THE MOONRAKER HAND

 

Ian Fleming used the Duke of Cumberland hand  to exercise his imagination when writing Moonraker (1955). Facing his old enemy Sir Hugo Drax, Bond rigs a pack of cards beforehand and then substitutes the pack when it is his deal. He warns his partner, `M', that this is the crucial deal by a prearranged signal (bringing out a handkerchief).

It is the fourth rubber. Bond and his partner lead two to one, but the stakes are climbing and Bond is feigning drunkenness from the champagne. Naturally Drax fancies his chances with a `Duke of Cumberland' powerhouse and raises the stakes still higher. The `drunken' Bond agrees the bet and the trap is set.

Dealer South.

 

North Dealer

10 9 8 7

 

 

 

Neither Vulnerable

 6 5 4 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 7 6 5 3 2

 

 

 

 

 

N

 

 

 6 5 4 3 2

 

 

 A  K Q J

 10 9 8 7 2

 

W                          E

 A K Q J

 J 10 9

 

 

 A K

 

 

 

 K J 9

 

 

 

S

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q 8 7 6 5 4 3 2  

 

 

 

 

 A Q 10 8 4

 

 

                           

W

N

E

S

Meyer

M

Drax

James Bond

 

 

 

7

NO

NO

Double

Redouble

NO

NO

NO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

West led J, which was ruffed in dummy. Then followed the standard sequence of finessing the clubs and ruffing the diamonds. By the third round, all the remaining diamonds were winners.

The weakness in Fleming's construction is that Drax can still bid Seven Spades, which is two off at worst. 

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