Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - PUZZLES -

An im­por­tant part of sig­nalling is giv­ing part­ner in­for­ma­tion about suit pref­er­ence ( SP). The stan­dard method is known var­i­ously as Lavinthal or McKenny and a high spot card sug­gests in­ter­est in the higher rank­ing suit other than trumps and a low spot card sug­gests in­ter­est in the lower rank­ing suit. When a de­fender leads a suit and their part­ner is not try­ing to win the trick, the pri­or­ity is for an at­ti­tude sig­nal about con­tin­u­a­tion of the suit. On the next round, a count sig­nal and, on the third round, a suit pref­er­ence sig­nal is given. When de­clarer leads a suit, the de­fend­ers’ pri­or­ity is a count sig­nal then a suit pref­er­ence sig­nal. How­ever, when the de­fend­ers are try­ing to make tricks by ruff­ing, it is im­por­tant to show part­ner where there is a pos­si­ble re- en­try. To make this SP sig­nal, one plays a small card for part­ner to ruff when you want the lower rank­ing suit re­turned and a high one when you want the higher rank­ing suit re­turned. This hand is from a re­cent teams event in Can­berra.

Over the strong club bid ( 16+ hcp), West made a weak jump over­call. North showed the good spade suit even though he was short of the 8- 10 points this showed and South bid the good game ( there are 5 heart and 5 spade tricks) and East led part­ner’s suit. West won and re­turned the 4D to sug­gest an en­try in the lower suit. East ruffed and con­sid­ered his re­turn. North looks to have the QS and KH and 10 quick tricks so the only chance to beat the con­tract is for part­ner to have the KC as an en­try and the 4D seems to re­in­force this idea so East re­turned the 2C ( low card sug­gest­ing an­other di­a­mond ruff) to duly beat the game. At the other ta­ble, South opened 1H and North chose to bid 2H over 2D. South bid 4H and, although AD was led and con­tin­ued, the sin­gle­ton club was hid­den in hand and, when the AC was cashed the con­tract could not be beaten.

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