ACES ON BRIDGE

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - Fun & Games - By Bobby Wolff Dist. by An­drews McMeel for UFS

Dear Mr. Wolff: What would be your hopes for the world of bridge in 2020?

— Nostradamu­s, Sacra­mento, Calif.

AN­SWER: Per­haps I should hope for some­thing at­tain­able and not look for pie in the sky. Maybe we might be suc­cess­ful in per­suad­ing a few school dis­tricts to teach bridge to the pupils, ac­cept­ing that it is a fine tool to help children un­der­stand math­e­mat­ics and de­velop con­cen­tra­tion?

Dear Mr. Wolff: Hold­ing SPADES K-8-4, HEARTS Q-4, DI­A­MONDS A-10-64-3-2, CLUBS J-10, I elected to open one di­a­mond rather than two, be­cause at fa­vor­able vul­ner­a­bil­ity I thought I had too much to pre­empt. We reached a hope­less slam, and my part­ner com­mented that he did not feel this hand was worth an opener. What do you say? — Hambone, Naples, Fla.

AN­SWER: Wolff’s rule for pre­empt­ing No. 1: Never pass with a bad suit — open one or two. This hand doesn’t qual­ify as a good suit, so you can choose to go high, go low or pass. To me, the pass stands out; with a bad suit — ex­actly the wrong top honor with which to pre­empt, since if part­ner is short, you can give him ruffs — and not enough to open, I pass. With the club queen in­stead of the jack, I might stretch to open.

Dear Mr. Wolff: What are the ad­van­tages of lead­ing the king from the ace-king? If your part­ner is void, he won’t know if you are lead­ing from the ace-king or king-queen and so can­not tell if it is right to ruff or not. Wouldn’t lead­ing the ace in­form your part­ner you have it, while lead­ing the king would re­veal that you don’t have it?

— Clear­wa­ter Chuck, Raleigh, N.C.

AN­SWER: The more com­mon prob­lem with the lead of an am­bigu­ous king is how to sig­nal with length in­clud­ing the jack, fac­ing a king lead. Com­pared to that, lead­ing the un­sup­ported ace and hav­ing part­ner know you need a sig­nal for at­ti­tude, not count, is more help­ful and comes up more of­ten. Hav­ing a void fac­ing the king is rare enough that I’ve seen only two dis­as­ters along this line in my life. But one was this year, I ad­mit!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.