MORE LUCK NEEDED ON INDEPENDENCE DAY
First of all, I hope all of my American readers have as fun an Independence Day as is possible in the circumstances.
Hunting for luck quotations, I came upon: "Diligence is the mother of good luck." So, get ready to be lucky.
North-South pushed into six spades. After the suit was agreed, there were three control-bids and a jump to slam. It was a poor contract, but neither player did anything egregious. How did South do due diligence after West led the diamond king to dummy's ace?
Declarer was faced with losers in spades and diamonds. He could have banked everything on East's having the spade queen with one or two low trumps. Slightly better, though, was to take the two top trumps, then, assuming the queen had not dropped, to switch to clubs, hoping that they split 3-3. Then dummy's diamond loser would have disappeared on the club two.
Here, though, when South led a spade, East played the queen. That was surely a singleton. No one would have played the queen from queen-doubleton. This meant that declarer was destined to lose a trump trick to West. To eliminate the potential diamond loser, South had to find clubs 3-3.
He won with the spade ace and cashed his top clubs. When they obliged, declarer led his last club and discarded dummy's diamond five. West ruffed, but that was the only trick he got. South won the spade return, ruffed his
remaining diamond on the board, played a heart to his ace, drew West's final trump and claimed.
Copyright United Feature Syndicate (Asia Features)