Friday, September 5, 2008

Bridge Master 2000

Bridge Master 2000 is, in my opinion, the best bridge program out there. It's a declarer play program, with dozens of preloaded hands. There are five skill levels. Level One is challenging for a novice; any reader of this site should breeze through them. Level Three should be tough for most players. Level Five is miserably hard... these are meant to trouble even World Champions. I'll put my favorite Level Five hand at the end of this article.

Bridge Base Online offers six sample deals at each of the five Levels. Try it for yourself! Log in to BBO, and click on "Other Bridge Activities". Near the bottom of the list is Bridge Master 2000. Click your preferred level and try the sample hands! You can purchase individual sets of hands on Bridge Base for $10.00 per 30 hands, and you can buy the whole program here for $59.95. The price tag may look steep, but I promise it's worth it. My suggestion would be to play the sample hands on BBO and find your level, then buy two sets of that level and one of the level above that. Then practice!

These hands are set up to reward the best lines of play. If you play it and fail, you can try again as many times as you need. Be warned-- the lie of the cards that wreck your first try may not be the same lie when you try again! If you try a different sub-par line of play, you'll get punished for that too.

My favorite deal from the samples on BBO is Level Five, deal 4:

Vul: None
Scoring: Rubber

Once South finds out that North holds the black aces, he bounces into 7D. The king of spades is led, and it's your play. I'll post the full play in the Comments.

1 comment:

McKenzie said...

So South should start by winning the spade (of course), drawing trump, and cashing AKQ of hearts. If hearts are 3-3, thirteen tricks are easy - six diamonds, four hearts, two clubs and a spade. If East had the heart length, a double squeeze (my favorite!) comes to fruition. When you lead out all your trumps, West has to hold on to the king of spades, and East has to hold on to the long hearts, so neither can guard the club suit.

As it is, West has the long hearts, so you have to play for a guard squeeze, hoping for split honors in clubs. When you run all your trumps, lefty is forced to hang on to the king of spades and the 13th heart--therefore only one club (hopefully the queen or jack). Lead a club to the board, dropping LHO's honor, and play a club to the ten on the way back!

Just another grand slam on a finesse...