Like all good tales of poor bridge this involves a trip to our infamous namesake, Durham City Bridge Club. Itís the time of year that we start to take improvers to the big world of *proper* card play and see the fruits of our teaching efforts put into action. So, I sat down opposite Chris and after a brief system discussion which apparently included checkback we picked up this deal, and had the following auction.
|Dlr N||A Q 8 7|
|Q J T 9 7|
|T 9 5 4 2||K 3|
|7 6||9 8 4 3|
|A 5 2||K 4|
|Q 8 3||J T 9 7 4|
|K Q T 5 2|
|8 6 3|
|K 6 5|
(1) A shape concealing I have 4 spades action
(2) Yes I know checkback but not here, and I still donít have 4 spades
So despite Chris failing at both opportunities to show his spade suit we end in the obliged 3NT which is where the shutters close and the lights go out.
East kicks off with the J and Chris surveys dummy, notices the good K and immediately hops up with it destroying dummyís only real entry. Not deterred Chris calls for a heart and plays the Jack from his hand magnificently blocking the suit and himself from dummy. After much head shaking he cashes the A and exits with the Q which East takes with the King.
East continues with the 10 and the defence are well on their way from cashing this off but West is clearly impressed with the declarer play at this table decided puts the 8 under the Ten blocking that suit nicely. Forced to win the A Chris continues with the J and West wins the Ace. West cashes the Q and East clearly excited just carries on with more clubs. So itís pointed out to him that his partner is still on lead and West, disappointed by his now lack of clubs takes stock. Unknown to everyone but Chris heís cunningly engineered an entry to dummy with the 8, so all spades go bye-bye and 10 tricks is chalked up for a complete undeserved 10 tricks top.
Isnít matchpoints great.