Source: The Norwalk Hour – 19 Nov 1966

Bridge Quiz

Howard Schenken
Howard Schenken

The happy knack of selecting brilliant opening leads is posseseed by very few players. But the ability to produce sound leads that do not give tricks away is almost equally probable.

To score high on these hands, all West has to do is select a lead that looks reasonably safe.! Under the stress of the 1966 World Championship, none of, the players who actually held these hands was able to do so! Can you?

a) Dealer North. Both VUL

West North East South
1 Pass 1
Pass 2 Pass 2
Pass 3 Pass 3
Pass 3NT Pass 4
Pass 4 Pass 6
Dbl Pass Pass Pass

West hold: Q 8  Q 9 6 5 3  J  K J 8 5 3

b) Dealer North. Both VUL

West North East South
1 Pass 1
Pass 1 Pass 2
Pass 3 Pass 3
Pass 4 Pass 4NT
Pass 6NT Pass Pass
Pass

West hold: 10 9 7 6  K 10 4 3 2  —  Q 6 3 2

c) Dealer East. Both VUL

West North East South
Pass 1
1 2 Pass 3
Pass 3NT Pass 4
Pass 5 Pass 6
Pass Pass Pass

West hold: K 7 5 2  K Q 10 9 8  J 8 4  7

d) Dealer North. E/W VUL

West North East South
1 Pass 1NT*
Pass 2 Pass 3NT
Pass Pass Pass

*Forcing.

West hold: A 9 7 5 3  8 2  A 6  J 10 9 8

e) Dealer West. E/W VUL

West North East South
1 Pass Pass 3
Pass 3 Pass 3NT
Pass Pass Pass

West hold: Q 10 7 4  A Q 3  Q J 10  A 9 2

Answers To Bridge Quiz:

Richard Frey
Richard Frey

a. J. West’s hair trigger double was based on the correct deduction that NS had gone over board on inadequate 4-3 diamond suit. On that hypothesis, a trump lead ought to be—and would have been—best West actually led a club.

b. 6. Spades must be the suit that is least likely to give away a trick and the spot card will be better than the ten if East happens to have the lone jack. However, it happens that the slam is beaten on any lead, except a heart—which is what our player actually led.

c. K. We told you to look for a safe lead. not a spectacular one!. The North American defender led a small spade — and gave declarer the slam.

d. 5. This is a close decision since a lead from the solid club sequence could conceivable be better than a spade! However, the standard lead from the longest unbid suit enabled Sam Kehela of Toronto to defeat the Italian contract. At the other table, the Italian West led the “safe” club jack and let Ira Rubin bring home the game.

e. 2. We plead guilty to introducing a switcheroo inasmuch as the club lead is not exactly automatic. Yet it is the only lead to beat the contract. The Italian defender opened the spade four and allowed Lew Math of Los Angeles to bring home a game that was not bid at the other table.

  • Howard Schenken: (September 28, 1903 – February 20, 1979) was an American bridge player, writer, and long-time syndicated bridge columnist. He was from New York City. He won three Bermuda Bowl titles, and set several North American records. Most remarkably he won the Life Master Pairs five times, the Spingold twelve, and the Vanderbilt Trophy ten times; the LM Pairs and Vanderbilt records that still stand today.
  • Richard Lincoln “Dick” Frey: (February 12, 1905 – October 17, 1988) was an American contract bridge player, writer, editor and commentator. From New York City.
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