Bridge Deal of the Week (June 13 2018)

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The Auction:

West North East South
    1 DBL
2 3♠ Pass 6♣
6 DBL Pass 7♣
DBL Pass Pass Pass

East opened with 1. South doubled for takeout. West supported hearts – 2. North bid 3♠ (at least 4 spades). East passed. South bid 6♣. West overcalled – 6. North doubled. East passed. South raised to 7♣. West doubled.

West led the 3. How can South win 13 tricks?

Vul: North/South

Contract: 7♣ by South



The declarer ruffed as West played the Q (trick 1). South could count on ten more tricks— eight clubs and the ♠AK. But South`s hand also contains two small spade losers. 

Of course the declarer could cross over to dummy`s hand using the only entry, the ♣Q, lead the A and discard one of the spades. But one of the spades would remain.

So South chose to run the clubs, leading first the ♣A and then the K, West discarded the 8 the second time and South discarded a spade from dummy (tricks 2, 3).  When the declarer led the ♣J, both opponents were starting to feel the squeeze and had to plan which cards to discard and what to hold close to their hearts. West discarded one more diamond, the declarer also discarded a small diamond from dummy, East discarded the 8 (trick 4).

South led the ♣10. West discarded a diamond, South another spade from dummy and East one more heart (trick 5). South led the ♣9 and discarded the ♠9 from dummy`s hand (trick 6). Both opponents pitched a heart.

South led another club and made a breakthrough. West pitched a spade –  this meant the opponents now had 4 spades left and if spades were split 3-2 initially, the ♠QJ will drop if the ♠AK were led and South`s low spades would be promoted into winners. The declarer discarded dummy`s last spade and East the 10 (trick 7).

South cashed in the last two clubs (tricks 8, 9). West discarded the J and ♠J, East a diamond and then theK. When South led the ♠ A, West`s ♠Q dropped, East followed suit (trick 10).

South cashed in the last three spades – against all odds the declarer had won 13 tricks.

  ♣ Q  
♠ QJ6 Deal ♠ 82
J83 AKQ10952
KJ10864 93
♣ 7 ♣ 42



South probably raised to 7♣ hoping that the opponents would make a sacrifice bid of 7 hearts as the vulnerability was in their favor. But instead West doubled and South had to play the grand slam in clubs.

But after all it is a better position to be the declarer with a hand which contains a 9-card suit and a 4-card suit. The decision to run all the trumps and not try to lose a spade on a diamond, proved to be a right one, and South collected 13 tricks as a reward.

Of course the contract might still have gone down, if West had chosen to hold spades, but West clung to diamonds as East kept discarding hearts – which gave no hint to his partner about the state of his other suits.

East / West would have lost four tricks playing 7. South would have cashed in the ♣A and the ♠AK, but after that West could have discarded one diamond on the ♠Q and lost only one more trick in diamonds.


Par Contract Analysis

The par contract on this deal is 7 Dbl -4 by East.

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