Source: April 2015 IBPA Bulletin
Lederer Trophy: Feb 28 – Mar 1 2015 at the RAC in London
This year, the organisers expanded the field to ten teams, among them the England Open team (David Bakhshi/ David Gold, Tony Forrester/Andrew Robson), Zia & Friends (Sabine Auken/Roy Welland, Dennis Bilde/Zia Mahmood) and Ireland (Tom Hanlon/Mark Moran/Rory Boland, John Carroll/Tommy Garvey). To quote the organisers, the scoring is “fiendish”! Fortyeight Victory Points are available per match, 30 from the match’s IMP score and 18 from point-a-board, two VP per board in the nine-board matches. This was perhaps the most extraordinary deal from this year’s event at the Royal Automobile Club in Pall Mall. There was excitement at many tables; I’ve chosen two.
Yes, this is no misprint. In England Open v. England Women, Tony Forrester cleverly bid five hearts, preparing to run to spades when doubled. He hoped his partner would interpret the bid as a lead director, based on a singleton or perhaps king-doubleton.
Knowing that East/West had 11 spades between them, South suspected the truth, but decided to ‘collect’ the money from five spades doubled, knowing that his side would lose two heart tricks or the ace and a ruff. In a sense, North/South did well not to bid on to six diamonds, with East’s clever lead-directing five-heart bid having paved the way for the ace of hearts, heart ruff.
The trouble was that five spades doubled was cold. Declarer (East) ruffed South’s king-of-diamonds lead in dummy. He cashed the ace of hearts and ruffed a heart. He led a spade to South’s ace, won South’s second spade in dummy, ruffed a third heart, ruffed a diamond, ruffed a fourth heart, ruffed a diamond and cashed the two long hearts. Just a club was lost at the end – 11 tricks and doubled game made. East/West plus 650.
In another match, Ireland v. the Holders:
Ireland’s Tom Hanlon, a very successful poker player, knew that he would not get rich defending against six spades doubled (indeed – just one down), so he gambled out six notrump.
The odds required to make six notrump a paying proposition were thus quite low. If West had led a spade, six notrump would have had just 11 tricks (five in each minor plus the ace of spades. But when West (dubiously) placed the ace of hearts on the table, setting up three heart winners, declarer was soon chalking up 12 tricks.