LIFE & CULTURE
“Wendy is telling everybody that I’m a few tacos short of a combination plate when I’m declarer,” Cy the Cynic told me in the club lounge. Cy, a chauvinist, and
Wendy, our feminist, are always at odds.
“She’s saying your dummy play is weak?”
“It’s shameful,” Cy growled. “But two can play that game. Let me show you a deal from our penny game.”
It seemed that Wendy had played at four hearts. She won West’s trump lead in dummy and tried a club to her queen. West won and shifted to a diamond: three, king, eight.
“Wendy won the club return,” Cy told me, “drew trumps and let the jack of diamonds ride. East took the queen and cashed the ace of spades. Down one. Wendy blew it and should be held publicly accountable.”
I wish Cy and Wendy would make peace, but Wendy could have made four hearts. After she draws trumps, she leads a spade to her king. She next takes the A-J of clubs, pitching a spade from dummy, and exits with a spade. When East wins, he is end-played. You hold: A10632 7 ( KQ4 $ 10 8 7 2. Your partner opens one heart, you respond one spade and he bids two diamonds. What do you say? Answer: This is a brutal problem in “Standard” methods, where opener’s minimum change of suit covers a wide range of hands. Your partner could have 4, A K 865,AJ72,943or4,AK865,AJ1098, A 3. To pass would be timid. Raise to three diamonds, though you would rather have a fourth diamond. by Dana Summers