Was she pushed or did she fall?
by Toine van Hoof (Netherlands)


Though Svend Novrup of Denmark has been here for about four days, to my surprise, the Bulletin has not contained any D7
stories yet. I'm pleased to submit the following hand that I saw in one of the Ladies matches.

N/S Vul. Dealer East.

                          S J64
                          H Q9853
                          D T
                          C 7653
                 S QT972          S AK83
                 H 4              H AJ72
                 D J83            D Q762
                 C AQ94           C J
                          S 5
                          H KT6
                          D AK954
                          C KT82


             West     North     East     South
                                 1D       Pass
              1S       Pass      3S       Pass
              4S     All Pass

After the lead of D10, the hand is quickly over. North gets her ruff and declarer, after drawing trumps in two rounds,
can ruff two clubs in dummy and pitch one on DQ.
Diamonds were led at every other table. In the match I was watching, however, North preferred the H5. The best play (I
think) is to win the HA, take one round of trumps with the Ace and crossruff in hearts and clubs.  As South did not
overcall in hearts, this line is almost certain to succeed.
Declarer had a different view. She took three rounds of trumps, South throwing a diamond and a club and continued
with a diamond to ten, Queen and King. South returned HK,  ruffed by West, who was now in an awkward position.
She chose to continue with the D8, probably hoping to find North with the bare Ace. Much to her annoyance, North
discarded and South won D9. South, who saw that another heart would be pointless, now tried a small club. Declarer
had no choice and ducked. After CJ she led another diamond from table. South won the Ace and played her last heart.
West ruffed, cashed CA, throwing HJ from dummy and ruffed a club.
It was not until now, that I became aware of the devious scheme declarer had pulled off. There it was, ready to take
the last trick, the D7.
"One down?" declarer assumed. "No, one beer", I replied. The question marks in her eyes convinced me that Mister
Novrup still has a lot of work to do.

 

 

A Triple Grand Coup in Defense
Toine van Hoof (The Netherlands)

Yesterday's bulletin contained this interesting hand:

Love All. Dealer West.

                          S AJ954
                          H -
                          D Q762
                          C 9762
                 S K6                S QT732
                 H AKJ986            H 5
                 D AJ4               D 53
                 C K8                C AJ543
                          S 8
                          H QT7432
                          D KT98
                          C QT

The popular result was 1S doubled by North, off three. There are several ways to keep declarer to four tricks, but
Piet Jansen and Jan Westerhof, from the Netherlands, found the most artistic one. By ruffing each other's tricks, they
managed to execute a triple Grand Coup in defense.
The lead was the H5, H2 and H6, ruffed. Declarer played a diamond to King and Ace. West shifted to the SK, which was
won by the Ace. Now the DQ was cashed and a diamond ran to the Jack, East showing out in clubs.
West could have played another spade but chose to cash CK and continued with the HK. North discarded a club and
Jansen, foreseeing a nasty endplay, ruffed with S3. He cashed CA and played the CJ in this position:

                          S J95
                          H -
                          D 7
                          C 9
                 S 6                S QT7
                 H AJ98             H -
                 D -                D -
                 C -                C J4
                          S -
                          H QT74
                          D T
                          C -

The danger now is that North can ruff the next trick and wins another trick in the end because East gets endplayed.
Westerhof correctly ruffed the CJ with his six of spades. If you didn't know any better, you'd think you witnessed a
husband and wife combination settling a marital dispute.
Now came the HA. Declarer discarded D7 and, of course, Jansen unnecessarily ruffed with the S7. He exited with C4
and claimed the last two tricks with a big smile.
This may not be the best defense of this tournament, but it must surely be the funniest one.