Janet De-Botton

Bridge | 1 May 2014

Bridge | 1 May 2014
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Somewhere highly intellectual I read that they were bringing back the Generation Game, recalling, in all their excruciating mundanity,  Brucie’s catchphrases.

I had to eat my own snootiness at the Easter Championship Pairs, won by Susanna, yes OUR Susanna, playing with England supremo David Gold. ‘Didn’t she do well?’ I shrieked — and indeed she did. The first pair’s event is a two-day, three-session tournament, at the highly demanding matchpoint  scoring, so every trick counts. In other words, there’s no faking it. When you win that event you’ve played proper grown-up bridge. That’s why it’s called the Championship Pairs.

Check out Ms Gross on this hand, executing a squeeze without the count, and doing very, very well:

West led the ♠2. Assuming both Heart honours are onside, which seems likely, there are 11 tricks on top. West is also a big favourite to hold the A for his vulnerable overcall and, having come this far in the card reading, instinct might tell us that the location of the Q is irrelevant — West is going to come under enormous pressure in the endgame.

Susanna won the lead and played two rounds of trumps. A heart to the ten held, and a top Spade was followed by a Spade ruff and the rest of the trumps.

When the last trump was played, West was in real discomfort, holding three Hearts and the A, Q of Diamonds. He let go the Q, and now the 4 can be discarded from the dummy, as it has served its purpose. West makes the Diamond Ace, but Susanna had 12 tricks and a near top.