SOME DECLARERS ARE JUST TOO DAMN GOOD.......( By Howard Bigot-Johnson )
Sometimes there is no justice in this world, when say on the verge of glory you happen to meet the one player who is and always be will your nemisis. There I was...up against a player who oscillates from being brilliant one minute to misreading bids and/or revoking the next. But against me......he always comes good......and this hand was no exception.
Love all....and so I opened the bidding with a super-mini 1NT ( 8-10 points). This was followed by a double from North, and two more passes. I redoubled, pass, and my partner bids 2C showing clubs and a major. Now this time round, it was The Man in the South chair who doubled. So I redoubled again ( saying partner please name your major ), pass, 2H from partner, double from The Man, pass....... and 2S by North. Now The Man bid 3NT to end the auction.
I led the 6 of heart, and dummy came down with AQ109x.....A.....A10xx......xxx, and declarer's hand as it turned out was Kx.....Q9xx....Q8x......KJxx. He clearly had a lot of work to do.
So he set off after taking the first trick in dummy with the stiff Ace, to play a diamond to his queen and my king. So I fired back another heart to be taken by my partner's king. At trick 4 partner returned the 10 of hearts taken by declarer's queen. Then the came the sickenly successful finesse of my diamond jack. So when he came back to hand with the king of spades, he sweetly finessed me for the jack of spades (!) to make the contract....giving me zero match points.
Sure enough the scoresheet was littered with 3NT-1 all over the place, with the defence making 1S, 1D, 2H and 1C.
Why pick on me ?....I said to myself. And why play me for both jacks ? .....I said to him. His answer was both thoughtful and polite. " Two clues were there. You had come up with KJ of diamonds, and by inference the heart jack. So if you didn't hold the club Ace then it was almost certain you had the club queen and the spade jack. Moreover, if you did hold the club Ace, then you couldn't have the club queen......but still enough room to possess the spade jack. However, the main clue was your second redouble.....saying please partner choose your major. This indicated....but not conclusively....that you much preferred to play in a major, which suggested to me the presence of BOTH 4 card majors in your hand.
Upon my tortured soul.... how right he was, since I held : Jxxx......Jxxx......KJx....Qx
And the next board.....well history repeated itself yet again, when he pulled off one more piece of magic to dump me with another galactic bottom. Some declarers it seems are just too damn good.........
( Adapted from an original article written by Dave Robinson for Sheffield BC newsletter )