Wednesday 17 June 1998
West opened One No-trump (15-17 points), East raised to Two No-trumps and an intrepid South entered the lists with Three Spades(!). After two passes East doubled to end the auction. West led #K against Three Spades doubled and declarer ruffed. A low club to the queen won and West took the next club trick.
With the clubs established, a trump switch did not look attractive, so West forced again with a second diamond. South ruffed, cashed 2K to discard a heart from dummy, and continued with a heart. West took his ace and returned another heart to dummy's king. Now 4Q was covered by the king and ace, and a heart ruff was followed by a diamond ruff. That was eight tricks in the bag but declarer seemed to have run out of steam.
However, this was the position in the three card ending West held 47 !Q #10, dummy 44 #8,6, East 4J,2 #A, and declarer 410 28,6. The trump situation was curious (and fortuitous) for, when South led a winning club, the defenders were fixed. If West ruffs, he is on lead and South scores his 410 en passant for his ninth trick. If instead West discards, dummy ruffs with 44 and, if East over-ruffs, South's 410 again becomes a trick. There may be something in South's methods after all.
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