The Adventures of Poor Frank, Part CIII: Fit to Win
By Ray Adams
The latest chapter in Poor Frank’s ongoing rivalry with Lucky Archie proved to be very exciting. It all came down to who was fit to win:
This board occurred on the last round and, since Poor Frank and Lucky Archie were within half a point of one another, it would be the deciding factor in who won that evening’s duplicate. Poor Frank ended up in five hearts doubled on the first auction after he overcalled one heart. Lucky Archie, on the other hand, became declarer in five diamonds doubled after overcalling one diamond.
The kibitzers had a field day with this hand, debating whether a 5-4 fit was better than a 6-3 fit. Although there were supporters of both sides, the majority finally sided with the 5-4 fit, as the side 6-3 suit offered more opportunity for sluffing losers. One thing they failed to consider, however, is that when declarer has a 6-5 hand, there are few side losers.
When Poor Frank played the hand, West cashed the ace of clubs and shifted to a spade, won by East. East had an easy exit in spades, ruffed by declarer. However, Poor Frank soon found he had no way to get to dummy to take the heart finesse. Eventually, he banged down the ace of hearts and conceded a heart to East for down one and minus 100.
Lucky Archie, on the other hand, was in five diamonds doubled. He banged down the ace and king of diamonds, happy to see the suit split 2-2. He led a diamond to dummy’s jack and advanced the queen of hearts. Before long, he was writing plus 550 in his scorecard.
Shortly after hearing his name read as that evening’s winner, Lucky Archie came up to Poor Frank and said, “You’ve got to learn to choose the right fit, Frankie baby.”
At last report, Poor Frank was still having fits over that remark.