The late Al Sobel, for many years Chief Tournament Director of the American Contract Bridge League was one of the great bridge raconteurs. While many of the tales he recounted were doubtless apocryphal, they were funny.
Here’s one of his best. Al sitting West was partnering his wife, Helen Sobel, in a rubber bridge game. The opponents got to four spades doubled and redoubled. Here’s the story in Al’s own words.
«We beat the four spade contract one trick, but the amazing thing is that with my relatively worthless hand I took the four tricks that our Side made!
My queen of clubs opening lead was permitted to win the first trick. At trick two I led the 10 of hearts and declarer seeing no point in reaching over to the end of the table to play either the king or the jack, flicked the seven from dummy. When Helen followed suit with the deuce, my 10 captured the trick.
«I next led the two of clubs, and my partner’s king was taken by South’s ace. He then cashed the king, ace and queen of trumps, picking up Helen’s three pieces. Seeing that he had to lose a diamond trick, he decided now to lead his two of diamonds, my nine won the trick when Helen followed with the six of diamonds. That made three tricks I had won. I then cashed the club jack for the setting trick.»
«Needless to say I politely inquired of my partner why she had doubled with such garbage in her hand. Her answer was a simple straightforward one: So you would have a good story to tell!’