Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Supporting - shape beats strength

Handling weak hands with somewhat attractive shape can be tricky. Frederic had this collection against a relatively weak Italian team.

T8x
Txxxx
QT8xx
-

All vul, partner opened 1S showing 5+ (11-15; denies 5332) and RHO overcalled 2C; would you pass or get a 2S-bid in the auction adhering to the 'raise on any excuse' principle?

Freddan raised to 2S and the bidding continued 3S by LHO, 4H (!) by partner and he passed. LHO went on to 5C which came around to you. What would you do now?

First of all, is pass by partner forcing? I guess a lot of partnerships play it that way, but I don't. Appreciating the full value of the shape (visualizing diamond shortness across the table), Frederic pressed on with 5H, passed out (a bit surprisingly!).

High club was led and this was my view.

T8x
Txxxx
QT8xx
-

AJxxx
AQJ9x
-
Txx

Looks good as no double suggests the H finesse is on and that spades break. Ruffing in dummy and hooking the hearts was disppointing as LHO won and got out with the last remaining trump, East encouraging diamonds.

So it came down to the spade suit and I had to decide whom to play for Hx. If to the left, low spade from hand and if to the right, low spade from dummy to the J (which also caters for stiff K/Q and KQx). Reasoning that RHO's 3S and in tempo 5C indicated 10+ minor-suit cards, I went for spade from dummy.

This wrapped up +650 which meant 15 imps when teammates were +600 in 5C. Full deal:

_______T8x
_______Txxxx
_______QT8xx
________
K9x___________Qx
Kx____________x
xxx___________AKJxx
AQxxx_________KJxxx
_______AJxxx
_______AQJ9x
________
_______Txx

Raising on any excuse brought in the imps. Again.

2 comments:

Csaba said...

Congrats, really nice auction by you!

But the one thing that really amazed me was how they didn't double your 5H... That was very unexpected (u said they weren't very strong), for me at least

ulven said...

Not doubling was very unexpected. This was the last board of the match and we had judged every board correctly up to that point. I think they were affected by that.