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Here is a curiosity from the Scarborough Congress, reported by Peter Stocken of Yorkshire. Table One's East will have felt rather sheepish after the deal, his double of 4 ♠ backfiring embarassingly poorly. He will have brightened up considerably after scoring up with his teammates. 

North Deals
Both Vul
A K 10 2
A Q 9 6 4
A 9 7
J 10 6 5 4 3 2
K 8 6 5
W   E
K J 8 7 5 3
Q J 7 4
Q 9 8 7 6 5 3
A 10 9 3

Table One

West North East South
  1  Pass 1 
Pass 3 1 Pass 4 1
Pass Pass Dbl2 Pass
Pass Pass    
  1. Is this enough?
  2. Speculative but he holds the hearts over dummy's bid suit and trumps are seemingly splitting badly ... err ...

Declarer won West's singleton heart lead with dummy's ace and cashed the ace of spades, revealing the 1-1 split. No more cards needed to be played. Declarer could cash the minor-suit aces and crossruff the remammg nine spades. Thirteen tricks and 4 . doubled plus three. N-S +1390.

Table Two

West North East South
  1  Pass 1 
Pass 4 1 Pass 4 NT2
Pass 5 3 Pass 7 4
Pass Pass Pass  
  1. Splinter bid, showing a raise to 4. with short clubs. The perfect hand for the bid.
  2. Loves partner's splinter. With his three small clubs ruffable, the only losers are keycards. He asks partner how many of those keycards he holds.
  3. One or four of "five aces" (incl. K).
  4. Presuming partner for four keycards (though one is just about possible), ie AK, A and A, 13 tricks should be solid

At Table Two, North-South, internationals John Holland (North) and Alan Mould (South) bid very efficiently to 7 ♠. The play did not tax declarer and 13 tricks were quickly chalked up for +2210. That represented a 13-imp gain for their team, on their way to ulti­mate victory.

However, the result on the deal could have been so different if either of Tables One's North or South could have uttered a word.


A redoubled contract making overtricks always scores better than the undoubled higher contract. 4 ♠ redoubled plus three would therefore score more than 7 ♠. (Tricks: 120 x 4) + (overtricks: 400 x 3) + (vulnerable game: 500) +(insult:100)=2280.

Redoubling carries the risk that the opponents will bid but I reckon both East and West would have placed their partner with very good spades and stuck it out. 

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