Bridge

A SIM­I­LAR DAN­GER AND AN­TI­DOTE

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - by Phillip Alder

Mar­cus Buck­ing­ham is an English au­thor who bases most of his writ­ing on ex­ten­sive sur­vey data from in­ter­views with workers in coun­tries around the world. He said, "When you feel as though you can't do some­thing, the sim­ple an­ti­dote is ac­tion: Be­gin do­ing it. Start the process, even if it's just a sim­ple step, and don't stop at the be­gin­ning."

This is yes­ter­day's deal ro­tated by 90 de­grees. Then, East was in five spades after South had led his sin­gle­ton di­a­mond. To make the con­tract, East won the first trick in the dummy, led the heart king and dis­carded his sin­gle­ton club to stop North from get­ting on lead -- a text­book scis­sors coup. To­day, South is in five hearts dou­bled. After West leads the spade seven, what should de­clarer do?

South might have opened four hearts, but that would have risked missing a slam if his part­ner had a use­ful hand. After North re­sponded one no-trump, East jumped to four spades, of course. Now South felt that he had to bid five hearts, which West was happy to dou­ble. East thought about over­rul­ing his part­ner and pulling to five spades, but even­tu­ally chose to pass.

It is easy to over­look the dan­ger to this con­tract. Sup­pose South wins with the spade ace, ruffs his sec­ond spade and plays on trumps. West gets in with his king and leads a di­a­mond to part­ner. Then a spade through de­clarer promotes West's heart 10 as the setting trick.

In­stead, South, after ruff­ing the sec­ond spade, should lead a heart to his ace, then play three rounds of clubs, dis­card­ing his sole di­a­mond to cut the de­fend­ers' com­mu­ni­ca­tions -- an­other scis­sors coup.

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