Neither vulnerable, North deals
♠-A Q J 10 3
♥-A K 10
♣-J 7 5
♠-5 2 ♠-K 9 8 4
♥-6 5 4 3 ♥-8 7 2
♦-A 9 7 3 ♦-10 4
♣-8 4 3 ♣-A Q 10 2
♥-Q J 9
♦-Q J 8 6 2
♣-K 9 6
Opening lead: Five of ♥
Today’s deal is from a recent team competition. Both tables reached three no trump by South, and both declarers received an opening heart lead. They took slightly different routes from there.
Which suit should declarer try to set up — spades or diamonds? Spades seems more attractive, as it will almost always produce four tricks, and might produce five on a good day. Diamonds will never provide more than four tricks, and will need a friendly split to provide that.
At one table, declarer decided to go after spades. He won the opening heart lead in his hand and led a spade to dummy’s queen. East captured this with the king and made an excellent shift to the queen of clubs! Declarer won this with his king, but now had no chance, as the defense was set to take three clubs tricks as soon as West won his ace of diamonds. Nice shift by East!
At the other table, South also wanted to go after spades, but he threw up a smokescreen first. He won the opening lead in dummy and led the king of diamonds. West could have defeated the contract by grabbing his ace and shifting to clubs. It seemed so natural, however, to duck his ace. That would be good technique most of the time and might disrupt the communications between declarer and dummy, but not today. The king held the trick and declarer simply led the queen of spades off the table. East won with his king but South now had eight tricks and couldn’t be prevented from coming to one more minor suit trick. Making three!
— Bob Jones welcomes readers’ responses sent in care of this newspaper or to Tribune Content Agency, LLC., 16650 Westgrove Dr., Suite 175, Addison, TX 75001. E-mail responses may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
More from Jewelry
A new survey finds that consumers have doubts about the “realness” of lab-grown diamonds, while another poll found that younger …
(Updates with company and analyst comment, share price movement, details)LONDON, May 24 (Reuters) - Mining firm Petra Diamonds (Frankfurt: …