Games: Bridge

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The Independent Online
There are a number of ways of insulting opponents. I remember this one (from my formative years) quite well. Fortunately I was dummy at the time and not the target for East's attack. The hand, however, is not without interest.

South opened One Spade and, as North, I raised to game to end the auction. West led #K against Four Spades and, when he continued with #Q, East overtook with his ace and switched to a low club. Declarer brooded, naively tried the queen, and won West's king with the ace.

This was East's moment (it was a chatty game): "You tink you play mit Kinder?" he demanded in a mid-European accent. Certainly the play was all over now: there was no escape from a losing club and, eventually, a heart as well.

Comments apart, what went wrong? When you think about it, it is inconceivable that East should go out of his way to overtake #K in order to lead away from 2K. Therefore declarer can place West with this card. The only hope, then, is that West holds at most two hearts.

On that assumption, South carefully retains 2Q and wins the trick with dummy's ace. He draws trumps, ruffs his last diamond, and cashes !A and !K before exiting with 2Q. On lead, with no hearts left, West has to concede a ruff and discard, and South's losing heart goes away.

Game all; dealer South


4Q 10 7 4 2

!A 9 8 4

#9 3

2A 6

West East

48 3 4J

!J 6 !Q 10 5 2

#K Q J 6 #A 10 7 4

2K J 9 5 3 210 8 7 2


4A K 9 6 5

!K 7 3

#8 5 2

2Q 4