07 September 2011

Deceptively safe

Some contracts are great spots to be in even though they may not immediately look like it. The actual auction was long and torturous so instead I'll give you a simplified version:

Dan: I've got some spades!
Partner: My hand is bad, don't get too excited.
Dan: Completely pathetic?
Partner: Well, no, not completely.
Dan: What if I said I had hearts?
Partner: I don't really care.
Dan: Spades is where I really want to play though.
Partner: You just bid whatever you like.
Dan: Fine, 6 it is.
It's a wonderful system.

9 2
K T 9
J 9 7 6 2

A Q T 8 6 5 4
A 6 4 3

6 indeed. It's nice that there's no wastage in clubs but the diamond situation is a disappointment. The contract looks woeful actually. That is until you consider one small detail, the 8 that's sitting in front of West.

Yes that little heart makes all the difference. Why into an auction where there are two suits completely unbid would you lead into the second suit of a hand that has driven to slam with almost no encouragement?


Only one reason to lead a singleton - to get a trump trick.

Only one reason to want a trump trick - you don't already have one.

Win the A, cross in diamonds, take the marked spade finesse, draw trumps, pitch a heart on a diamond and claim?

Yes but we can prove our theory first. Win the A and lead back another! West ruffs and gleefully cashes the A. Ruff and complete as above. If West had followed to the second heart maybe the spades need to be rethought.

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