52 bridge mistakes to avoid

27 Jan 2016 @ 12:20

David Bird, the prolific bridge-book writer from England, has got to the nitty-gritty of the game in «52 Bridge Mistakes to Avoid«. (Master Point Press).

The highlighted errors are split 13 on bidding, 25 on declarer play and 14 on defense. Each chapter contains a few deals and ends with a list of useful tips.

This layout is in the chapter entitled «Not Thinking Straight,» which could refer to every mistake anyone makes.


Look at the West and North cards. South is in four spades. West cashes his two top hearts, everyone following. What should he lead at trick three?

aaxxNorth’s three-heart cue-bid showed spade support and at least game-invitational values.

At the table, West shifted to the club jack, hoping his partner had the king. However, South won with his king, drew trumps in four rounds, and conceded a trick to the diamond ace.

If East held the club king, South had accepted his partner’s game invitation with only 11 high-card points, which was extremely unlikely.

Since East clearly had a Yarborough, West should have led a low heart at trick three. (Not the queen, which would have established dummy’s jack.) East would have ruffed, forcing South to overruff. But now, if South drew trumps, when he led a diamond, West would have won and cashed two hearts. Or, if South turned to diamonds after one round of trumps, West would have taken the trick and led the heart queen to establish a trump trick for himself.

Counting high-card points on all deals will help you avoid numerous mistakes.