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There was a defence to South's contract of Four Spades on this deal but it required imaginative play by West. It proved no great surprise when he failed to find the right switch at trick 2 - to be fair, not many players would.

South opened One Spade, West overcalled with Two Dia-monds, and North raised to Four Spades. West decided that to fight on with Five Clubs would be too risky (it would have cost 500) and considered doubling instead. As he was not going to defeat it, I suppose he made a good decision when he passed.

The opening lead of the ace of clubs was easy enough but a glance at dummy made it clear that his partner could hold nothing in the way of high cards. With only three defensive tricks himself, West decided that the only chance lay in finding East with a void in diamonds. Accordingly he switched to the jack of diamonds and dummy's queen won. True, when West took his ace of trumps he was able to give East a ruff but it was only a loser that he trumped and now the king of diamonds had no part to play.

Any thoughts? Try the king of diamonds at trick 2! Declarer wins and plays trumps but West wins the first round and follows with the jack of diamonds. Dummy's queen is ruffed away and South is still left with a losing diamond.

It is fortunate to find East with just enough in hearts to deny declarer four tricks in the suit, but this was more likely than finding him with a void diamond.

East-West game; dealer South


] K J 9 3

_ K Q 7 6

+ Q 8 4 2

[ J

West East

] A 7 ] 6 2 _ J 8 _ 10 9 5 4

+ K J 10 9 3 + 7

[ A K 10 3 [ 9 7 6 5 4 2


] Q 10 8 5 4

_ A 3 2

+ A 6 5

[ Q 8