MR. GOREN'S CHRISTMAS QUIZ

December 19, 1966

By now you have considered the new safety features in the 1967 cars, but how about adding some safety features to your 1967 cards? Though I am a firm believer in aggressive bridge, lately I have noticed a trend toward too much boldness, so here is a safety lecture. The problems generally call for the most careful approach, but that is not always the lowest possible bid. If you score 34 or less, increase your insurance; 35 to 49 and you are safe in most games; 50 or more and your opponents should check their own coverage against losses.

For all hands, neither side vulnerable

1 As South you hold:

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

SOUTH

PASS
2 [Heart]
?

WEST

PASS
PASS

NORTH

1 [Heart]
3 [Club]

EAST

PASS
PASS

What do you bid now?

2 As South you hold:

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

NORTH

1 [Spade]
3 [Spade]
4 [Heart]

EAST

PASS
PASS
PASS

SOUTH

2 [Club]
3 N.T.
?

WEST

2 [Diamond]
PASS

What do you bid now?

3 As South you hold:

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

SOUTH

1 [Club]
?

WEST
PASS

NORTH
2 [Club]

EAST
PASS

What do you bid now?

4 As South you hold:

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

NORTH

1 [Spade]
4 [Spade]

EAST

2 [Heart]
5 [Heart]

SOUTH

2 [Spade]
?

WEST
3 [Heart]

What do you bid now?

5 As South you hold:

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

WEST
1 [Diamond]

NORTH
DOUBLE

EAST
PASS

SOUTH
?

What do you bid?

6 As South you hold:

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

NORTH
1 [Spade]

EAST
2 [Club]

SOUTH
?

WEST

What do you bid?

7 As South you hold:

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

NORTH
1 [Heart]

EAST
2 [Diamond]

SOUTH
?

WEST

What do you bid?

8 As South you hold:

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

WEST
3 [Diamond]

NORTH
3 [Heart]

EAST
5 [Diamond]

SOUTH
?

What do you bid?

9 As South you hold:

[10 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[9 of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[8 of Clubs]
[7 of Clubs]
[3 of Clubs]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

NORTH
3 [Diamond]

EAST
PASS

SOUTH
?

WEST

What do you bid?

10 As South you hold:

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

NORTH

1 [Club]
PASS

EAST

PASS
3 [Heart]

SOUTH

2 [Club]
?

WEST
3 [Club]

What do you bid now?

11

NORTH

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

SOUTH

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

SOUTH

2 [Club]
3 [Club]
4 [Diamond]
6 [Club]

WEST

2 [Spade]
PASS
PASS
PASS

NORTH

PASS
3 N.T.
5 [Club]
PASS

EAST

PASS
PASS
PASS
PASS

West makes an opening lead of a small diamond against South's six club contract. How should you now plan the play?

12

NORTH

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

SOUTH

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

SOUTH

2 [Club*]
3 N.T.†

WEST

PASS
PASS

NORTH

2 [Diamond]
PASS

EAST

PASS
PASS

*Artificial; forcing
†27-28 points; balanced hand

West leads the 6 of spades against South's three-no-trump contract, East playing the king. Assuming that the lead was not unusual, how should you proceed?

13

NORTH

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

SOUTH

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

SOUTH

2 N.T.
PASS

WEST

PASS
PASS

NORTH
3 N.T.

EAST
PASS

West opens with the six of spades against South's three-no-trump contract. What is the safest way for you to proceed?

14

NORTH

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

SOUTH

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

WEST

3 [Spade]
PASS
PASS

NORTH

PASS
5 [Diamond]

EAST

PASS
PASS

SOUTH

4 [Diamond]
PASS

West leads the queen of spades against South's five diamonds, East following low. You win and play a trump to dummy, East showing out. The king of heart lead is covered by East's ace. How should you continue?

WERE YOU BOLD ENOUGH TO DISCOVER THESE SAFE SOLUTIONS?

1

3 DIAMONDS-5 PTS.
4 CLUBS OR 4 HEARTS-3 PTS.
3 HEARTS-1 PT.

You have maximum values for your previous raise but do not yet know the purpose of partner's club bid. Three diamonds shows your ace, shows diamond stoppers if partner wants to try no trump and paves the way for a club raise later if it turns out that partner is slam-minded. A club raise now is premature, but superior to an inadequate return to three hearts.

2

4 SPADES-5 PTS.
PASS-2 PTS.

Partner has shown at least six spades-possibly seven-and only four hearts. He will be much better able to withstand diamond forces if he is in his longer suit.

3

PASS-5 PTS.
2 NO TRUMP-2 PTS.
2 HEARTS OR 2 SPADES-1 PT.

Partner has indicated a minimum hand with at least four clubs. There is no need to look around for a better spot and considerable danger in trying to do so.

4

5 SPADES-5 PTS.
PASS-2 PTS.
DOUBLE-1 PT.

Perhaps you won't make five spades, but you have no assurance that the opponents won't make five hearts. Further, there is considerable hope that they may take a save—perhaps a phantom save—at six hearts. Pass earns points because partner may have some clear-cut action that he can take. Double wins a point because it is so much better than something unthinkable such as six spades or six diamonds

5

1 HEART-5 PTS.
1 NO TRUMP-2 PTS.
PASS-0 PTS.

Since one no trump promises about eight points, it conveys a wrong message to partner but gets some credit because it might conceivably work out. A pass is inconceivable, since you have no basis for hoping to set one diamond doubled. As a result, the top awards go to the takeout bid in your cheapest three-card suit.

6

PASS-5 PTS.
DOUBLE-1 PT.

Doubles of low-level contracts should be avoided on hands containing no strength outside the opponent's bid suit. If West rescues and partner doubles a two-heart bid, for example, you have nothing whatever to contribute to the defense. The pass is not only safe—it may win everything if partner can reopen with a double.

7

2 HEARTS-5 PTS.
3 HEARTS-3 PTS.
3 CLUBS-1 PT.

The free raise denotes a fairly good hand. Had East passed, a two-club bid followed by a heart raise would properly depict your strength, but you cannot now safely force partner to rebid at the three level and then leave yourself wondering whether or not to go on to game. Three hearts gets a generous award because it is a safer kind of bravery, assuming you are playing this bid as some do, to show limited strength

8

6 HEARTS-5 PTS.
5 HEARTS-3 PTS.
DOUBLE-1 PT.

You can't play them safe when the odds are so heavily in favor of making a slam or of pushing the opponents into a save at the grand-slam level. Partner is marked with no more than one diamond. The lesser awards are in recognition of the holiday season.

9

5 DIAMONDS-5 PTS.
4 DIAMONDS-3 PTS.
3 HEARTS-2 PTS.
3 SPADES-1 PT.
PASS-0 PTS.

Safe bidding does not mean trying to let the cheapest bid do the job. Partner has preempted and you have only one defensive trick. A lot of spades are missing. If you pass, West will certainly take some action, and East-West might even make six spades. The safest tactic is to use up the most space by blasting into five diamonds. Four diamonds is at least a step in the right direction. Three hearts, if partner has a singleton, may help you on defense. Even a psychic spade bid is better than a craven pass

10

3 NO TRUMP-5 PTS.
DOUBLE-3 PTS.
4 CLUBS-1 PT.

The bidding indicates that even if partner has opened a skimpy three-card suit, any missing clubs will be in the East hand and therefore finessable. So nine tricks in no trump becomes a reasonable proposition and gets the top award. If you decided to double three hearts you should be headed for a profitable penalty bonus. The point for four clubs is a sop—to those who stayed out of an unmakable five-club contract.

ANSWERS TO PLAYING PROBLEMS

11
Did you win the diamond king, lead to the diamond ace and ruff a third diamond low, planning to trump your fourth with dummy's 10? Take 1 point for reckless courage. Were you more cautious, spending the 10 of clubs to ruff the third diamond lead, thus preventing an overruff and a trump return? Take 2 points for discretion. But if you won the diamond king, surrendered the second diamond trick—thus ensuring that your ace would not be trumped—and later ruffed your remaining small diamond with dummy's 10 of clubs, you made the slam against West's singleton diamond, and thereby win the Goren safety medal for 1966, and 5 points to boot.

12

You earn 1 point if you won the spade, cashed your clubs and hearts, led ace and another diamond and found West with the diamond king. Two points for caution if you ducked the first spade, took the second, played as above and found East with the diamond king and no more spades.

Five points for mastery if you took the second spade, cashed your club and heart winners and then led the jack of spades, putting West in with his marked queen. West may win three spade tricks, but his next lead gives you your ninth trick.

13
Two points for luck if you won the spade in dummy, played a heart to your 10 and found East with the queen. But hold it: subtract 1 point because 50% of the time West will have the heart queen. If so, he shifts to a diamond, the defenders win the next heart and lead a second diamond and your only remaining entry to dummy is knocked out before you can cash the 9 of hearts. Take 5, and a sure game, if you won the first spade in your hand and led a heart, keening two reentries to dummy. Make it 6 points if your first lead was the heart king—the bonus being for the occasional time you can drop a lone queen.

14
Take 1 point for the probability that nothing bad will happen and that you'll usually make six by ruffing, leading to dummy's remaining high diamond and taking a spade discard on a high heart. But to win the 5 for safety you must allow for the possibility that East holds eight hearts, which is not impossible since West is already marked with seven spades and three diamonds. If this is the case West can overruff put his partner in with the king of spades and collect another heart ruff with his remaining high trump. So you must dump your losing spade under East's heart ace. West can ruff one heart, but cannot put partner in to get a second ruff.

ILLUSTRATION

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)