Saturday, October 24, 2009

Defensive hands. What was your focus ?

The king of diamond was lead and partner discouraged. What is your continuation ?
I found this hand interesting because 2 experts chose a continuation which was a "big play" and switch to the club 9. Where was their focus at the time, I don t know, but I suspect that their choice of switch was influenced more by a desire to win than the information available to them. External wide focus on the auction, alternating with internal narrow focus to assess declarer's hand. Declarer has shown spades, his partner has shown hearts, declarere therefore also has clubs and diamonds. That leaves partner with hearts. Partner will know what to do on a heart switch and the club king entry will remain in your hand. You should always punish poor bidding.

What were your focus during the bidding. Possibly on the current state of the match, maybe on the room temperature, or possibly how you had a bad week last week. Or, despite the lack of high cards in your hand, did you focus on the bidding, switching between external and internal focus to assess the possible hands types for partner and for the opposition. Partner has any points that is not in the opponents hands . He has an opening hand. Yet he did not take one bid over 1C. Easy lead club ?

I included this hand more as an illustration of how the focus can be influenced by emotions. I was given this as a problem and my choice was a diamond lead. My choice was governed by only one factor. A previous experience where my partner made a bad double, more out of frustration for being taken out of a making contract. Fear made me lead a diamond. In fact, trusting the double, I think in retrospect that the spade lead is pretty much automatic. Partner has spades and he has points. Dummy is likely short on one of our suits. Trust partner and lead a spade


  1. enjoyed the bit about wondering about the room temperature etc. when you should be looking at your hand. Will make sure to send a link to Michael :)
    Also like your comment re: hand 3 where a bad personal experience can end up coloring our objectivity and introduce a kind of laziness of "This didnt work last time so it is out this time" instead of an honest exercise of comparing the differences between the two situations objectively.