During each day of the NABC (National American) Eddie Kantar, one of the best American bridge writers, analyzes one bridge hand, for players who want to improve their bridge. This is the 8th day’s hand of the San Francisco NABC 2012:
Bidding commentary: North-South are playing the Jacoby 2NT response to a major suit opening bid. This response shows a game-forcing heart raise, typically balanced, with four or more trumps and 12-15 HCP. South’s 4 shows a minimum with no slam interest. After a Jacoby 2NT response, if opener has a singleton, opener bids that suit at the three level. If opener has a 5-5 pattern, opener jumps in the second suit at the four
level. If opener has a six-card suit with even slight extra values, opener rebids the major at the three level. Finally, if opener has a strong balanced hand (16-18 HCP), opener rebids 3NT. Opener can also take charge and bid 4NT, Blackwood. Defensive commentary: As East, win the A and shift to the 9. As West, win the A and
return the 10, hoping for a spade ruff if partner has the A.
Defensive commentary: As East, win the A and shift to the 9. As West, win the A and return the 10, hoping for a spade ruff if partner has the A.
Play commentary: As South, when a spade is led at trick two, play the K (higher equal) and win the spade return with the queen (higher equal). After all of this deception, you are still being threatened with a spade ruff. Your counter is
to play three rounds of diamonds, discarding your winning J, and then lead a heart.
Defensive commentary #2: As East, when in with the A, lead a spade.
Play Commentary #2: As South, after East wins the A and returns a spade, don’t get careless now! Ruff with the K (you can afford it) draw trumps, and claim. When you sense an impending ruff and are missing the ace of trumps, you may have to discard a winner before touching trumps.