Chances rarely come more than once in this game but East-West, having missed two early opportunities, were able to take advantage of a subsequent misplay (wrong view?) by declarer.

South opened One No-trump (15-17 points) and North responded Two Hearts, a transfer to spades. South dutifully bid Two Spades but, when North returned to Two No-trumps, had no hesitation with his good fit in jumping to Four Spades. Yes, the ace and another diamond would have defeated the game out of hand, but West led !Q which looked attractive with a strong no- trump on his right. Declarer won on the table and led a trump. this was the defenders' second chance for a diamond ruff but, not unnaturally, East played low and declarer was able to clear the trumps.

A passive heart return left declarer with the problem of tackling diamonds for only two losers. He cashed his three club tricks and led #10 from the table. East covered with the jack and South put on the queen. West took his ace and returned the suit for his partner, with #K,8 over dummy's #9,5, to score two more tricks.

It is true that South's play might have succeeded in some situations but a better bet, which works as the cards lie, is to duck #J. Now, if either opponent has started with the ace or the king doubleton in diamonds, he will be forced, when he wins the next trick, to concede a ruff and discard.

Game all; dealer South


4J 9 8 7 5

!A 4

#10 9 5

2K J 10

West East

46 2 4A 4

!Q J 10 9 2 !8 7 6 5

#A 6 #K J 8 2

29 6 4 2 28 7 5


4K Q 10 3

!K 3

#Q 7 4 3

2A Q 3