Bridge corner: Surprising week of bridge

While attending a sectional tournament in Anniston this past Saturday, I was a bit surprised.

I received a 2007 Award of Excellence by the American Contract Bridge League’s Unit 157, the governing body for bridge in central Alabama.

The award was for developing the Shelby County Bridge Club from an idea in 2005 to reality in 2007.

It was also for our informative Web page, for bringing in more than 20 new members to the ACBL this past year, and for our on-going educational programs for novice and intermediate players. I was really surprised!

Winners this week:

Friday: Joann Bashinsky and Eddie McDanal, Frances Hereford and Rita Van Blommesteyn, Arlene Owens and Ann Dyer, Peggy and Gene Graham, Sabrina and Michael Lewis.

Saturday: Frances Hereford and Ruth Baldwin, Judy Chase and James Lawrence, Marion Henry and Adelaide St Raymond.

Monday: Happy 41st

anniversary to Linda and John. Liz Milko and Jerrie Friar, Kyn Hartwell and Betty Branch, Peggy Graham and Marilyn Spacht, Kathryn Howell and Kathryn Flemming, Boots Jennings and Fay Prince, Sevim and Cemil Cezayirli.

Monday evening we had five tables for Bridge 201 lesson – no Trump contracts.

Tuesday morning we had five more tables for our Defense series.

Bridge Tip of the Week:

Partner leads the 3 of spades to you defending against a NT contract. The board comes down with a nearly runnable club suit and the Q54 of spades.

You hold the K106.

What should you play? This is an example of not playing Third Hand High.

You must let declarer win this trick; insert the 10.

You need to prevent declarer from using the queen of spades as an entry to the board. Playing the king dooms your defense.

Hand of the Week:

Awesome bid by East. South takes the first club and shifts to a heart, the king winning.

Then continues a heart, this time declarer steps up with the ace and leads a third heart to the diamond king.

The king of spades is led from the board and incorrectly covered by North’s ace, who then compounds his error by returning a club, trumped by East in hand.

What was certain defeat is now certain victory as East goes to the board with the queen of spades and pitches the last heart on the good jack of spades.

Another club is ruffed in hand, leaving declarer with four trumps, North with three trumps and the nine of spades, South with three diamonds and the queen of hearts.

Declarer leads the queen of diamonds, taken by the ace.

Declarer wins two of the last three tricks, making an improbable two diamonds – improbable because 1NT by NS makes one once and three once!

John Randall and his wife, Linda, sponsor the Shelby County Bridge. For more information, call 451-5997 or e-mail