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Just catching up at this point

I've been quiet for a number of reasons, including some stuff at work that I'm not ready to talk about just yet. I've also been busy in the evenings with LP stuff, so I haven't bothered to find the time to write anything. I really should, though, since I found two Bridge hands from last Wednesday interesting enough to write down.

Wednesday's Bridge: I played with Dan against Jerry and Raymond, and we had some great hands and some terrible hands. The great one was S A-K-6-2 H A-J-10-9-7 D K-10-3 C 3. I opened 1H, and Dan responded 1NT. I strongly considered 2D at this point, but since we hadn't discussed bidding short suits in this situation, I stuck with 2S. He passed that with S 9-4 D A-Q-J-9-x-x C Q-x-x-x-x. It wasn't such a bad contract - I ducked the club lead, then ruffed the next club, cashed the ace of hearts, and crossruffed three more tricks. That was five in the bank and the top two trumps left in hand, so all I needed was a diamond trick. They were 2-2, giving me an overtrick. But I like a 3D bid on that hand, denying notrump and both of my suits while suggesting a very nice place to play. I raise to 4D, and I think his hand is worth a game try. The only possible danger is that the opponents might lead trump at both opportunities, preventing two club ruffs. I believe the best play in that case is to win the opening lead in dummy and ruff a heart immediately, then lose the club and win in dummy again. Now you cash the ace of hearts just to see whether an honor falls - on the actual layout, it does, so you just lead a heart and toss a club, not caring whether the last honor would have ruffed out or not. The worst the opponents can possibly do is lead another trump, preventing even one club ruff, but now you've got two more heart tricks to go with the nine top tricks you started with. If no honors fall under the ace, you ruff another heart and hope for a 4-4 split, if the trump split 3-1. If they were 2-2, you only need to set up one heart trick, so you can run the third heart and play for any split that's not 5-3 with both honors offside. It's not guaranteed, but there's a good enough shot that I think it's worth going for the game. Definitely over 2S. In the other interesting hand, he opened 1NT when I had S Q-10-8-x-x-x H A-x-x D K-x C K-x. Jerry overcalled 2D, so I jumped to 4S. It seemed like such a sensible contract. Dan had S K-7 H Q-J-x-x D A-Q-x-x C J-x-x. Raymond led the nine of diamonds, so I let it run to my king and led a diamond back, hoping to throw a club on the third diamond. But Raymond ruffed immediately with the nine of spades and led a heart - queen, king, ace. I led a spade, and Raymond sluffed a club. Seriously. Jerry covered the king and led a club, predictably, to Raymond's A-Q. He led back a heart to the jack and Jerry's ruff. I ran the diamond return and threw off both of my hearts, leaving me trump-tight. Fortunately, I was in dummy with the 7 of spades and could easily finesse out Jerry's J-x to get out of it with off two. I've been searching for a way I could have made the contract double-dummy, but I think the best I can do is off one. Jerry can take the ace of trump and run two club tricks before I have any opportunity to get rid of either, and if he doesn't ruff something else, I don't think I have the dummy entries for a grand coup. I can't get rid of my hearts unless I take the first trick in hand and sluff the other diamond on the jack of clubs before running the A-Q, so the timing is tight. I can't cash the ace of hearts before losing the clubs, or Jerry ruffs a heart, but if I don't, then I don't have a winner in dummy that I can afford to use. I can't set up a throw-in, because I lose the three tricks I can afford at Jerry's whim.

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Yes, I'm THAT Nidoking. Sometimes I write fanfiction... often I waste all my time playing video games and watching anime. But it's not a waste if I enjoy it, right? I can quote from a movie, video game, anime series, or British comedy apropos of just about any situation, and one of my main goals in life is to entertain people. (The other big one is amassing as much anime and manga as I can... see below for a progress report.) That's me in a nutshell. ("Help! I'm trapped in a nutshell! What a bloody great nutshell this is!")
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