13 February 2011

Defensive follow up

You're playing a reasonably social teams match against some good players. The points have been mostly their way so you've been on defense far more than you'd like. Nothing like defense though, leading the right card or switching at the right time and you'll be a game up.
1 Pass 1 Pass
1 Pass 1NT Pass
2NT Pass 3NT end
Considering your options, carefully remembering your suit combinations and thinking back to old crones in smoky huts rambling about leading unbid suits you select the J.
A Q T x
T 5
Q 3
A Q T 8 3 
9 6 2
7 6 4
A J T 9 5
Despite nagging feelings that partner might have a few big cards in hearts this looks pretty good. Problem is everyone ducks. Partner plays the 4 which could be from 42, 4, K4, K42 but not x42. What next? Your carding methods have left the diamond suit as ambiguous as practical. If you want to get this right there's two key things to take in 1) the KJ of clubs look really bad, 2) you don't have any heart royalty so whatever parter has looks just as valuable. Lets face it, you're not getting in again.

Problem was I couldn't help fantasizing about partner having that K42 so I played a small diamond. It's wrong for so many reasons. Mainly because if partner does have  K42 they can work this out and dump the King under the Ace that I should have led. As is to be expected when you make such a mockery of logical thought partner holds K4. Nothing like defense though, leading the wrong card or switching at the wrong time and you'll be a game down.

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