stevesgames (stevesgames) wrote,
stevesgames
stevesgames

Bridge Column


                       TEST YOUR PLAY (V)

                       by Stephen Rzewski

	   matchpoints
            vul:  N-S
           dealer:  N
	
                           North

                          ♠A1053
                          ♥A3
                          ♦A109
                          ♣Q865


                           South

                          ♠KQJ742
                          ♥J10
                          ♦8
                          ♣AK92


              bidding:   N      E      S      W
                        1♣     2NT    3♠      5♦
                        5♠      P     6♠ (all pass

	             opening lead:   ♦2

	Today's deal came from a recent STAC tournament.  The opponents'
hands have been modified to make a more suitable problem.  Plan the play.

    *         *          *          *         *         *         *

	
                           North

                         ♠ A1053
                         ♥ A3
                         ♦ A109
                         ♣ Q865

              West                        East

              ♠ 96                       ♠ 8
              ♥ Q65                      ♥ K98742
              ♦ Q632                     ♦ KJ754
              ♣ J1073                    ♣ 4

                           South

                          ♠ KQJ742
                          ♥ J10
                          ♦ 8
                          ♣ AK92


	There is a heart loser you can do nothing about, and there is no 
further problem if the clubs divide 3-2, so you should assume they will
split 4-1 or worse, which is quite likely, given East’s “Unusual 2NT” 
call, showing great length in the red suits.

	If West has four clubs which include the J-10, an endplay can be
executed in the following manner:  win the ace of diamonds, ruff a diamond
high in the South hand, draw trumps with the king and ace of spades.  Then
ruff dummy’s last diamond (a third round of trumps can be played should 
they prove to divide 3-0).  

	Now comes the key play:  play one high club honor from the South 
hand, followed by the ace of hearts.  The position at that point will be:
			
                          North

                         ♠ 105
                         ♥ 3
                         ♦ ----
                         ♣ Q86

              West                       East

             ♠ ----                     ♠ ----
             ♥ Q6                       ♥ K987
             ♦ Q                        ♦ J7
             ♣ J107                     ♣ ----

                          South

                         ♠ Q7
                         ♥ J
                         ♦ ----
                         ♣ K92

	Now simply exit with a heart.  If East wins the trick, he will be
forced to give you a ruff-and-sluff of your club loser.  If West wins, 
unless he does the same, he will be forced to return a club.  If he plays
the jack or 10, let this come around to your king, and you will have a 
finessing position against his remaining honor-7.  

	It is essential to play one high club before exiting with the 
heart, or else East can win the trick and exit with his singleton club.

	If your club holding were weaker still, such that you were 
missing the J-10-9, the contract could still be made along the same 
lines, provided that East’s singleton happened to be one of those cards.
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