If at first
“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