If at first

Khaleej Times - City Times - - ENTERTAINMENT -

“If at first you don’t suc­ceed, you may al­ready be at your level of in­com­pe­tence.” — corol­lary to the Pe­ter Prin­ci­ple

Too many de­clar­ers give a con­tract just one chance — and if at first they don’t suc­ceed, they’re toast. At to­day’s seven clubs, South took the ace of hearts and threw his ten of spades. He over­took the king of trumps and cashed five more trumps and the A-K of spades. De­clarer then took the top di­a­monds but lost the 13th trick to West, who had clung to his di­a­monds.

South ba­si­cally gave him­self one chance. How would you play the grand slam? GOOD LUCK South should play a low heart from dummy at Trick One, ruff in his hand and take the A-K of spades. If East- West played low, South would lead a trump to dummy’s king, dis­card the ten of spades on the ace of hearts, and hope for luck in di­a­monds.

But when East’s queen of spades falls, South can draw trumps, lead a spade to dummy and dis­card his ten of di­a­monds on the ace of hearts. DAILY QUES­TION You hold: ♠ J 7 5 ♥ A 9 7 6 5 2 ♦8 4 3 ♣ K. Your part­ner opens one spade, and the next player bids two di­a­monds. What do you say? AN­SWER: This case is close. If the hand were J 7 5, A K 7 6 5 2, 8 4 3, 2, I would fa­vor a bid of two hearts, plan­ning to support the spades cheaply next. As it is, the king of clubs may be wasted for of­fense, and the heart suit may not be a source of tricks. I would set­tle for a raise to two spades. South dealer Both sides vul­ner­a­ble

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