North-South vulnerable, East deals.



uK Q 10 5 2

vK 3

w10 9 7 4 3


x9 8 5 2 x4

u9 6 3 uA J 8 4

vA Q 9 6 2 vJ 7 4

w5 wA K Q 8 2


xA K Q J 10 6 3


v10 8 5

wJ 6

The bidding:


2w- 2x Pass 3u

Pass 3x All pass

-11-15 with six clubs, or five clubs and a four-card major

Opening lead: Five of w

East-West were playing the Precision System, where a one-club opening shows a hand of any distribution with 16 or more points. A two-club opening, not needed for strong hands, is used as described above.

East won the opening club lead with the queen and continued with the ace. When South showed up with a second club, West had a very good idea about the distribution. East, with only five clubs, had to have a four-card major -- surely hearts on this deal. Should declarer have six spades and four diamonds, he would not be able to take nine tricks. The danger was that declarer held seven spades and three diamonds. South might be able to set up a heart winner in dummy and then lead toward the king of diamonds for an entry to it. What could West do?

Should West leave East on lead, East would surely continue clubs in the hope of promoting a trump trick in the West hand. West knew that his trumps weren’t good enough for that defense to work unless East held a singleton spade honor. Why take that chance, thought West, who knew exactly what to do to defeat the contract. West ruffed his partner’s ace of clubs at trick two and shifted to a low diamond! Dummy’s king won this trick, and the king of hearts was led from dummy. East won with his ace and led a diamond to West. West shifted to the nine of spades and the contract was sunk. Nice defense!

2016 Tribune Content Agency

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