stevesgames (stevesgames) wrote,

Bridge Column

                  Department of Defense (IV)

                     by Stephen Rzewski

                           North (dummy)


            West (you)                                            


          bidding:   N     E     S     W
                    1♦     P    1♥     P
                    2♥     (all pass)

	Recently, a defensive problem involving a particular card
combination came my way, which you will see from time to time, so 
it is worth confining to memory.

	You start the defense with the ace and king of clubs, partner
playing low-high and declarer contributing the jack on the second round.
You switch to a diamond.  Partner shows up with the ace and queen, so 
he wins two more tricks and exits with a third diamond, declaring 
winning the jack.  A heart is played to dummy’s ace, partner following 
with the queen.  A second heart goes to declarer’s king, who then throws
you in with a third heart, partner discarding clubs on the last two tricks.
What do you now play, looking at:

                                  ♦ ---
                                  ♣ ---

                  ♥ ---
                  ♦ ---
                  ♣ 63

	Declarer appears to have three spades and two trumps left in his
hand.  You will have to break the spade suit, as a club play now will 
give declarer a ruff-and-sluff.  If partner has the king of spades, you 
will always get one more trick, so the relevant case is when partner has 
the queen and declarer the king.  

	You might get away with leading the deuce, if partner has the 
8-spot and puts in that card if declarer calls for a low card from dummy. 
However, if it turns out that declarer has the 8, he will either win the
trick cheaply with that card, or if partner puts up the queen, declarer 
will then have a finessing position over your jack with dummy’s A-10.   

	Suppose you lead the 9, trying to get partner to withhold the 
queen unless dummy’s 10 is played.  If you do that, and declarer turns 
out to have good spots (8-7), the play will go: 10, queen, king, and he
will now be able to run those spot cards through you and pick up your jack.

	The play that covers all the bases is to start with the JACK. 
This renders declarer helpless.  If he plays dummy’s ace, followed by 
the 10, you will always score the 9, provided that partner covers the 
10 with the queen.  The full deal:


                 ♠J92                        ♠Q53
                 ♥J103                       ♥Q
                 ♦874                        ♦AQ65
                 ♣AK63                       ♣109875


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