Neither vulnerable. South deals.


xQ 7 2


vK J 10 9 7

wQ 6 5 4


xJ 10 9 x8 6 5 4

uK J 10 5 4 u8 7

vA 5 4 2 vQ 8 6 3

w8 wJ 9 7


xA K 3

uA Q 9 6 3


wA K 10 3 2

The bidding:


1uPass 1NT Pass

3w Pass 4w Pass

4x Pass 6w Pass

Pass Pass

Opening lead: Jack of x

We are accustomed to having declarer’s hand controlling the play. That is usually correct. But once in a while ...

South has a powerful hand, but the poor quality of the heart suit militates against starting with a demand bid. Once South’s second suit was raised, a spade cue-bid made North decide that he held a perfect hand for partner, despite obvious wastage in diamonds, and so he jumped to six clubs.

West led the jack of spades and declarer had two sound lines, providing trumps were no worse than 3-1. One was to ruff hearts in dummy. That would succeed on the normal 4-3 distribution, but chances of a 5-2 split were better than 30 percent. The alternative was to establish dummy, possible if East held one or both of the two missing diamond honors. Odds on that were slightly better than 3-to-1.

Declarer won the opening lead in hand with the ace, drew two rounds of trumps, ending in dummy as West discarded a heart. The king of diamonds was led and run to West’s ace as declarer sluffed a heart. West persevered with the ten of spades. Declarer won with the king, drew the outstanding trump, crossed to the queen of spades and led the jack of diamonds. East covered with the queen, South ruffed, cashed the ace of hearts and entered dummy with a heart ruff to cash two winning diamonds, discarding the remaining two hearts from hand. Dummy’s last diamond was ruffed with declarer’s remaining trump for the 12th trick.

2013 Tribune Media Services

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