Q J 10 3

™ - ™ 7 5 4 3

t Q J 10 6 t K 8 7 3

® J 10 8 4 3 ® 6

´ 9 6

™ A Q J 8 2

t 2

® A K Q 9 5

N

W E

S

Index

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