Page 0016

Basic Cardplay by Paul Bowyer

The ‘Tight Fist’ Syndrome

THERE ARE various pitfalls in trump con- If you now ruff a diamond to hand with The hand is secure if declarer ruffs his two

tracts that can trap the unwary. Perhaps the seven of spades West overruffs with hearts with the eight of spades and the

one of the most common is the ‘tight fist’ the nine! One down. Is it unlucky that the nine of spades as East will not be able to

syndrome when ruffing. We’ll start with an diamonds break 5–1 and that West has the overruff.

easy example where brilliance in bidding nine of spades? No, it’s just bad play. You

may be eclipsed by a lapse in card-play. As can afford to ruff that diamond with a HHHHHH

South you do well to reach a grand slam in high trump (the ace of spades for choice –

spades and West leads the two of diamonds: if you’ve got it, flaunt it) and then draw This deal follows similar lines but is more

trumps. Why ruff low? The only reason subtle (we’ll show all four hands for a

can be that you are too tight-fisted to change). West leads the king of spades

Deal 1 ‘waste’ a top trump on the menial task of against your contract of 4™. How should

South plays in 7´. ruffing a low card. From the days of whist you play?

West leads the t2. comes an appropriate aphorism: ‘Don’t

´ 863 send a boy on a man’s errand.’

™ 8 The same principle of ruffing high when Deal 3

t AJ8764 you can afford to do so applies to ruffs in South plays in 4™.

® AKQ the dummy: West leads the ´K.

´ 874

N ™ A73

W E

S Deal 2 t Q9853

South plays in 4´. ® 10 6

´ A K Q J 10 7 West leads the ®A. ´ KQJ9 ´ 10 6 3 2

N

™ A52 ´ 982 ™ 82 W E

™ 654

t 3 ™ A5 t K6 S t A J 10 4

® 732 t J8632 ® J9842 ® Q3

® 975 ´ A5

™ K Q J 10 9

Count – Plan – Execute. There are eleven W

N

E

t 72

top tricks so, as declarer, you realise that S ® AK75

you have to ruff the two heart losers on

the table. So . . . win the ace of diamonds, ´ A K Q J 10 6

play off the ace of hearts, ruff a heart, cross ™ K732 As declarer you spot three obvious losers

to hand with a trump, ruff a heart. We are t Void in spades and diamonds, so you should be

down to: ® J84 able to see that you have to ruff your

losing clubs in the dummy. Accordingly,

after winning the spade lead with the ace

´ — The defenders lead three rounds of clubs of spades, you should cash the top clubs

™ — and try to cash the ace of diamonds, ruffed and ruff one in the dummy – but with

t J8764 in the South hand. Now, plan the play which trump? As you are intending to ruff

® AKQ from here. Count – Plan – Execute. The two clubs, you should ruff the first low

formula never varies. club with the seven of hearts and the

N You can see that you can ruff two heart second with the ace of hearts. If you

W E

S losers in the dummy, so should play off carelessly ruff the third round of clubs

the top hearts and lead another. Now, it is with the three of hearts, you will be over-

´ AKQJ7 sheer carelessness to ruff the third heart ruffed with the lowly heart four and suffer

™ — with the two of spades. If East is also out an embarrassing defeat.

t — of hearts he will overruff and the deal will In detail, then, win the ace of spades,

® 732 be transferred to the archives of the play off the ace and king of clubs, ruff a

Guinness Book of Butchered Contracts. club with the seven of hearts, play the

16 English Bridge August 2013 www.ebu.co.uk

Index

  1. Page 0001
  2. Page 0002
  3. Page 0003
  4. Page 0004
  5. Page 0005
  6. Page 0006
  7. Page 0007
  8. Page 0008
  9. Page 0009
  10. Page 0010
  11. Page 0011
  12. Page 0012
  13. Page 0013
  14. Page 0014
  15. Page 0015
  16. Page 0016
  17. Page 0017
  18. Page 0018
  19. Page 0019
  20. Page 0020
  21. Page 0021
  22. Page 0022
  23. Page 0023
  24. Page 0024
  25. Page 0025
  26. Page 0026
  27. Page 0027
  28. Page 0028
  29. Page 0029
  30. Page 0030
  31. Page 0031
  32. Page 0032
  33. Page 0033
  34. Page 0034
  35. Page 0035
  36. Page 0036
  37. Page 0037
  38. Page 0038
  39. Page 0039
  40. Page 0040
  41. Page 0041
  42. Page 0042
  43. Page 0043
  44. Page 0044
  45. Page 0045
  46. Page 0046
  47. Page 0047
  48. Page 0048
  49. Page 0049
  50. Page 0050
  51. Page 0051
  52. Page 0052
  53. Page 0053
  54. Page 0054
  55. Page 0055
  56. Page 0056
  57. Page 0057
  58. Page 0058
  59. Page 0059
  60. Page 0060
  61. Page 0061
  62. Page 0062
  63. Page 0063
  64. Page 0064
  65. Page 0065
  66. Page 0066
  67. Page 0067
  68. Page 0068
  69. Page 0069
  70. Page 0070
  71. Page 0071
  72. Page 0072
  73. Page 0073
  74. Page 0074