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DEC_08_EB_p06-07 Nuns 13/11/08 4:59 pm Page 7

The Mother of Discipline was uncon- East hand. Four clubs, two diamonds and trumps are good, Reverend Mother. I

vinced. ‘What about the other four days?’ six winners in the majors brought the total wasn’t sure how to bid it.’

she demanded. to twelve. The slam had been made. The Mother Superior smiled. ‘If I

‘Ah, yes, well, I did put on a few pounds ‘Well played, Reverend Mother,’ said manage to make thirteen tricks, it will be

on the other four days,’ Sister Myrtle Sister Grace. ‘If you begin with a diamond an even greater miracle than Sister Gretel’s

replied. ‘But, taking all the readings to the queen, you go down.’ sprouts,’ she replied. ‘Twelve tricks may be

together, I still finished about even – near ‘The play was obvious,’ grunted the possible, with a little help from above.’

enough.’ Mother of Discipline. After a few moments’ thought, the

This was the first board of the round: Sister Grace studied the travelling score- Mother Superior made the strange-

sheet. ‘I fear some of our lesser performers looking discard of a diamond from the

have found twelve tricks beyond them. dummy. She won the trick with the ace of

Game All. Dealer South. Two pairs went down in 6♦, too.’ hearts and led a trump, the king appearing

♠K4 ‘Foolish contract when the values are from a somewhat disgruntled Mother of

♥84 there for 6NT,’ observed the Mother of Discipline. ‘Is that the help you were

♦J542 Discipline. looking for?’ she said.

♣AQ752 As the players took their seats for the last The Mother Superior won with dummy’s

♠ 983 ♠ 10 7 5 2 round of the event, the smell of roast ace of trumps. The king of trumps had

♥ Q J 10 3 W



♥9652 turkey was drifting up from the kitchens surely started life as a singleton, in which

♦ K 10 8 7 S ♦6 one floor below. The Mother Superior, case East now held J-10-8 of trumps over

♣ 86 ♣ J 10 9 4 whose blue robe was as crisply laundered dummy’s Q-3. The only hope of making the

♠AQJ6 as ever, smiled benevolently. ‘A Christmas contract was an endplay in the trump suit.

♥AK7 lunch smells as wonderful as it tastes,’ she The Mother Superior cashed the two

♦AQ93 declared. ‘How lucky we all are.’ top clubs, ruffed a club in her hand and

♣K3 Her partner, the sour-faced Sister returned to dummy with the ace of

Thomas, leaned forward. ‘Sprouts don’t diamonds. Because she had discarded a

smell very pleasant, Reverend Mother,’ she diamond rather than a club on the first

West North East South observed. ‘Mind you, they taste fairly trick, she was then able to ruff another

Sister Sister Sister Mother of awful too.’ club in her hand. She returned to dummy

Myrtle Grace Benedict Discipline ‘I’m not sure that you have fully caught with a diamond and cashed two more

2♣ the spirit of the occasion,’ the Mother rounds of the suit, discarding hearts.

Pass 2♦ Pass 2NT Superior reprimanded. ‘The quality of These cards were still to be played:

Pass 6NT All Pass Sister Gretel’s vegetables is nothing short

of a miracle, when you bear in mind the

Sister Myrtle led the queen of hearts and poor soil that we have here.’ ♠ Q3

down went the dummy. ‘Is that not worth This board was before them: ♥ —

a positive response, Sister?’ she enquired. ♦ 9

‘Two Clubs, Three Clubs. That’s how we ♣ —

would have bid it.’ E/W Game. Dealer South. ♠ — ♠ J 10 8

Sister Grace could summon little ♠AQ3 ♥ Q J 10 W



♥ —

interest in the bidding methods of such a ♥ Void ♦ — S ♦ —

modest pair. ‘What a dull world it would ♦AKQJ93 ♣ — ♣ —

be if we all bid the same,’ she replied. ♣AK53 ♠ 96

The Mother of Discipline won the heart ♠ K ♠ J 10 8 7 ♥ 6

lead and noted that she had ten tricks on ♥ K Q J 10 9 8 7 4 N ♥2 ♦ —

top. There was no hurry to test the clubs; ♦ 8 W


E ♦ 10 7 5 2 ♣ —

indeed, there was every chance of establish- ♣ Q74 ♣ J 10 8 2

ing two extra tricks in the diamond suit. If ♠96542

diamonds were 3-2 or East held K-10-x-x, ♥A653 ‘Nine of diamonds, please, Sister,’ instructed

the contract would soon be hers. She ♦64 the Mother Superior.

played the ace of diamonds, drawing two ♣96 Sister Grace ruffed with the jack and

lowly spot cards, and continued with a low exited with the eight of trumps. Confident

diamond towards the dummy. Sister how the cards lay, the Mother Superior

Myrtle could not afford to rise with the West North East South played the nine of trumps from her hand.

king or declarer would have the three Mother of Sister Sister Mother West showed out and the slam was made.

diamond tricks that were needed. She Discipline Thomas Grace Superior ‘Lucky view in trumps, I must say,’ said

played low and dummy’s jack won the 2♣ Pass 2♦ the Mother of Discipline. ‘I might easily

trick, East showing out. 4♥ Pass Pass 4♠ have false-carded the king of trumps from

Adjusting the position of her thick- Pass 6♠ All Pass a doubleton.’

lensed spectacles, the Mother of Discipline ‘So you might,’ the Mother Superior

turned her attention to the club suit. West The Mother of Discipline led the king of replied. ‘And if you’d found such a

showed out on the third round but she hearts and Sister Thomas laid out her splendid defence, Reverend Mother, I’d be

could then concede a club trick to the safe dummy. ‘A grand slam is there if your happy to go one down!’ December 2008 English Bridge 7


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