Linda Lee — My personal bridge blog

Thank You for …. (and a double dummy problem for you)

It is getting close to American Thanksgiving.  In Canada we give thanks about a month earlier.  So I have been thinking about what I am thankful for in a bridge sense.  Here goes.

I am thankful that I have had the opportunity to play for Canada on a Women’s teams.  I hadn’t realized how special it is to be part of a team.

I am thankful that I have had a chance to play with some great players.  But, my favourite partner of all is my son Colin.   He is a great player, an innovative bidder and a wonderful partner and the father of two grandchildren.  Here is a picture of Jessica, his daughter who is 2.

Colin and I are currently building a bidding system and practising on BBO in a bidding room.   I am even started to appreciate the parts of the system we have built.  When we started out I was confused about what to do with all the bids that are now available to opener who is know to have a limited hand.  What was a jump shift, what was a jump rebid in a suit etc.  I hadn’t realized that limiting opener’s hand had so many ripples through the system.  

Playing four card majors with canape has a lot of other ripples.  One good thing is that we don’t need to deal with hands that have short diamonds and no five card major.  We rarely have to open a diamond on a hand with two of them and this would only occur on a hand where we were under our notrump range and hand 3-3-2-5.  It is an interesting new world we are exploring. 

Jeff Smith asked me if we want to practice against him and I would like to do so fairly soon.  But first (especially against Jeff) we need to work out what to do against competition.  We did some practising with forcing club before and bids directly over one club are not so bad, but since some of our responses are a bit ambiguous, subsequent preempting might be more problematic.  So if you want to see the Smith-Thurston combo take on the Lee’s,  you might have a chance to check us out on BBO in a few weeks (if we can organize a common starting time).

I also had a chance to revisit There Must Be A Way, a book that I co-authored with Dr. Andrew Diosys, a Toronto physician in 1998.  He had collected some wonderful bridge problems.  His idea was to give you a deal, double dummy and ask if you would rather play or defend.  This was a rather new approach at this time.  I liked the problems a lot (I love bridge problems) and I got to analyze them and write up the solution.  

In 1999 Gene Benedict from Toledo Ohio sent in a letter with some issues in the analysis of two of the hands.   He was correct (although only one of the problems was serious).  Sadly this book is out of print but we are going to make it available in a downloadable ebook sometime soon.  So finally after all these years I got to fix up the problems and I was reminded that the whole thing was made so much easier by Deep Finesse.  So, as a bridge author and book publisher:

Thank you for Deep Finesse and thank you for all the readers who take the time to send in comments, corrections and suggestions about our books. 

Here is the problem for you that I corrected today.   Would you rather Play or Defend on this hand which was played by Helen Sobel in 4♥?  You get the lead of the ♣Q and East overtakes with the ♣K.  (At the table West opened 2◊, a good weak two bid.)

  ♠ 98  
  ♥ AQ84  
  ◊ J72  
West ♣ 9873 East
♠ QJ6   ♠ K107532
♥ 5   ♥ 1092
◊ K109653   ◊ 84
♣ QJ10   ♣ K2
  Helen Sobel  
  ♠ A4  
  ♥ KJ763  
  ◊ AQ  
  ♣ A654  

Answer soon.

Thanks to astute reader Roy Hughes who pointed out to me that I had originally left out the contract from the blog!

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