Wednesday night is league night. Sacrosanct. I’ve missed only one in seven years and that was when my daughter was giving birth. Priorities, you know. But last Wednesday I had an offer I couldn’t refuse: dinner with Henry Kissinger. Not a date, I reluctantly confess, a smallish dinner, but you can’t have everything. He may be 91, but boy does he still have ‘it’! Ooh, the voice. Ooh, the brain. Ooh, the twinkle. I gushed inwardly like some bodice-ripping Poldark groupie. But I have to admit, when talk turned to world defence, my thoughts drifted away momentarily to bridge defence and how everyone says it’s the hardest part of the game. Certainly it is for me.
Today’s hand is from last month’s fabulous Lederer Trophy, for which my teammate Nick Sandqvist won the prize for best defended hand:
West (Tom Townsend) led the ♣10 which Nick took with his King. He needed to find the killing switch or declarer has time to develop nine tricks without much difficulty. And find it he did by returning the ♠5, creating a tenace for his Ace 10. Declarer won in dummy to preserve his entry to the diamonds, and played a Diamond to his Ace, Nick dropping the nine. Deciding that Diamonds were not breaking, South tried to sneak a trick with a crafty ♦6, but Tom pumped up with the Jack and played a spade through to give the defence two clubs, a diamond and two spades for one down.
Luckily, I wasn’t invited to Mr K’s dinner during the Lederer. I’m not quite as sure of my priorities as when my daughter was giving birth but I have a feeling my first love would have prevailed.
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