UNIT 168 NEWS
The Unit Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday, November 19 at the Harrisburg Bridge Club. In conjunction with the meeting, we'll be having a two-session Swiss Team Game. The game is stratified and is a STaC game paying silver points. Entry fee is $20 per person. Please register your teams in advance by e-mail to
. For more information, call 717-525-8074 and leave a message for a call back. During the annual meeting we will be voting on representatives to the Unit Board of Governors. The nominees are Malin Castronuovo from York and Rosalind Braunstein from Lancaster.
We will be hosting a number of special games this month, including the Birthday game on Sunday, November 12 at 1 p.m. and the monthly Brunch and Bridge on the 18th at 11 a.m. Our monthly Wine and Cheese game is scheduled on Wednesday, November 8 at 6:30 p.m. Hospitality begins one-half hour before game time for each of these special games. Monthly Swiss will take place on Wednesday, November 15. Dinner at 5:45, game at 6:30. This is a STaC game paying silver points. The Club will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.
to these Unit 168 members on their new master point rank achievements:
Silver Life Master:
Gold Life Master:
Wacky Hands & Gadgets -
by Dave Bort
2/1 Slow Arrival (or Not)
In a hand from the fabulous Hagerstown Sectional this fall, one board offered a choice. With only us vulnerable, partner's and my hands were:
North: 73 KQ9642 AT6 Q7
South: KQ A7 843 AKT986
I started the bidding, which proceeded (opponents silent throughout):
(1) It's only 11 points, but it's a 7-loser, Rule of 20 hand, with something close to two quick tricks, so I'm opening (cue the mantra: "It's only a game")
(2) 2/1 game force
(3) Showing my 6-card suit, and now thinking my Club Queen is working, after partner's bid, but still only seeing my hand as a 6-loser hand, so not worth a stronger bid
(4) Setting trump, and using slow arrival, since partner's hand may be worth 5 "cover cards" (to cover my losers), and if my hand is better than the expected 7-loser hand I showed by opening, we may have a slam
(5) Given partner has shown mild slam interest, and given that their 2C bid improved my hand to a 6-loser hand, I think I'll be safe at the 5-level, so I'm checking for keycards
(6) 2 keycards in Hearts, without the Queen
(7) We're only missing 1 keycard, and partner's Clubs may run, given my Club Queen, so I'm going for it (again cueing the mantra)!
Making 7, on the lead of the Diamond King! Since West didn't bid 2S over my partner's 2C game force (holding AJT94 in Spades), East didn't know to lead a Spade, so they "went to bed" with the Spade Ace.
At least, that's how the auction COULD have gone. Instead, in the ACTUAL auction, partner rebid 4H after my 2H bid, effectively killing the auction. Oh well. Note to self for the future: better to do one's best to bid the cards the partnership are dealt, than assume one knows what will probably happen, and settle for a sub-optimum contract.
Weak Freak, Cuebid Raise (or Not)
Another Hagerstown Sectional hand, Board 9 on Saturday morning was a load of fun! With the opponents vulnerable, partner's and my hands were:
North: K984 KJ83 3 Q852
South: None QT642 AQJ9765 3
I started the bidding, which went something like:
(me) East South
Pass Pass 1D(1)
X(2) 1H(3) 2H(4) 3H(5)
3S(6) Pass(7) 4S(8) 5H(9)
X(10) Pass(11) Pass Pass(12)
(1) Only 9 HCP, but with a 4-loser hand, partner opened - Way to Go, Partner!
(2) With A653 A95 KT KJ97, West easily has the best hand at the table
(3) Not letting a double derail our auction, I'm showing my majors up the line
(4) Our opponent's cuebid showed a good hand in the context of the auction, with both Spades and Clubs (holding QJT72 7 842 AT64)
(5) An underbid; since I've already shown 1 trick by taking a free bid, partner could have made a cuebid raise to force us to the 3-level, showing a 5-loser hand or better. By simply bidding at the 3-level, partner's bid looks merely competitive.
(6) Thinking their Diamond King may be well-placed
(7) Given partner's underbid, and suspecting my Spade King may be poorly placed, I don't think I have anything more to say
(8) Liking their trump suit length, combined with shortness in our suit
(9) With a real weak freak hand, partner still has extras she hasn't shown, so she denies the opponents an easy try for game
(10) Thinking we've over-reached, and they've got us
(11) I also am thinking: Uh oh, now we're in for it, partner
(12) I don't think so, partner, watch this!
Making 5, doubled, on the lead of the Club 7. East-West did have a Spade game, and could have pushed to a 5SX save, down 1, but would have had to think we were making 5H to take that save.
So, whether partner meant to deceive the opponents, "slow-walking" them into doubling our making 5-level contract, or simply failed to show her strength at the opportune moment, she certainly delivered the goods when it counted. A tie for a top, well played, partner!
to the second hand from the October 4Spot ("Good Old Jacoby, with a Courtesy Cue-bid"), West first rebid should be 3N, rather than 3H (which would have precipitated a Director call, since it came after the opponent's 3S call). Thanks go to eagle-eyed George Laniado, who first spotted the typo.
Next month, there's certain to be more wacky hijinks. There always are!