Bridge Hand Of The Week

Take your best shot

Jan 01, 2018
Dlr: West Vul: E-W
10 15
J 8 7 3 2 J 7 6 A 4 A 7 4

A K 10 5 4 A 5 2 J 7 K 3 2
West3Pass All Pass
NorthPass 4
EastPass Pass
South34

Against your 4 contract, West starts with the K. Can you see a way to 10 tricks?

Solution

After West led the K, declarer won with dummys ace. It seemed that it would not be a simple matter to make 10 tricks. It looked as though declarer was slated to lose two hearts, a club and a diamond even if the opponents trumps split favorably.

The situation grew more dire when declarer played a low trump from dummy, East discarding a heart.

Declarer saw that his only hope for 10 tricks was an endplay against West. If that were possible, West would have to have started with 3=1=7=2 distribution. So after taking the top two trumps in hand, declarer cashed the A and K, followed by the A. Next came the J. West took the trick with the Q as it would serve no purpose to play low: He would just be thrown on lead with a trump.

After cashing the Q, West had to lead a diamond. Declarer did not ruff, however. Instead, he discarded a club from the dummy and a heart from hand. Declarer ruffed the next diamond in dummy and discarded his remaining heart from hand. Declarer then crossruffed the last three tricks to make his contract, losing only a trump and two diamonds. The full deal:

10 7 8 15
J 8 7 3 2 J 7 6 A 4 A 7 4
Q 9 6 3 K Q 10 9 5 3 2 9 6
K Q 10 9 8 4 8 6 Q J 10 8 5

A K 10 5 4 A 5 2 J 7 K 3 2