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Both vulnerable. North deals.



Published: Wed, September 6, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



Both vulnerable. North deals.

NORTH

K 9 3

K Q 4 3

Q 5

K 7 4 2

WEST EAST

Q 8 7 6 5 2 10

6 2 10 5

8 4 A K 10 9 7 6

J 9 3 A 10 8 6

SOUTH

A J 4

A J 9 8 7

J 3 2

Q 5

The bidding:

NORTH EAST SOUTH WEST

1 1 1 Pass

2 3 4 Pass

Pass Pass

Opening lead: Eight of

Before committing yourself to a line, try to find out as much as possible about the distribution. Consider this deal.

There was little to the auction. With an opening bid facing an opener, it was easy to get to four hearts once the major-suit fit was located.

West led the eight of diamonds. East cashed the ace and king of the suit and continued with 10. West ruffed and declarer overruffed in dummy and drew trumps in two rounds with the ace and king. Since there was no way to avoid losing a club trick, it seems that the fate of the hand hinges on the spade finesse. However, if declarer commits to that line early, he will be defeated.

Correct technique is for declarer to continue by leading a low club from the table. East must follow low or else set up an extra trick in the suit. When the queen wins, South exits with a club. West must play the nine and declarer ducks in dummy. The defender exits with the jack of clubs, declarer still following with dummy's low card, and East produces the 10 as declarer ruffs.

Since East must have the ace of clubs for his bidding and from the play, East is known to have started with six diamonds, four clubs and two hearts, hence only one spade. The contract can only succeed if that spade is either the 10 or the queen. Declarer cashes the ace of spades and, when East produces the 10, continues by leading the jack. If West ducks, the knave is run. When East covers, declarer wins with dummy's king and the nine is the fulfilling trick.

& copy; 2006 Tribune Media Services

Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.




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