A hand from Eilat, Red Sea Festival

I love reading bulletins - whatever the event. Imagine my surprise when I downloaded the Red Sea Festival bulletin and whilst I could see and understand the hand diagrams, the entire text was in Hebrew! Some sentences started with ? until I realised that they, like the Arabs, read and write from right to left! Yes... all very strange. I was intrigued with the hand depicted in this article and I asked a few of my Jewish patrons at my club whether they could assist me. They couldn't. So I asked Joe Israeli-Zindel of Johannesburg and sent him the pertinent page via email - sure enough he called me earlier and took great pains to tell me how the play went, and I am indebted to him for making sense of the article. Yes, it is a delightful hand, worthy of publication here.

The hand and the bidding follows. I forgot to ask what the vulnerability was, sorry.

Apparently the contract was 6 from the East side and South led a trump. Declarer won in dummy then drew another using the king from hand.

QUIZ:   How did he continue to make it?


Declarer played a small spade from his hand towards the queen at trick 3 - key play 1. Poor South was in a quandry - if he took the ace, declarer would obtain a vital discard of his losing heart on the Q. He therefore ducked.

Key play 2: Now declarer played the K - A and ruffed the 2. When the queen appeared, declarer breathed a sigh of relief.

He came back to hand with a trump, discarded a spade on the J and exited with a spade in this situation:

Poor South was truly endplayed upon taking the spade ace.

A pretty little hand with a pretty lesson in timing.

Thanks, Joe!

Posted Dec 2016