BRIDGE

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The Independent Culture
This was an intriguing deal from the Philip Morris European Mixed Teams Championship, played in Monte Carlo earlier this year in a match between British and Israeli teams.

This was the (uncontested) auction: 1C - 1D; 3C - 3S; 3NT - 4C; 4NT - 5H; 6C - all pass. Possibly Moshe Katz, as South, intended Four No-trumps to be natural but it was taken as Blackwood and the indifferent club slam was reached.

There would have been no story if Sandra Penfold had found a heart lead, but she chose the two of spades and declarer was in business. He won with his king, crossed to the ace of diamonds, and discarded his three hearts on dummy's top spades.

Then came the queen of hearts, covered with the ace, and ruffed. The ten of hearts was the winner needed for a diamond discard, but how to get to dummy? A low club from hand would have worked but would have failed if East held the trump king. South found an alternative when he led the queen of clubs. West took her king but now the jack was the required entry and declarer ended with 12 tricks.

With hindsight, Sandra could have allowed the queen of clubs to hold. Her king falls under the ace but her partner now has a trump trick and eventually declarer loses a diamond as well.

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