Games: Bridge

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The Independent Culture
SOME OF the happiest moments in bridge come when you are declarer in an apparently hopeless contract. Without enthusiasm you go through the motions, preparing yourself for a concession after playing a decent number of tricks, then - in the closing stages - you suddenly see a glimmer of light.

It happened to South on this deal. After a pass by East, he opened One Club (his partnership was playing five-card majors) and North temporised with One Diamond. East joined in with One Spade and South rebid Three No-trumps. This would have been easy but North pressed on with Four Clubs and, against the final contract of Six Clubs, West led 42.

Clearly this was a singleton so declarer won East's jack with his ace. Although it looked as though two spade losers were inevitable, South started to play off winners. He drew trumps, cashed the top diamonds and continued trumps from dummy. When the fifth round of clubs was led, East had to find a discard from 4KQ !97 #9. He parted with his diamond, then threw a spade on the last trump.

Now declarer led !10 from dummy and ran it to West. If West had won this with his queen, he would have had to concede the last two tricks to South's hearts. He made a good try, allowing !10 to hold. However, declarer now threw East in with a spade and so won the last trick with his !A.

It looks as though East does better to save 4K !9 #9 for his last three cards but now !9 falls under the ten and South can overtake with his jack to ensure two of the last three tricks.

North-South game; dealer East


48 6 4


#K Q 5

2A J 10 9 7 6

West East

42 4K Q J 9 7

!K Q 6 5 3 2 !9 7 4

#10 8 7 #9 4 3 2

28 5 3 22


4A 10 5 3

!A J 8

#A J 6

2K Q 4