Bridge Hand Of The Week

Think it through

Jul 23, 2018
Dlr: West Vul: Both
13 13
A Q 6 Q 6 K 10 9 8 5 3 Q 6

K J 10 A 8 7 4 7 2 A J 10 3
West1All Pass
North2
EastPass
South3NT

After your rather agricultural auction, West leads the J. Dummys queen holds the trick. Now what?

Solution

After winning the first trick in dummy, declarer considered the bidding and placed West with all of the missing aces and kings. If his assessment was accurate, playing on clubs immediately would limit him to eight tricks.

Accordingly, declarer crossed to hand by playing the 6 to his 10 and led a diamond. If West played low, the king would win and he would then turn his attention to making three club tricks.

West saw that it was likely that declarer was trying to steal his ninth trick with the diamond play, so he rose with the A and continued with the K. As his opponents were playing five-card majors, declarer won with the A and played a second diamond towards dummy. When West followed with the 4, declarer covered it with dummys 8. East won the trick with the J and switched to a club. Declarer rose with the ace and claimed 10 tricks. He made three spades, two hearts, four diamonds and a club.

As the opening bid had placed West with all of the missing high-value honors, you should note that playing on diamonds would have succeeded when East had a singleton or doubleton Q or J. Further, it also would have won when East had held exactly three diamonds. The full deal:

13 13 1 13
A Q 6 Q 6 K 10 9 8 5 3 Q 6
7 4 K J 10 9 2 A Q 4 K 8 2
9 8 5 3 2 5 3 J 6 9 7 5 4

K J 10 A 8 7 4 7 2 A J 10 3