DAILY BRIDGE CLUB
Every partnership reaches speculative contracts; world-class experts reach them quite often. When the missing cards must lie a certain way for your contract to succeed, assume that they do.
In today’s deal, South scrapes up a 1NT response to his partner’s one-diamond opening bid, and North, with a balanced 19 points, raises to 3NT. West leads the eight of spades, and South gulps when he sees dummy.
How should South play to give himself the best chance?
South needs four club tricks but is short of entries to his hand. He must win the first spade with dummy’s king, preserving his ace as an entry. South next takes the ace of clubs and leads the jack, and East plays low.
South must assume that the clubs lie favorably. If he plays low from his hand, he will fail no matter what; if West has K-x-x, he will play low also. So South must overtake the jack with his queen, hoping East started with K-x-x or K-x-x-x. The actual lie of the cards rewards the correct play. Daily question
You hold: ♠ K93 ♥ AK32 ♦ A763 ♣ A J. You open one diamond, your partner bids one spade, you jump to 2NT and he tries three hearts. What do you say?
Answer: Your bidding has shown about 19 points, balanced. You can raise to four hearts, but your values are so slammish that stronger action is best: Bid four clubs. You wouldn’t seek a trump suit at this stage, so your “cue bid” shows a great heart fit, the ace of clubs and slam interest. North dealer