Bridge: Solution in seconds

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The Independent Culture
South did not take long to see the solution to his problem on this deal, writes Alan Hiron. In fact, as he modestly maintained, he spotted it within seconds of going one down in his game contract.

Love all; dealer South


Q 7

A 2

8 7 2

A K J 9 5


A K J 2

8 7 3

K 9 6 3

7 6


10 9 6 4

6 5 4

J 10 5 4

Q 10 8


8 5 3

K Q J 10 9


4 3 2

South opened One Heart and West overcalled with One Spade. This was not a textbook overcall but it was a suit he wanted led and, after North's bid of Two Clubs, his partner's raise to Two Spades made life difficult for North-South.

South and West passed, North bid Three Spades and his partnership ended in Four Hearts. Had there been no opposition bidding, there might well have been an easy Three No-trumps.

West led the ace of spades against Four Hearts and switched to a trump. With no hope of ruffing a spade on the table, declarer decided to pin his faith on the club suit. He drew trumps in three rounds and finessed the jack of clubs. After East had won, the defenders took two more spade tricks to defeat the contract.

While South could not ruff a spade on the table, he overlooked the fact that dummy's second trump prevented the defenders from taking two more spade tricks immediately. The successful line, guaranteeing the contract whenever the clubs were 3-2, is to win the trump switch in dummy and simply lead a low club at trick 3. Now, whatever the defenders try, declarer is in control and there are ten top winners.