Well Well Well – The Gee Chronicles
Dec 222002

N/S Vul
Dealer: West
Lead: SJ

S A 10 5 3
H A K Q J 9 8
C A 9
S K 8 7 4
H 7
D Q 10 7 4 3 2
C 8 6
[W - E] as
S J 6
H 6 5 4 3
D 9 5
C K J 5 4 3
S Q 9 2
H 10 2
D A J 8 6
C Q 10 7 2
2 C
3 H
4 C
7 H
3 D
5 C


Some days we concentrate on Gee’s card play, others on his bidding, still others on his incomparable post mortems. Then there are those special days, when we hit the trifecta.

Gee opens 2C in second seat, and his partner puts the auction in high gear with a 3D bid on a balanced nine points and a four card suit. The STCP™ would consider 2NT, which is one reason he’s just watching the action.

Gee bids 3H, his partner 3NT. After the first positive response Gee isn’t taking no for an answer, and he launches into 4C. This, as all experience Gee-specs know, is Gerber: Gee plays Gerber directly over all notrump bids. (All notrump bids, you ask? All notrump bids.)

South, a novice in the Tao, takes 4C as clubs and raises to 5. Now our hero has a problem. Faced with an impossible response, he takes the logical course of bidding an impossible slam. Seven hearts.

There are two cards in East’s hand that give declarer a chance to make, and he leads one of them, the spade jack. (The other is the club king.) Gee plays the queen from dummy, and West can still beat the hand by ducking. Covering, however, is the normal and correct play with the spade ten hidden, and cover he does.

Declarer now has twelve tricks in the bag and great squeeze chances for the last one. Normally he would have to guess whether to play West, who obviously holds the long spades, for the club king or the diamond queen, but on the actual layout it’s easy. Declarer cashes the diamond king, plays two rounds of trump coming to dummy with the H10, cashes the diamond ace, sluffing the club loser, and ruffs a diamond. East shows out on the third diamond and it’s all over. Declarer draws trump, cashes the club ace and runs the rest of the trump, coming to this:

S 10 5 3
H 9
S 8 7 4
[W - E] as
S 6
C K J 5
S 9 2


On the last trump declarer tosses the club queen from dummy and West, needing four cards to guard against the spade and diamond threats, must throw in the towel.

Gee’s actual line is identical until trick 6. But instead of ruffing a diamond, he crosses back to his hand with the club ace, draws the rest of the trump, and plays two rounds of spades ending in dummy to kill his last entry. East of course shows out and Gee is left with a spade loser for down 1.

National politicians could learn from the way Gee handles a post mortem. He is asked why he bid 7H.

“I had a feeling that we needed a slam swing to win the match,” he replies. (This was the last hand of a team game. The score was hidden. Note his judicious choice of the word “feeling.”)

He is asked why he didn’t ruff a diamond and run his trumps. Gee disarmingly agrees that he should have ruffed a diamond, in the manner of an arsonist confessing to jaywalking. “But it doesn’t matter if I do,” he continues. “There is no squeeze.”

He is asked why he didn’t run his trumps even without ruffing a diamond, guessing whether to play West for the club king or the diamond queen. “I knew West held the diamond queen,” says Gee.

  5 Responses to “Well Well Well”


    Fair is fair. The contract can also be made on the spade 6 lead provided declarer plays the 9 from the dummy and West plays the spade king. (Only the club king allows the slam to be made with no further help from the defense.) So this slam was almost fully 25%.


    There is no need to ruff a diamond if you guess which minor threat west holds: Play for double squeeze.


    Upon further review I have concluded that I was right, for once, the first time. On a low spade lead declarer cannot make whether West covers or not.


      Yes he can make on a cover…just play king of diamonds, run the trumps, cash the CA, cross to dummy with a spade and play the ace of diamonds, pitching your club. You know how T3 of spades opposite the 2, and the jack of diamonds in dummy. West was squeezed.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>