Wednesday 25 February 1998
My partner and I were given the hand first as a bidding problem. South opened One Club (strong) and as North I responded One No-trump. No, not a misprint, but showing at least five spades and at least eight points (well, nearly). Three Hearts by South showed a solid suit and I was now able to show the king and queen of diamonds but little else, after which partner plunged to Seven No-trumps.
I was told that the lead was the eight of clubs (remember, I was declarer as North) and, after scorning the finesse and testing spades unsuccessfully, I played hearts from the top. Easy!
In real life, it had been South who was declarer in Seven No-trumps and West had led 2J, giving declarer 12 top tricks. The spade break was unfortunate and, placing too much reliance on the possibility of a poor heart division, declarer elected to run !9. Oh dear!
Now, hold on a moment. If East holds five or more hearts as feared, then cashing four hearts, three spades and three diamonds produces a double squeeze. West has to keep 4J, East must retain his supposed heart guard, and suddenly the two of clubs may well become the 13th trick.
Game all; dealer South
4Q 9 8 7 5 3 2
#K Q 2
4J 10 6 4 4none
!10 3 !7 6 5 2
#J 9 7 #10 8 5 4 3
2J 10 9 7 2K 8 5 4
!A K Q J 8 4
2A Q 2
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