Los Angeles Times - - COMICS - 2015, Tri­bune Con­tent Agency By Frank Stewart

“Ever taken a lie-de­tec­tor test?” a friend asked me.

“I’ve never been hooked up to a lie de­tec­tor,” I said.

“I mar­ried one. My wife can catch me in tiny fibs. Her pow­ers ex­tend to bridge.”

My friend de­fended to­day’s deal as West in a home game. His wife was de­clarer.

“She took the ace of hearts, ruffed her last heart in dummy and let the queen of trumps ride. I played low. My wife then led another trump. When East played low, she ap­praised me — and played the ace.”

“She next led a diamond to dummy and re­turned the 10 of clubs. I took the queen, cashed my king of trumps and led a heart. My wife ruffed, lost a club to my ace,

ruffed the next heart and claimed.”

I’m not sure why South re­fused the sec­ond trump fi­nesse, but she goes down if she fi­nesses again. West wins and forces with a heart. South draws trumps, but when West takes the queen of clubs, he leads a fourth heart to force out South’s last trump and cashes a heart when he takes the ace of clubs.

Ques­tion: You hold: ♠A J 10 8 3 ♥A 5 ♦ A 8 2 ♣ K J 7. Your part­ner opens one heart. The next player passes. What do you say?

An­swer: Your hand is worth about 18 points, and slam is likely if part­ner has a bit of ex­tra strength. To alert him, jump-shift to two spades. If he bids, say, 2NT next, raise to 3NT, show­ing a strong, bal­anced hand with mild slam in­ter­est. Don’t re­spond one spade; the auc­tion will be eas­ier if you show slam as­pi­ra­tions quickly. South dealer Both sides vul­ner­a­ble

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