Bridge Deal of the Week (April 25 2018)

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The Auction:

West   North   East   South
pass     2♠       pass    4♠
all pass

You are South on this deal in a pair event, where the objective is to take as many tricks as possible, playing against expert opponents. West leads the 3, you call for dummy's 10 and ruff East's A. While there are several reasonable lines of play at this stage, say you choose to cash the ♠A and play a spade towards dummy's queen, which wins as East discard a heart. When you run the Q, West follows with the 10. Plan the rest of the play.


After West follows with the 10 when you run the Q, the automatic continuation is to run the J. If you do so, the roof caves in, for West unexpectedly wins the K, cashes the ♠K and exits with yet another king, the K to lock you in hand. Unable to take club finesse anymore, you can take no more than ten tricks.

Once the Q wins, a little foresight will point out that the winning play is to play a diamond to the nine! As the cards lie, West will win the K, but you have the J as a dummy entry to take the club finesse. If the 10 is indeed a singleton, then whether West ruffs in or not, you can arrange to ruff a diamond in dummy to establish the fifth diamond as a winner, and in the process gain an entry to dummy to take the club finesse. Furthermore, if the 10 is singleton, you need to ruff a diamond in dummy even if you play the J from dummy, so playing a diamond to the nine is a no-risk play. Finally, if West played the 10 holding a doubleton, playing a diamond to the 9 is once again equivalent to running the J.

 K82 Deal  6
 KJ3  A98765
 K10  872
 108732  K96

Par Contract Analysis

The par contract on this deal is 5♠ by North-South.

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