Editorial by Paul Bowyer
Welcome to the twenty-first edition of VuBridge Expert Kit. Here, we are continuing the theme of defense – this time by considering the topic of holding up high cards. Six of these deals look at No-trump hands where holding up Aces is a matter of defensive routine. These example deals, however, extend this principle a little further and show that withholding high cards may have both technical merit and a tactical dimension. The second series of deals looks at suit play. Here, it may be more difficult to duck tricks and the temptation to grab tricks before the rats get at them is strong. However, there are many occasions where patience pays off – especially when you play your cards in tempo and give nothing away to declarer.
The third series of eight deals in this issue is, as ever, all about counting the hand. These hands, written by our talented young star Ben Norton, focus on different forms of counting. Sometimes you have to count points, sometimes hand patterns. With this set of deals there is little or no opposition bidding to help you; the auction is brutally swift. Don your Sherlock Holmes deerstalker hat and work out who has what from the clues you are given.
Defense: Holding Up - Part I
This series of six deals, the first half of a dozen hands on the topic, is all about holding up significant high cards in defense.
Sometimes such plays are technical (in that the defense disrupts declarer's communications) and sometimes they are tactical (in that the play may confuse and distract declarer from his intended line of play).
Here, we show you some variations on these themes and aim to help you improve your defensive game.
As ever, if you are going to make a deceptive play, it is best to do so in tempo and not stare at the ceiling for some time before making the play. And no, you are not allowed to dither with intent if you have nothing to consider. Such tactics are considered the lowest of the low.
Defense: Holding Up - Part II:
This series of six deals, the second half of a dozen hands on the topic, is all about holding up significant high cards in defense.
The first series of six deals focused on No-trump deals. Here, in this second series of six, we consider trump contracts.
Ducking Aces and Kings in suit contracts may look riskier than in No-trump contracts, but the rewards can be great. It's all a question of timing.
Once again, there are technical and tactical aspects of this defense.
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