Excitement was high the other night when the local club staged its quarterly Club Championship. There were many contenders that evening including Red Dyeman, Queenie Hartz, Ace Banghor, and Jack Leeder. Yet somehow the kibitzers all knew it would come down to Lucky Archie versus Poor Frank. They played each other on the last round and the final board decided that evening’s outcome:
Dealer: West North West North East South Vulnerable: NS ♠ AQ32 1♦ 2♦ Pass 2♠ ♥ A109876 Pass 4♠ Pass ♦ A5 Dbl. All pass. ♣ A West (L.A.) East ♠ K1098 ♠ 65 ♥ KQJ ♥ 42 ♦ K97 ♦ Q8432 ♣ Q102 ♣ 9764 South (Poor Frank) ♠ J74 ♥ 53 ♦ J106 ♣ KJ853
In the auction, 2♦ showed 10 cards in the majors, although when this bid is used, the suits are normally divided 5-5. North’s final bid of 4♠ was surely an overbid, but undoubtedly showed that player’s confidence in Poor Frank’s ability to stroke the dummy. Lucky Archie tossed the double card so hard onto the table that he almost broke it.
“You are in one unmakeable game,” he told Poor Frank as he placed the king of hearts on the table.
Poor Frank ducked the lead and Archie switched to a low diamond. Declarer won the ace, cashed the ace of clubs and the ace of hearts, then ruffed a heart with the jack of spades. Next came the king of clubs, dummy’s low diamond disappearing on this card.
Poor Frank advanced a trump and inserted the queen when Archie played low. He cashed the ace of trumps and began running the hearts. Lucky Archie was helpless. He could take no more than two high trumps, but could not prevent Poor Frank from making this doubled vulnerable game.
“I think you meant to say that I was in an unbeatable game, Archie,” Poor Frank said to his rival as he smiled and graciously accepted the accolades of the local bridge buffs.