Los Angeles Times - - COMICS - By Frank Stewart

One mem­ber of my club is a pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­pher. Once I asked her when she had snapped her best pho­tos.

“Usu­ally it’s when I’ve for­got­ten to re­move the lens cap,” was her rue­ful re­ply.

Bridge re­quires con­cen­tra­tion as well as tech­nique and judg­ment, and we all have lapses. In to­day’s deal, East had over­called in spades, so West led the 10 against 1NT. De­clarer played low from dummy ... and East also played low.

De­clarer took his queen and led a club to dummy’s jack, but East re­fused the trick. He won the next club and led the king of spades to dummy’s ace. Af­ter that, South had to re­sort to an end play to go down only one.

South lost his con­cen­tra­tion at Trick One. He must take the ace of spades, lead the jack of clubs and con­tinue clubs. If East sets up his spades, South’s queen is an en­try to his long clubs, and he will prob­a­bly win eight tricks.

In­ci­den­tally, wouldn’t you think that a pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­pher could avoid los­ing her fo­cus?

Ques­tion: You hold: ♠ A8 2 ♥ AJ62 ♦ KJ73 ♣ J 5. Your part­ner opens one club, you re­spond one heart and he jumps to 2NT. The op­po­nents pass. What say you?

An­swer: This amounts to a sim­ple prob­lem in adding high-card points. Your part­ner’s bid­ding prom­ises a good-look­ing 18 points to (if there is such a thing) an unattrac­tive 20 points with bal­anced pat­tern. Your 14 points should suf­fice to pro­duce a play for 12 tricks, hence raise to 6NT.

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