BRIDGE

The Star Early Edition - - TONIGHT -

In an ef­fort to lose weight, Cy the Cynic has been tak­ing med­i­ca­tion: “girth-con­trol pills,” he calls them. “I de­cided last week that I’m go­ing to lose 30 pounds,” Cy told me. “So how are you do­ing?” “I’ve got only 40 to go,” said the Cynic. As de­clarer at to­day’s four hearts, Cy won the sec­ond club — and had only nine more win­ners to go. When he cashed the ace of trumps next, West threw a club. Cy mut­tered an oath, then ruffed his los­ing club in dummy, cashed the A-K of spades and led a third spade. He ruffed his fourth spade in dummy but lost two trumps to East to go down one. Cy fell short of his goal. Could you do bet­ter? You hold: A K 4 6 5 4 3 A J 5 2

9 4. You open one di­a­mond, and your part­ner re­sponds one spade. The op­po­nents pass. What do you say?

You have only 12 high­card points, but your open­ing bid was quite proper: You have good de­fen­sive val­ues and a jack that is sup­ported by the ace. A bid of 1NT now would not be an er­ror, but I strongly pre­fer a raise to two spades. Auc­tions are usu­ally eas­ier when a trump suit is set promptly.

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