Bridge

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The Independent Culture
One Way to encourage partner to do the right thing in defence is to discourage him from doing the wrong thing. West had this idea clearly in mind on this deal but, alas, his partner did not pick up the message.

South opened Two No-trumps and North raised to game. West led the four of hearts against Three No-trumps and declarer won East's seven deceptively with his queen. With only one entry to dummy there was clearly no point in trying the diamond finesse, so South played off the ace, king and jack of diamonds to leave West on lead while East discarded a low club.

West had not been fooled by declarer's harmless false-card at trick 1 - if East had held the jack of hearts, he would have played it. So South still held the king and jack of hearts and it was clear that he would have at least nine tricks on a heart continuation. The only chance, therefore, lay in finding East with the ace of spades and that the defenders could take three tricks in the suit.

There was the acute danger, though, that if he led the nine of spades to East's supposed ace, his partner might take it as simply an attempt to give him the lead for a heart return and that was the last thing that West wanted. How could East be diverted? Eureka! West cashed the ace of hearts to make it clear (or so he thought) that he had no further interest in the heart suit before he switched to the spade.

East duly won with his hoped-for ace but still woodenly returned a heart; so West's intelligent defence went for nothing.

GAME ALL: dealer South

North

] 8 6 2

_ 8 5

+ 10 9 7 5 2

[ K Q 3

West East

] K J 9 ] A 10 3

_ A 10 6 4 _ 9 7 2

+ Q 6 4 + 8 3

[ 10 7 4 [ 9 8 6 5 2

South

] Q 7 5 4

_ K Q J 3

+ A K J

[ A J

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