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Bridge & Humor: Charles Goren

Charles Goren didnt play much tournament bridge in his last years, preferring to live quietly in Miami. One day when he was playing a pairs competition the following occurred.


9 6 4
A J 9 6 5
8 6
10 7 5

J 8
8 3 2
Q J 10 7
K J 9 3


A 10
10 7 4
9 5 3 2
8 6 4 2


K Q 7 5 3 2
A K 4

South West North East
2* Pass 2NT Pass
4NT Pass 5 Pass
6 The End    

* strong

The Q was led to South’s A. K was cashed and diamond ruffed. A hearts was returned to the K and the Q next. This was overtaken in dummy so that J could be played and Q was discarded.

Declarer now said in shocked tone that he has mistorted his cards. He continued with a trump to the K, which held, and then perforced played a low trump back.

All was well and Goren won with the ace, returning a club. Declarer played the ace, and drew trumps claiming his contract.

He then apologized to both opponents saying: » I mistook the ace of clubs for the ace of spades»

Percy Sheardown, a wartime RAF pilot, piped up, and said: Sorry Charlie I could have beaten the slam.

  How come? exclaimed Goren

I should have led the king of clubs, said Sheardown, while South still thought his queen was a singleton.


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