You tell partner the suit to lead
Henry Morgan, a humorist who died in 1994, said, “A kleptomaniac is a person who helps himself because he can’t help himself.” A bridge player is a person who helps his partner when he cannot make the key play himself.
Whenever a good bridge player is on defense, he always wonders how he can make his partner’s life easier. In this deal, for example, look at the North and East hands. Against four spades, West leads the club five. After East takes the trick with his ace, and South plays the 10, what should East do next?
North had 12 points with fourcard spade support. Most hands like that would have been worth a game-force, but not with eight losers and 4-3-3-3 distribution, when losers tend to stay losers forever. Third hand should always analyze his partner’s lead. The club five is either low from length with at least one honor (perhaps K-9-5) or a singleton. Whichever holding West started with, it cannot hurt for East to return a club. However, just in case West can ruff at trick two, it is East’s job to tell his partner which suit to return at trick three by sending a suit-preference signal. Since East’s winner is in hearts, the higher-ranking of the other two sidesuits, he should lead back the club jack, his highest-remaining card in the suit. Yes, West would probably be able to read the seven, but East should make the position as clear as possible. (With the diamond ace, East would return the club four.) West ruffs, shifts to the heart 10, and gets a second ruff to defeat the contract.