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bridge



Published: Fri, April 27, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.

bridge

Neither vulnerable. South deals.

NORTH

xK 5 4

uA J 9 3 2

v10 9

wQ 3 2

WEST EAST

xA 9 8 6 xQ 3 2

u10 4 u7 6 5

vA 6 4 2 vQ J 8 7 5

w9 7 6 w8 5

SOUTH

xJ 10 7

uK Q 8

vK 3

wA K J 10 4

The bidding:

SOUTH WEST NORTH EAST

1w Pass 1u Pass

2NT Pass 3NT Pass

Pass Pass

Opening lead: ?

This is a simple question to answer. “Lead a major before a minor with two four-card suits of relatively equal strength.” Consider this deal from Eddie Kantar’s excellent series “Thinking Bridge,” for players anxious to improve their game.

“As South, your hand should be revalued to 18 points given the strong five-card suit. Balanced hands with 17 high-card points and a strong five-card suit are too strong to open one no trump. Rather open the five-card suit, intending to jump in notrump next.

“As North, raise to three no trump with balanced distribution rather than rebid the five-card heart suit. It is an exception to rebid a five-card suit in this sequence. Normally the rebid shows a six-card suit. If the suit is exceptionally strong (K Q J 10 x) it can be treated as a six-card suit. There are checkback methods available for North to find out if you have three hearts.

“As East, if declarer plays low from dummy at trick one, win the queen and shift to the queen of diamonds. Partner is marked with four spades, probably including the ace, which means the most your side can get is three spade tricks if you return the suit. Partner must have some outside honor card and your best chance is to hope it is the ace of diamonds. If declarer started with 17 HCP, partner could have the ace of diamonds.

“As South, you have 10 sure tricks between clubs and hearts once you get in, and you can’t stand a diamond shift from East, so go up with the king of spades to reduce the chance of East getting in.”

For more information about “Thinking Bridge” and other Kantar writings, go to www.kantarbridge.com.

2012 Tribune Media Services


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