Chicago Sun-Times - - WEATHER - BY FRANK STE­WART

At the Mad Hat­ter’s game, the Queen of Hearts, a kib­itzer, was irate if her card was part of a lost trick.

“I’m the most po­tent card in Won­der­land,” the Queen blus­tered. “No ace or king dares cap­ture me.”

When Alice was de­clarer at four spades, West, the Dor­mouse, led a trump. Alice counted 10 tricks if she scored dummy’s ace of clubs. She con­sid­ered lead­ing a low heart to dummy’s jack, but if East took the king and led another trump, the con­tract might fail.

“Apolo­gies, your majesty,” Alice told the Queen of Hearts af­ter due thought, “but this is the best play.” And she led the queen of hearts.

The Hat­ter, East, was stuck. If he won and led his last trump, the Queen of Hearts would be homi­ci­dal, and Alice would get to dummy with the jack of hearts to take the ace of clubs.

“Bet­ter to lose an over­trick than my head,” the Hat­ter mum­bled, and he played low. Alice then took the ace, ruffed a heart in dummy and threw a loser on the ace of clubs. Mak­ing five! Daily ques­tion

You hold: ♠ AKQJ65 ♥ AQ64 ♦ A104 ♣ None. The dealer, at your right, opens one heart. What do you say?

An­swer: Sixty years ago, this promis­ing hand might have called for a cue bid of two hearts: “Part­ner, I have a game-forc­ing hand de­spite the op­po­nent’s open­ing bid.” But that type of hand oc­curred so rarely that mod­ern play­ers de­fine a di­rect cue bid dif­fer­ently: as some type of two-suiter. Dou­ble, plan­ning to bid strongly later.

South dealer N-S vul­ner­a­ble

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