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"EAST found a good defence!" mourned South after going down on this deal. He had certainly been given a hard time, but he could have succeeded in spite of that.

South opened One Spade and North responded Two Clubs. East joined in with Two Diamonds; South showed his hearts, going to game after hearing jump preference to Three Spades. West led +2 against Four Spades and the defenders played three rounds of the suit, making South ruff.

With the ace of clubs still missing, everything depended on playing the trump suit for no losers. A low spade from hand saw West following with ]Q. After winning with the king, declarer followed with a low spade from dummy, intending to finesse the eight. However, East went in with his nine, effectively scotching South's plan.

If South crossed to _K and drew the remaining trumps, it would now be too late to establish the club trick he needed. He led [Q first, hoping that East would hold off. But East took his ace and led a fourth round of diamonds, forcing South to change his plans. He discarded a heart from hand and ruffed in dummy, then started to play winning clubs. East, however, simply discarded his hearts. Eventually a heart had to be led and East ruffed for the setting trick.

Declarer was nearly there: all he had to do was cash one top heart before starting to run clubs. East can discard what he likes, but all South's remaining hearts go away, and at trick 12 the lead is still in dummy and the missing trumps can be picked up.

GAME ALL: dealer South


] K 4 2

_ K 8 6

+ J 7 4

[ K J 10 9

West East

] Q ] 10 9 7 5

_ 10 9 4 3 _ 5 2

+ 10 5 2 + A K Q 8 6

[ 8 7 6 4 3 [ A 2


] A J 8 6 3

_ A Q J 7

+ 9 3

[ Q 5