Maybe you are the rare person who honestly belongs in that vastly overcrowded army of players who claim that they never "get the cards." There is no better way to find out—and prove forevermore that fate has it in for you—than by tackling the hands below. To rate yourself, a score of 82 to 90 is master, 72 to 81 top rate, 54 to 71 good, 36 to 53 average. If you score less, keep talking but never, never let anybody kibitz as you work a quiz. For the answers, turn the page. None of the hands is vulnerable unless otherwise noted. They pose a real test even for experts.

1 As South you hold:

[King of Hearts]
[Queen of Hearts]
[8 of Hearts]
[Ace of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[8 of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

S

1[Spade]
?

W
2[Club]

N
PASS

E
PASS

What do you bid now?

2 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[King of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[3 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[King of Hearts]
[7 of Hearts]
[8 of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]
[3 of Clubs]
[2 of Clubs]
[7 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

W

1[Diamond]
PASS

N

PASS
2[Heart]

E

1NT
PASS

S

PASS
?

What do you bid now?

3 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[3 of Spades]
[4 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[Queen of Clubs]
[10 of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]
[9 of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]

N

1[Club]
3[Diamond]

E

PASS
PASS

S

1[Diamond]
?

W
1[Spade]

What do you bid now?

4 As South you hold:

[King of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[7 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]
[7 of Clubs]
[4 of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]

N

1[Club]
1[Spade]

E

PASS
PASS

S

1[Heart]
?

W
PASS

What do you bid know?

5 Both sides vulnerable. As South you hold:

[10 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[Jack of Hearts]
[10 of Hearts]
[7 of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[King of Clubs]
[Queen of Clubs]
[9 of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]

W
3[Heart]

N
3[Spade]

E
DBL

S
?

What do you bid?

6 As South you hold:

[10 of Spades]
[3 of Spades]
[8 of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[6 of Clubs]
[4 of Clubs]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]

E

1[Heart]
PASS

S

2[Diamond]
?

W
PASS

N
2NT

What do bid now?

7 As South you hold:

[9 of Spades]
[7 of Spades]
[7 of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[King of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]
[3 of Clubs]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[9 of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

N
1[Spade]

E
2[Diamond]

S
?

W

What do you bid?

8 As South you hold:

[King of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[King of Hearts]
[10 of Hearts]
[6 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[King of Clubs]
[Queen of Clubs]
[10 of Clubs]
[4 of Clubs]

N

1[Spade]
4[Club]
5[Heart]

E

PASS
PASS
PASS

S

3[Spade]
5[Club]
?

W

PASS
PASS

What do you bid now?

9 As South you hold:

[King of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[10 of Hearts]
[Ace of Clubs]
[King of Clubs]
[Jack of Clubs]
[6 of Clubs]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

N

PASS
2[Diamond]

E

1[Heart]
PASS

S

DBL
?

W

PASS

What do you bid now?

10 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[8 of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[9 of Hearts]
[8 of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

N

1[Heart]
2[Heart]

E

PASS
PASS

S

1[Spades]
?

W
PASS

What do you bid now?

11 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[4 of Hearts]
[10 of Clubs]
[7 of Clubs]
[4 of Clubs]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]

N
1[Heart]

E
2[Club]

S
?

W

What do you bid?

12 As South you hold:

[King of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[Jack of Hearts]
[8 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[Ace of Clubs]
[Jack of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[8 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]

S

1NT
?

W
PASS

N
2NT

E
3[Spade]

What do you bid now?

13 As South you hold:

[Jack of Hearts]
[10 of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[Ace of Spades]
[10 of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[3 of Spades]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[9 of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]

S

1[Diamond]
?

W
PASS

N
1[Heart]

E
PASS

What do you bid now?

14 As South you hold:

[Jack of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[Queen of Hearts]
[6 of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[7 of Clubs]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]

N
1[Club]

E
PASS

S
?

W

What do you bid?

15 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[King of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[8 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[Jack of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[Queen of Clubs]
[9 of Clubs]
[Queen of Diamonds]

S

1[Spade]
2[Heart]
?

W

PASS
PASS

N

2[Club]
3[Club]

E

PASS
PASS

What do you bid now?

16 As South you hold:

[King of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[10 of Spades]
[8 of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[King of Hearts]
[Queen of Hearts]
[King of Clubs]
[Queen of Clubs]
[10 of Diamonds]

N
1[Club]

E
PASS

S
?

W

What do you bid?

17 As South you hold:

[Ace of Spades]
[King of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[4 of Hearts]
[7 of Clubs]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[Jack of Diamonds]

E
1[Heart]

S
?

W

N

What do you bid?

18 As South you hold:

[Queen of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[King of Hearts]
[7 of Hearts]
[6 of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[Ace of Clubs]
[King of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]

S

1[Heart]
3[Diamond]
?

W

PASS
PASS

N

1[Spade]
3NT

E

PASS
PASS

What do you bid now?

HERE ARE THE ANSWERS

1

Three clubs 5 points
Three spades 4 points
Four spades 2 points
Double 1 point

This hand possesses enormous offensive possibilities despite partner's failure to take action on the first round. It is true that a cue bid is always very drastic, but partner should recall that in the first instance you did not open with a demand bid of two spades. A jump rebid in spades is acceptable, but the cue bid is preferred because of your tolerance for a red-suit contract, should partner have some length in either of those suits. A reopening double is not recommended, first, because of its slight inadequacy and, second, because you are not prepared for a penalty pass.

2

Pass 5 points
Two spades 2 points
Three hearts 1 points

Partner is not attempting to go places. He is merely trying to prevent the adversaries from running off with a cheap part score. If he had even the mildest ambitions he would have entered the auction immediately over the opening bid of one diamond, at which point it would have been easy for him to compete. Therefore, refrain from bidding two spades, a contract which partner may not be prepared to play.

3

Three spades 5 points
Five diamonds 3 points
Three no trump 2 points
Four diamonds 1 point

The three-spade call is a cue bid and serves a dual purpose. It may enable partner to contract for three no trump, if that happens to be the best contract, or it may permit him to think in terms of a slam if his hand is suited for the purpose. Your partner has opened the bidding and jumped. Your hand is not far from the equivalent of an opening bid in strength. The ingredients of a slam are therefore present. Your queen in partner's long club suit may be enormously valuable. So, slam possibilities are not remote.

4

Two spades 5 points
Two no trump 3 points
Two hearts 2 points
One no trump 1 point

While it is tempting to make the next bid in no trump, there is, unfortunately, no convenient no-trump bid available, for the hand is a shade too good for the rebid of one no trump, and yet it is not quite strong enough for a jump to two no trump, which is forcing to game. We suggest a raise to two spades, though normally we avoid doing this with only three trumps when partner presumably has a four-card suit. If partner rebids, we will then try three no trump on the next round.

5

Redouble 5 points
Pass 3 points
Three no trump 1 point

This will be an adequate dummy for a vulnerable player who was willing to undertake a nine-trick commitment. East has evidently overestimated the strength of his partner's hand and even though spades break badly I would feel confident of fulfilling the contract. There is the added advantage that the redouble may induce West, who has admitted that he has not a strong hand, to run to four hearts.

6

Three no trump 5 points
Four diamonds 1 point

Your partner is behaving in a most praiseworthy manner and your appreciation of his efforts should be manifested by a raise to three no trump. You can contribute seven tricks to the cause, and it would be strange indeed if partner could not help along with two, in view of the fact that he acted without your solicitation. If your answer was three diamonds or, for that matter, any number of diamonds, you may hide your blushes in the nearest corner.

7

Pass 5 points
Anything else 0

Discretion calls for a pass. If there were any assurance that two diamonds would be the final contract, a resounding double would be in order. But it is reasonable to expect that if you doubled, there would be a rescue bid, and that your partner, looking to you for certain high-card values, would take some step distasteful to you, such as doubling the rescue. You would not contribute very much to the defeat of that other contract.

8

Seven spades 5 points
Six diamonds 3 points
Six hearts 2 points
Six spades 1 point

On the basis of your partner's strong bidding there can be little doubt that the trump suit is solid. It will be observed that North bypassed an easy chance to show the ace of diamonds so that it may be assumed that he hasn't got that card. This makes it all the more convincing that you are not faced with a trump loser. So a grand-slam bid in spades is quite in order.

9

Pass 5 points
Three diamonds 2 points
Two spades or two no trump 1 point

There is no reason to foresee game possibilities, and there is no action you can take at this point that is not fraught with danger. Partner has been brought into the auction, perhaps much against his will, and he may have little or nothing. A bid of two spades would be bad tactics, and a call of two no trump would be the act of a man who looks upon currency with complete disdain.

10

Three diamonds 5 points
Three hearts 3 points
Three spades 2 points

Three diamonds is a one-round force, and since the picture is not quite clear this temporizing bid is in order. If partner again rebids his suit, you can raise it with assurance. The best alternate call for you is a raise in hearts. The ragged nature of your spade suit virtually precludes a jump rebid in that suit.

11

Double 5 points
Pass 2 points

We would assess a special demerit for bidding two spades. Your hand does not justify taking this dangerous action. This bid would be forcing for one round and would probably result in a rebid of three hearts by partner. If you are able to extricate yourself from that predicament, you have greater resourcefulness than I have. I think it is safe to assume that you can win three or four tricks against the club declaration which, added to the three the opening bidder is expected to win, should produce a sizable profit. If opener happens to have a good hand the yield may even run into four figures, and so this is a clear-cut penalty double.

12

Double 5 points
Pass 2 points
Three no trump 1 point

Strike while the iron is hot. This is one double that East should long remember! Do not aim for anything so trivial as a game when a possible 1,100-point plum is there for the picking.

13

one spade 5 points
Two hearts 3 points
Two diamonds or three diamonds 1 points

The several possible choices include rebidding diamonds and supporting hearts. But the hand is too strong for a mere two-diamond rebid, and not quite strong enough for a jump to three diamonds, so that the choice narrows down. While the suggested bid of one spade is not forcing, in these circumstances partner will exert every effort to speak again, and a better idea of the nature of his hand may be obtained from his next move.

14

One diamond 5 points
One heart 3 points
One spade 2 points
Pass 1 point

We are disinclined to pass partner out in a bid of one club where there is any reasonable excuse for bidding. Partner may have hearts or spades as his second suit, and a better result will be obtained if he is given the chance to show it. A one-diamond response allows for this contingency. The worst possible bid by you would be one no trump. It is better to pass, and it is for this reason that 1 point is awarded to that call.

15

Four clubs 5 points
Three spades 2 points
Three spades 2 points
Five clubs 1 points

Our choice is four clubs. Partner must have a very substantial suit to insist upon it in the face of your showing a major two-suiter. A rebid of three hearts might tend to make partner lose interest since it would merely sound like an effort on your part to force him to show a preference, which he has already refused to do. A bid of four clubs will surely identify your singleton diamond and have the effect of urging partner on to bigger things.

16

Four no trump 5 points
Two spades 3 points
One spade 1 points

This is the ideal type of hand for the Blackwood Convention since the only losers are aces. If partner happens to have four aces, the grand slam is easy. It he has three, you contract for a small slam. If he has only two, you stop at five spades and should be safe. If he has only one, it is high time you drew him aside for an intimate little chat.

17

Two hearts 5 points
Five spades 4 points
Four no trump 1 point

Your first duty is to make a bid which is forcing to game. The only one available is a cue bid in the opponents' suit. Regardless of partner's response, you will then embark on a Blackwood bid to determine the number of aces he holds. A direct overcall of five spades might suggest itself, but this may not be interpreted clearly by partner. An immediate four no-trump bid might likewise be misunderstood. The recommended method is surer.

18

Pass 5 points
Four no trump 1 point

Any further conversation by you would be mere filibustering. On the basis of a one-over-one response you have insisted upon a game and partner has shown no enthusiasm. For a mathematical demonstration, let us point out that North may have as little as six points while you have but 22, and no fit has been established. You are therefore not in slam territory.

PHOTO
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)