Barnet Shenkin

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Always on the lookout for new internet sites which will be of interest to my avid column reader I recommend taking a look at theInternational Bridge Press Association site. They publish very interesting Bulletins and are well worth a look. To view a Bulletin type (the # is for the Bulletin number).

The Bulletin now edited by John Carruthers of Canada contains hot bridge gossip, a calendar of exciting world bridge events and a number of great hands.

The first hand shown was submitted by Diego Brenner of Brazil bronze medalist in the Open Pairs in Montreal .He happened to be cruising the net on OK Bridge still one of the best sites for online bridge and found a pickup partner in Norberto Bocchi the Italian World Champion!

N ♠J 9 7 4
♥Q 2
♦8 6 5
♣7 6 4 3
W ♠Q 10 6
♥K J 7 4
♦A 10
♣A K J 9
 E ♠A 8 3 2
♥A 3
♦K Q J 2
♣Q 10 5
 S ♠K 5
♥10 9 8 6 5
♦9 7 4 3
♣8 2
2♣*Pass 2♠Pass
3♣Pass 3♦Pass
3♥Pass 4♣Pass
4♦Pass 4♥Pass
4NT**Pass 5♠***Pass
5NTPass 7♣Pass

* stayman

** RKC

*** 2 with queen

This is a very nice auction for natural style bidding and here 5NT would have meant we have all the aces partner how about a grand slam?

Brenner won the opening trump lead and played three rounds of hearts ruffing in dummy. With the fall of the ♥Q he was now home. If the ♥Q had not dropped he would still have been able to use the ♦10 and ♦A as entries in hand to ruff his last heart and draw trumps. If North had played the ♥Q under the ace declarer worried that this may be a singleton may well have drawn the trumps .Cashing his diamond winners next he would still make the contract by virtue of a squeeze on South who had to keep hearts and the guarded ♠K. Should North have held the ♠K and not South that would have led to the contract being defeated.

I visited the website and found this little gem played by Michel Lebel of France.

N ♠Q 10
♥10 9 8 5 2
♦A 10 8
♣A 9 7
W ♠K J 5
♥K 3
♦J 6 5 4 2
♣J 6 2
 E ♠9 7 6 4
♥J 7 6 3
♦K Q 7
♣10 8
 S ♠A 8 3 2
♥A Q
♦9 3
♣K Q 8 5 3

Lebel played 3NT on the lead of the ♦4. East won the ♦Q and returned the ♥3 to the queen and king. Now when West continued diamonds east won and played a third round. Declarer won the ♦A in dummy and discarded the ♥A! - two red Aces on the same trick .He now continued with the ♥10 to ensure his contract. Had East not switched to hearts at the second trick but continued diamonds declarer could still make the hand by winning the ♦A at the third trick and then cashing his club winners .West would find the pressure of the last club to be too much and would have to bare one of his major kings or be thrown in to lead from the other giving declarer his ninth trick.