Daily Bridge Club /

The Buffalo News - - COMICS - By Frank Ste­wart

My sum­mer tour of Ire­land be­gan in Dublin, where I played at the out­stand­ing Re­gent Bridge Club. In to­day’s deal, my part­ner slipped on de­fense. To see if you can do bet­ter, cover the West/South cards. De­fend as East.

Against five clubs, West leads the jack of hearts: king, ace, deuce. What next?

To beat this con­tract -- and since not ev­ery North-South will reach game, you may need to beat it to avoid dis­as­ter -- West must hold the ace of spades, but un­less you have a di­a­mond or trump trick com­ing (un­likely), you will need two spades.

If de­clarer has enough en­tries to set up and run the di­a­monds, you are sunk. But if West had a sin­gle­ton di­a­mond, he might have led it. If South has one and can’t use the di­a­monds, he may have un­avoid­able spade losers.

At Trick Two, re­turn a pas­sive heart. As the cards lay, South must lose two spades. At my ta­ble, East shifted to the jack of spades: seven, five, king. De­clarer later led a spade to his nine and made his game.

You hold: ´ A54 ™ J108 65 © K6 ® 9 6 2. Your part­ner opens one di­a­mond, you re­spond one heart and he bids one spade. What do you say?

A: You have no good call. To pass is pos­si­ble -- part­ner’s one spade is not forc­ing -- but he could have 18 points, and you might miss a game. A re­bid of two hearts would re­quire a longer or much stronger suit. As the lesser evil, try 1NT de­spite the lack of a club trick. At least your pat­tern is bal­anced.

West dealer Both sides vul­ner­a­ble

NORTH ´ K62 ™K A109854 J53

WEST A54 J10865 K6 962 West Pass 3™ All Pass

EAST J1083 AQ743 Q732 None

SOUTH ´ Q97 ™ 92 ©J


North East South 1 1 ™ 2® 4 (!) Pass 5®

Open­ing lead – ™J

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