Friday, May 31, 2013

What to Infer When Dealing a Bridge Hand

The play of each card conveys some information; and the secret of playing Bridge well lies in being able to draw inferences rapidly and correctly and in utilising the knowledge thus gained. If you simply look, in a mechanical way, at the cards as they fall without inferring what was meant by the play, you are apt to find yourself in the lead and at a complete loss as to what to do next.

The following are suggestions for inferences to be drawn by the Dealer:

What will the make probably be if you pass?
Your partner is apt to make it the suit in which you are weakest.

Does the opening lead show a long or a short suit?
If short, be on the alert to get the lead and exhaust trumps. If long, how many cards does the leader hold, and what high cards does his lead show?

Ask yourself why does the adversary discard one suit and save another?
This will aid in locating honours and in making successful finesses.

If the left-hand adversary leads through the Ace Queen suit in dummy, he probably does not hold the King and is tempting you to finesse. If he refuses to lead through the Ace Queen suit he is very likely waiting for you to up to his King.

If the make has been doubled try to infer what trump honours are in the doubling hand; this will enable you to judge as to the advisability of the trump lead.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Having a Good Memory When Playing Bridge

It is not necessary to have a fine memory in order to play Bridge well; but it does require the ability to count thirteen. If you know how many cards of a suit have been played, you soon will be able to tell what cards have been played.

Begin with one suit, preferably your own, and count each card of that suit as it is played; you will be surprised to find that you will soon notice not only where the cards of that suit are, but just what cards have been played. A little practice will enable you to do the same with all of the suits.

No matter what may be your position at the table, you may cultivate your memory by observing carefully the cards laid down by the dummy. The number of cards remaining in a suit at any stage of the play will assist you in recalling how many rounds of that suit have been played, and this will help you in recollecting what high cards were played in those rounds.

When you are dummy, and have nothing to do with the play, occupy your time and attention with a determined effort to remember each card played by your partner, the dealer. At the end of the hand see if you can recall how many of each suit he held. With a little practice you will be able to recall what his high cards were as well as the number in each suit. Memory is simply a matter of observation and practice.