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Fine Play Wins Thirteen Tricks

  by Richard Pavlicek

The fourth annual Seniors’ Regional was held August 11-14 in Sun City Center, Florida. This popular tournament is open only to players 55 years of age or older. Nevertheless, with bridge not being a physical game, the competition is still strong.

One of the winners was Gracie Gabbai of Ft. Lauderdale, who captured the Women’s Pairs in her first-time partnership with Betty Plappert of Ft. Myers. These two ladies met only five minutes before game time, and thus could discuss only the most basic agreements. Their system was just “good old-fashioned bridge” and common sense.

Today’s deal greatly contributed to their win. Gracie Gabbai, South, became declarer in four spades after a sound auction.

4 S South
Both Vul
S A K 2
H Q J 10 9 8 7
D A 5 3
C 6

1 H
2 H
4 S
1 S
3 C
S Q 7
H 5 4 3
D K Q J 7
C 10 9 8 4
TableS 9 6 5
H K 6 2
D 10 8 6 2
C Q J 3

Lead: D K
S J 10 8 4 3
D 9 4
C A K 7 5 2


Particular note North’s third-round jump to four spades to show three good trumps and maximum values (considering her previous two-heart rebid).

West led the diamond king to dummy’s ace and declarer immediately directed her efforts toward establishing the heart suit. A heart to the ace; a spade to the king; then the heart queen was led. East chose not to cover (it matters not), so South discarded her diamond loser. The next heart lead was ruffed by South and the spade jack was led to the queen and ace.

With one enemy trump still outstanding, declarer continued to lead hearts. Whenever East chose to ruff, South would overruff then return to dummy with a club ruff to cash any remaining heart winners.

The defense was helpless as declarer won all 13 tricks for a top score.

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© 1984 Richard Pavlicek