Chicago Sun-Times - - WEATHER - BY FRANK STE­WART

“Sim­ple Satur­day” col­umns fo­cus on ba­sic tech­nique and log­i­cal think­ing.

If I could of­fer just one piece of ad­vice on dummy play, it would be “Plan first.” Don’t pro­ceed un­til you count win­ners or losers and de­vise a plan of play; don’t play even one card.

To­day’s de­clarer ig­nored that idea. When West led the deuce of spades against four hearts, South promptly won with dummy’s king to lead the 10 of trumps for a fi­nesse. West took the king and led a di­a­mond, and East won and re­turned the queen of spades. West ruffed South’s ace, and South had a spade loser. Down one.

West’s spade lead was a sure sin­gle­ton, and af­ter East over­called at the two level, vul­ner­a­ble, he was more likely to have the ace of di­a­monds than the king of trumps. So South should win the first spade with his ace and lead the ace and a low trump.

West wins and leads a di­a­mond, and East wins and re­turns a spade, but when West ruffs, he is ruff­ing South’s spade loser. South has the rest. Daily ques­tion

You hold: ♠ A64 ♥ AJ932 ♦ K7 ♣ A K 9. The dealer, at your right, opens one di­a­mond. You dou­ble, and your part­ner re­sponds one spade. What do you say?

An­swer: Many play­ers tend to get car­ried away with strong hands. Your hand is pow­er­ful, but your op­po­nent did open the bid­ding, and your part­ner may be broke. Bid two hearts. When you dou­ble be­fore bid­ding a suit, you prom­ise great strength. If you have a game, your part­ner will bid again.

South dealer

Both sides vul­ner­a­ble

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