ACES ON BRIDGE
In today’s auction, as South, you break North’s transfer to hearts to show four trumps and a non-minimum. Then, over a four-diamond cue-bid, you show your spade control and jump to slam when partner denies a club control. Rustic perhaps, but the final contract is a good one.
Against six hearts, the defenders lead a trump. When dummy comes down, it would be easy to relax and to try to rely on taking the black suit finesses — which give you at least a 75 percent chance of coming home with 12 tricks. But you can do better. While there may be more than one line that succeeds here, the neatest play involves an elimination, which brings you in at close to a 100 percent chance of success.
You carefully rise with the ace, unblock the diamond honors, come to the heart king (preserving dummy’s five) then cash the diamond queen to pitch a club, then play the ace and another club, ruffing high in dummy.
Now you lead the heart five to the six, ruff the last club in dummy, and have reduced to an ending where both the North and South hands have three spades and a trump. When you lead a spade to the 10 and queen, West must surrender. He can either lead a spade into the tenace or give you a ruff-sluff if he has a minor suit to exit with. No matter what he does, you have the rest.
ANSWER: The redouble on this sequence suggests playing in two clubs redoubled. Even though you have great controls, are you prepared to play a 4-2 (or possibly 3-2) fit? Your partner might have opened one club with four and a decent suit — given that we know his diamonds are clearly weak. I’d just bid two hearts, which is natural and forcing after using fourth suit.