Games: Bridge

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"I pulled the wrong card, partner," is a frequently heard alibi. Nowadays, with bidding boxes in use, there are even more opportunities to "pull the wrong card".

Perhaps the early morning (10am) start to many of the matces in the Generali European Championships contributed but after East had opened One Diamond at one table South passed. At least, she thought that she had passed but, just as the bidding tray disappeared under the screen, she realised that she had played a "Double" card instead of a "Pass".

It was hardly a classic take-out double and matters seemed to get completely out of hand with North insisting on game and ending with South playing in Four Hearts doubled.

Yes, there were possile defences to the heart game but, in practice, two rounds of diamonds did not worry declarer. A trump to the king, the 2-2 heart division, and a well-placed queen of spades were all that were necessary for South to record an ill-deserved 790 points.

It will come as no surprise to find that this game was not reached at many tables.