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BRIDGE



Published: Thu, February 3, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.


Neither vulnerable. West deals.
NORTH
x -K 9 5 3
u -A K 10 8
v -A K 2
w -10 3
WEST EAST
x 8 4 x A Q J
u J 7 4 u Q 9 6 5
v Q 10 8 5 4 v 7 6 3
w 9 8 5 w K Q J
SOUTH
x 10 7 6 2
u 3 2
v J 9
w A 7 6 4 2
The bidding:
WEST NORTH EAST SOUTH
Pass 1v vbl 1x
Pass 4x Pass Pass
Pass
Opening lead: Four of u
If you were impressed by the declarer play of the IBPA Hand of the Year, you will be overwhelmed by this deal, awarded the prize for the best hand played by a junior. On this deal from the European Junior Team Championship, South was Israel's Gilad Ofir.
North certainly came to the event to bid. He judged his all-prime hand as being too strong to open one no trump. Most players holding his six-loser hand would have been content to jump to three spades in response to partner's one-spade takeout. Four spades was an endorsement of his partner's dummy play.
A spade lead would have given declarer no chance, but West cannot be faulted for leading a heart on this auction. Declarer won with the king of hearts, cashed the ace and ruffed a heart. Dummy was re-entered with the king of diamonds and the remaining heart was ruffed with the ten. A diamond to the ace provided the entry for a diamond ruff.
Reading the hand perfectly, declarer exited with a club that East was forced to win. The defender could do no better than return a club. Declarer won with the ace and ruffed a club in dummy for his ninth trick. With North and East both down to nothing but three trumps, declarer led a low trump from the table, forcing East to win, thereby promoting the king of spades to the fulfilling trick!
& copy; 2005 Tribune Media Services


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