Bridge Deal of the Week (July 11 2018)

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The Auction:

West North East South
  1NT 2* Pass
2♠ Pass Pass 3
Dbl Pass Pass Pass

* Cappelleti

North started with 1NT, East overcalled 2– Cappelleti – 11 HCP, 4+ spades and 4+ hearts. South passed. West responded 2♠. North, who held four spades, passed. East passed too. South came to life and bid 3.

After a bit of thinking – as East/West had found a fit, an 8-card suit of spades, West doubled.

West led the 4. How can South win 9 tricks?

Vul: Both

Contract: 3Dbl by South.


The declarer has an 8-card suit of diamonds, but judged by the double, the diamonds are probably split 4-1 (or worse) and there is little doubt that West holds the missing honors: the KQ.

The declarer has also a loser in hearts and clubs. So the best plan is to try to limit the losers to a heart, club and two diamonds.

East played the 10 and won the trick as South ducked (trick 1). East led the K to declarer`s Ace (trick 2). As dummy was now void of hearts, South led a heart. West ruffed with the Q, South overruffed with dummy`s Ace (trick 3).

South led a spade from dummy and ruffed (trick 4), led a small club to dummy´s Ace (trick 5), led a spade from dummy and ruffed (trick 6). The declarer led the last heart, West discarded a spade and South ruffed with dummy`s last diamond (trick 7).

The declarer needed three more tricks. Dummy`s ♣K was good and the declarer held four diamonds in hand, but the K and 10 were lurking somewhere. South led the ♣K, then the ♠Q from dummy and ruffed (tricks 8, 9).

Then the declarer led the J, West rose with the K and East`s 10 dropped (trick 10). West won the next trick with the ♣J (trick 11) and led a small diamond. As South had higher trumps the last two tricks belonged to the declarer (tricks 12, 13).

  ♠ QJ74  
  ♣ AK1093  
♠ A852 Deal ♠ K10963
94 KQJ107
KQ32 10
♣ J87 ♣ Q6
  ♠ -  
  ♣ 542  

South managed to restrict losers to only three tricks. It was a good decision to duck the first hearts trick – that way the declarer retained control. The other successful move was to lead the J – if the declarer had led a small diamond, West would have probably ducked and East won the trick with the singleton 10.

North`s 1NT was bid with a light hand, but it secured the contract for North /South. No one becomes a winner in the long run without competing for part-score contracts. If North had opened with 1♣ for instance, South would have been more reluctant to show the diamonds holding only 5 HCP and it would have been probable that East /West end up playing 2♠, which might just have been made.

In this case North/South would have scored a trick with the A, ♣ AK, A, ♠Q and depending on how the hand was played, North might have scored a sixth trick by ruffing a heart lead.




Par Contract Analysis

The par contract on this deal is 3 by North/South.

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