Bridge Hand Of The Week

Insurance

Feb 27, 2017
Dlr: West Vul: Both
16 6
2 K 3 A K 7 6 A Q 8 7 5 3

K Q J 10 8 7 4 3 8 5 5 3 9
WestPass All Pass
North1
EastPass
South4

Against your 4 contract, West leads the Q. You cover with the king, which loses to the ace. Another heart puts West back on lead and he exits with the 10. Now what?

Solution

This deal occurred in a teams match. The auction and early defense were identical at both tables. After the Q went to the king and ace, both Easts returned the 4 heart to Wests 9. Both Wests exited with the 10 taken by dummys king.

At the first table, declarer played the two of trumps to his king and Wests ace. When West exited with the 9, declarer won the trick with dummys ace. He cashed the A, planning to ruff a club back to hand. When West dropped the K under the ace, declarer believed this had to be a singleton, so he ruffed a diamond with his 7. West overruffed with the 9 to set the contract by one trick.

The second declarer appreciated that the only danger to his contract was if West held all of the outstanding trumps. He saw if he played a trump at trick four, he might have to guess which minor suit to ruff to return to hand.

To circumvent such difficulties, declarer cashed dummys A and A before playing the 2 to his king.

West won with the ace, but when he tried to cash the K, declarer ruffed, drew trumps and claimed. He made seven trumps, two diamonds and a club. The full deal:

16 10 8 6
2 K 3 A K 7 6 A Q 8 7 5 3
A 9 6 5 Q J 10 9 2 10 9 K 2
A 7 6 4 Q J 8 4 2 J 10 6 4

K Q J 10 8 7 4 3 8 5 5 3 9