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Miss Brash, Overly Optimistic As Usual, Lost this NT Contract By Easley Blackwood

Ellensburg Daily Record – 4 Jan 1956

miss brashMake humanics your trumps. Study the art of playing the people as well as the cards. Remember that the human factor is allways at work. Bidding is a legal conversation with your partner. But to «converse» intelligently, you must know your partner’s language. Consider Mr. Dale’s tactics in today’s deal. He figured Miss Brash, did not have the cards for her two no trump bid. Why? The answer is simple, if she had enough to bid two no trump—she would have bid three. That is the way she usually operates.

The Reasoning

Now this was not the only consideration which prompted Mr. Dale’s final decision. He knew that Miss Brash plays her cards well, and if his opponents had been a couple of Muzzys or even a couple of fair players, he would have gone ahead and bid three no trump anyway. But Mrs. Keen and Mr. Champion are good, sound and tricky defenders. So he passed.

Mr. Champion opened the four of spades and Miss Brash won with the jack. She frowned slightly at the dummy. With her usual optimism, she felt sure she could make three no trump, especially with the favorable spade lead.

Hearts First

She started on the hearts, leading the ten and letting the ten won. Mrs. Keen played the four -without a second’s  hesitation. And now Miss Brash was positive she had missed a game. Mrs. Keen’s play had much to gain and very little chance of losing. If Miss Brash had three or more hearts, nothing would prevent her from winning three tricks in the suit. But if she had exactly two hearts, then holding the king would very probably limit her to one trick in the suit. With a total of seven hearts out she would have to be a wizard to know that the king would drop under the ace on the second round. At trick three Miss Brash led her last heart and finessed dummy’s jack. Triumphantly Mrs. Keen won with the king. Since there were no more entries to the board, Miss Brash ended up with exactly six tricks.

Down two at two no trump, — With a chastened look she turned to Mr. Dale: -«Nice pass; partner» she said with a nice voice.


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