Page 0013

John gets

DIRECTOR, PLEASE!

the laws right

twice in a row

‘I’VE been reading about South African points but my hand is too good for 4™ and

Texas openings to show a solid major: 4® in any event I have eight clear-cut tricks.’

to show hearts and 4t to show spades. Do ‘For once John is in the right,’ said the Mike Swanson

you think we should play them?’ asked Director. ‘An artificial strong opening must

John hopefully. comply with any one of three requirements:

‘I think it would be dangerous for us to it must have at least 16 high-card points, or

open at the four level with suits that we the total of its high-card points plus the John announced Julie’s 1NT as ‘Twelve to

haven’t got. One of us just might forget,’ total number of cards in its two longest suits fourteen’ and Julie announced John’s 2®

replied Julie scathingly. must come to at least 25, or it must have as ‘Stayman.’

enough high-card points to open at the one West not unreasonably led the ten of

level and have eight clear-cut tricks assum- spades, but unfortunately a spade lead was

Love All. Dealer South. ing anything other than the worst trump the only one that enabled John to make his

´ Q4 break. Here only a 5-0 trump break would contract when he ducked in dummy and

™ 8 prevent John from making eight tricks. won with his queen of spades.

t K72 ‘A natural two-level opening can be open- ‘I’ve got you this time!’ exclaimed West

® 8765432 ed on whatever you wish but it must be to John as he waved his arm in the air to

´ AK97 ´ J 10 8 3 2 described properly, so you can’t describe call the Director.

N

™ 10 9 2 W E

™ 4 partner’s natural 2™ as strong unless you When the Director arrived at the table,

t J 10 9 S t AQ843 have agreed it meets one or more of the West made his case: ‘Julie announced

® KQJ ® A9 criteria above, which it does.’ John’s bid as Stayman but all he had was a

´ 65 ‘But we can make 6´,’ pleaded West. weakness take-out into clubs. That’s illegal,

™ AKQJ7653 ‘Well you should have bid it, then,’ replied isn’t it?’

t 65 the Director unsympathetically. ‘And any- ‘Not at all,’ replied the Director.

® 10 way you can only make 5´ as two rounds of ‘Stayman is merely an initial enquiry

hearts ensure that Julie makes a spade trick.’ about four-card majors, but it doesn’t

Silence fell upon the table as they all guarantee a particular hand. It certainly

West North East South took out their cards from the next board: doesn’t guarantee a four-card major for

Julie John the majority of players.’

2™ ‘But we can make 4´. Surely at least

Pass 2NT Pass 4™ N/S Game. Dealer West. Julie should announce it as non-

All Pass ´ A8 promissory Stayman.’

™ J832 ‘Just like on the last hand, there was

Julie announced John’s 2™ as ‘Strong and t Q943 nothing to stop you bidding, and if you

forcing,’ and John alerted Julie’s negative ® AK2 want to know if Stayman promises a

2NT response. John’s jump to 4™ showed ´ K 10 9 7 6 ´ J432 major you can always ask (or even consult

N

a solid suit and that ended the auction. ™ A97 W E ™ K 10 5 4 the opponents’ convention card).’

The play of the hand didn’t take long; t K 10 8 5 S t AJ7 After the opponents had left the table,

John emerged with just his eight heart ® 10 ® J7 Julie smiled and said to John: ‘Well, that

tricks, at which point West called for the ´ Q5 must be a first! Two calls for the Tourna-

Director. ™ Q6 ment Director complaining about you,

‘What’s wrong, I didn’t revoke did I?’ t 62 and you were in the right both times. I

said John worriedly. ® Q986543 couldn’t believe it! Tell you what, if you are

‘No, it’s not that, it’s the fact that Julie still not in the wrong the next time the

described your hand as strong, which it Director is called, we must go out and

certainly isn’t,’ replied West irately. West North East South celebrate.’

When the Director arrived, West turned Julie John John suddenly felt the weight of the

to him and said, ‘John has made an illegal Pass 1NT Pass 2® world on his shoulders as he certainly had

opening bid.’ Pass 2™ Pass 3® never been right twice in a row before,

‘No, I haven’t. I might only have ten All Pass never mind three times! r

www.ebu.co.uk August 2010 English Bridge 13

Index

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