Bridge

THE WIN­NING PLAY IS HARD TO HIGH­LIGHT

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

Doug Lar­son, a news­pa­per colum­nist and editor, wrote, "What some peo­ple mis­take for the high cost of liv­ing is re­ally the cost of high liv­ing."

To­day's deal was played in a money game with the fairly high stake of 25 cents per point. What hap­pened in three no-trump af­ter West led his fourth-high­est spade?

The auc­tion was straight­for­ward. Yes, North would have pre­ferred a fourth heart for his take­out dou­ble, but his hand was too strong to pass. Then South's ad­vance of three notrump promised 13-15 points with spades well held.

When the dummy came down, de­clarer saw 26 points be­tween his hand and the dummy's. Maybe East had a jack or two, but West had to have the three miss­ing aces.

South made the nor­mal-look­ing play of run­ning the open­ing lead around to his hold­ing, tak­ing East's eight with his 10. He then led a low di­a­mond, but West won with his ace, cashed the spade ace and con­tin­ued with the spade jack. De­clarer took eight tricks (two spades, three di­a­monds and three clubs), but as soon as he tried to es­tab­lish a heart winner, West won that trick and cashed his spades. Down one cost $25.

North was not amused. He had no­ticed that if South had played sec­ond hand high, win­ning the first trick with dummy's spade king, the con­tract would have made. De­clarer would then play a di­a­mond to his queen. West wins with his ace, but can­not con­tinue spades with­out con­ced­ing two more tricks in the suit. What­ever he does, South has time to drive out the heart ace to claim plus 600 and $150.

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