Fathom

Hi all

Last weekend we played a GNT A qualifier weekend. We’re still in, just two hurdles left for a ticket to Toronto this summer. Exit team Friedman and exit team Saunders. They were seeded pretty high, but I never even heard of them. I’ll just play my European ignorance card once again.

So one thing that I’ve learned this weekend is not to antagonize the asshole(s). Let them be. Let them suffer. Don’t take notice. And beat the crap out of them with cards, just cards and nothing but cards.

Here’s me taking a wrong turn. Say, roughly minus 15 imp.

South
KJT4
85
JT3
T952
West
North
East
South
1
1
1
pass
2
2
3
3
4
Double1
pass
… pass2
pass
 
 
 

1. Action double
2. I think I’d rather defend

West
Q8
KQT7
K84
KQ73
South
KJT4
85
JT3
T952

So I lead the Jack and dummy comes down. Geoff plays the 2 (according to Granovetter’s A switch in Time: don’t switch , please!) and declarer plays something small too. Now what?

At the table I unthinkingly continued and that was the end of the defence, for this was the complete deal:

West Dealer
NS Vul
North
A953
632
AQ9652
West
Q8
KQT7
K84
KQ73
East
762
AJ94
7
AJ864
South
KJT4
85
JT3
T952

Declarer ruffed the second , drew trump and cashed out on his . We write -590 and I see we’ve missed out on our best spot in a 4-4 fit 15-count 4. Or perhaps I should take that 2 at Lavinthal-face value and switch to a . At the table it just didn’t click in my head. Overall I’m glad the opponents made more mistakes over 128 boards, but I surely need to get my game up if I want to make it to Toronto.

2 thoughts on “Fathom

  1. Perhaps you are a little too hard on yourself on this deal. Even playing “switch in time”-signals, north can be pretty sure that if he discourages spades that you will almost certainly continue diamonds. He would like to play an excessive card to signal in the non-obvious switch suit, but he just does not have that card. However, he has been listening to the bidding too. With 5 spades you would almost certainly have bid 4, so he can place declarer with a 3 card spade suit, to go with 4 or 5 hearts and 4 or 5 clubs. You won’t have 4 diamonds for the same reason, too much of a fit to pass. So declarer has a singleton diamond. Even if he gets a club ruff, he needs you to have a spade trick. So why not give you no chance at all to make a mistake? Take the diamond ace at trick one. Play the spade Ace and the spade 9 at trick 2 and 3. Now you have only one option left to break the contract. Sure, you will miss out on down 2, but getting a plusscore will already be a good result.

    On the other hand, you can make the same reasoning that you need to find a club void in the other hand to break the contract. But still, taking control when you know how to break it seems more important than giving the right signal on this hand.

  2. Thanks Kees, that’s a fine and thorough analysis.

    In retrospect the right thing looks blatantly obvious, but at that moment I needed my partner to provide a safety net. It’s nice food for thought & discussion.

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