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DEEP-AND-MEANINGFULS #6


Paul Brayshaw taps into the innermost thoughts of Deep Finesse®

From the previous issue:

BAWA Swiss Teams 2018, Round 4

Board 18
East Deals
N-S Vul
J 7 5 3
7 6 3
J 7
Q J 5 2
Q
8 2
K 10 5 4 2
A K 9 7 4
N
WE
S
A K 8 2
A K J 10 5
A 3
10 3
10 9 6 4
Q 9 4
Q 9 8 6
8 6

[In the post-mortem, you have risen to DF's challenge on this hand by finding not only the double guard squeeze that allows West to make 6NT on any lead (and the overtaking double squeeze as a recovery if a vital unblocking play is forgotten) but also the killing lead from South that defeats 6NT from the East seat.]

"Who said that these unusual squeezes never come up and don't bear studying? That's two different ones on the same hand! As you look up to share your findings, you discover the room is empty and the bar is being packed up for the night. Ahhh, shame that - DF has just cooed softly to you from its corner matrix again. You stare and raise your eyebrows considerably. What's this? If you thought this hand was over, you were wrong. East can make 6D. But not West!

Before you can even comprehend this, it is suggested that you leave the venue unless you want to sleep there. Seems as though this will need to be continued at that other venue - home."

On the road, you continue to be flabbergasted by the incredible Board 18. So, the opposite scenario appears to be the case in 6D when compared with 6NT. According to that table of truth in the corner of the hand record, West is the one who can only make 11 tricks in diamonds, yet East can make 12! In no trumps, West could make 12 tricks but East only 11. DF positively beamed at you with these seemingly incongruous numbers. The lure is too great. You realise that you may now be in for a sleepless night.

As you drive along, you consider where the twelve tricks would actually come from in diamonds. Nine toppies. The likelihood of being able to draw trumps seems slim. Hence, there is no way you will be able to get a tenth top trick. The other three tricks will have to come from ruffs. One ruff will be a S. Another will be a H. And the twelfth trick? Hmmmm, yes, it will have to be one of those things that's so cunning and subtle that you have to say it in French. A coup en passant in this case.

By this time you've pulled up in the driveway. Five minutes later, you are at the dining table accompanied by a dressing gown, a cup of green tea, a hand record and some random naughty snack from the cupboard. The hand diagram refreshes your memory of all the cards, and you envision the play in 6D. Let's try that spade lead again to make it declarer-independent. We win, play a H to East, cash the S (pitching C's) and ruff a S - that's one ruff. Now another H to East and a H ruff, that's two ruffs. The two top C are cashed. Next, we draw a round of trumps with the DK, very important. That leaves us here:

J
Q J
10 5
9
N
WE
S
J 10
A
Q 9 8

Bingo! With ten tricks already in the bag, the stage is set. A small D to the ace swallows up North's last trump. Now, with the lead in the East hand, the twelfth trick is the DT via a coup en passant. Fabulous stuff. A double guard squeeze, a double squeeze with an overtaking menace, and now a coup en passant. This is the hand that keeps on giving!

So, how can the defence prevent their visit to belle Paris? The first ten tricks are forced, aren't they? Or are they? The East hand does seem to require a lot of entries. One is needed to ruff a S, one to ruff a H and a third to execute the coup. Suppose one of these is removed prematurely...

A diamond lead achieves nothing. The first trick is won with DK and the play is the same otherwise. South obviously can't lead a H- that presents declarer with an extra trick and the coup en passant is not required. How about a H lead from North? Let's take away the HA at trick one and go through the play. First, the SQ is unblocked, then another H to East to play off the S honours and ruff the fourth one, as before. Well, paint my grass and call me Picasso - we have a problem!

6
J 7
Q J
K 10 5 4
A K 9
N
WE
S
J 10 5
A 3
10 3
Q
Q 9 8 6
8 6

It is easy to get to the East hand with DA to ruff the heart, but the coup then eludes us - East is an entry short. Any attempts at a sneaky club ruff are met with fire and damnation. That heart lead was fatal. 6D by West is doomed. As stated earlier, a H lead causes East no problems, hence they cannot be prevented from taking twelve tricks in diamonds.

You sit in quiet triumph, pitying the others for deserting you in the post-mortem and missing out on all the amazing scenarios. Perhaps no-one understands DF like you do. Your uncanny ability to spot a DF matrix bursting to tell a story; your worry-like desire to work through a problem until all possibilities are exhausted; your own extreme modesty when considering such things. You sigh as you contemplate that you are perhaps the single survivor of the extinction of the post-mortem as it used to be, and the heroes, and egos that passed away with it.

Found an intriguing analysis? Unsure of how DF got to a particular number of tricks? Or, , do you think DF is wrong on a hand? Please send it to me at thepabray@hotmail.com and I'll do my best to tune in to DF's special vibrations. Paul :

P.S. Some guy called Paul called me and asked me to belatedly thank Deana Wilson for supplying the photograph of the yacht for the August article, whilst he hid his guilty red face in his hands.



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