Four different East players misdefended by Helen Sobel
Although there were extenuating circumstances, it is amazing that four different East players misdefended today’s hand.
On 6 November, 2015 At 10:57
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The Milwaukee Journal – 14 Feb 1950 by Helen Sobel ans Sam Fry Jr.
Although there were extenuating circumstances, it is amazing that four different East players misdefended today’s hand. Particularly since it took place in a national championship. The alibi of the four Easts (out of 10 who held the hand) doesn’t hold water.
West Dealer: Neither side vulnerable.
After West passed. North opened the bidding with four hearts. East doubled and that completed the auction. The particular East whom we observed defending the hand, opened the Jack of hearts. He figured that on the bidding, this lead could not lose anything, and he would get a look at dummy before deciding which of the other suits to attack.
North won the heart ace and playing no further trump, thereby concealing his holding somewhat led the 3. East went up with the ace, dummy played low, and West the 2. East now had to scout around for a setting trick. He played the spade ace and to his surprise and chagrin, got the deuce from his partner. He then tried the diamond ace and also got the deuce from his partner. East took his partners deuces and in particular the spade one too literally.
He finally came to the conclusion that the only hope of beating the contract was that the club deuce was a singleton and that the queen of clubs continuation, giving his partner a ruff, would be the only way to beat the contract.
This continuation obviously did the damage; South was able to set up the clubs with the 9 and 8 of hearts as entries and he got rid of three spades on clubs and the king of diamonds.
West was naively sympathetic with his partner and bemoaned the fact that his only spade outside of the king had been the deuce. East turnover should have been aware of the possibility of the king deuce of spades alone in the West hand and should have continued spades as the only hope rather than clubs. The simple clue is this:
What declarer in his right mind would lead a club at trick two with four clubs in his hand rather than complete the drawing of trumps?. Furthermore, if declarer, did have four clubs in his hand the contract would surely be beaten one trick anyway.
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