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The Independent Culture
'I WAS end-played at trick one]' claimed West after this deal. To divert attention from his failure to make his slam, declarer tried to explain that West's statement was an oxymoron, but North was not to be side-tracked and suggested a better, and winning line of play.

South had an awkward problem when West's opening bid of One Spade was passed round to him. To bid diamonds, at any level, hardly seemed to do justice to his hand and a take-out double had obvious limitations. Eventually he cue-bid Two Spades and, after a certain amount of guesswork, ended in Six Diamonds.

West led the king of spades and, from his opening bid, it seemed sure that he held both of the other missing kings. At least South did not squander his chances by taking futile finesses - he discarded his queen of hearts on the ace of spades, drew trumps, and played the ace and another club. He had hoped that West's king was a doubleton but now West took two clubs tricks to defeat the slam.

Dummy's suggestion was much better. Suppose declarer discards a club on the ace of spades and follows with the jack of spades to discard another club. West wins and exits with a third spade on which South discards the queen of clubs.

Then he plays off the ace of clubs and has plenty of entries to dummy to ruff two clubs in hand. This establishes the five of clubs for his 12th trick.