“I de­cided if I was go­ing to beat her, it would be at her own game,” Cy the Cynic growled. Minnie Bot­toms wears old bi­fo­cals that make her mix up kings and jacks, of­ten to her op­po­nents’ dis­may.

The Denver Post - - FEATURES - By Frank Ste­wart

Cy has been Minnie’s chief vic­tim. In a match against Minnie’s team, Cy sat East at his ta­ble. Against 3NT, he took the ace of di­a­monds and re­turned a di­a­mond. South won and led a spade to dummy’s ace.

“I saw what was com­ing,” Cy told me. “South would fi­nesse in hearts and take five hearts, a spade, a di­a­mond and two clubs.”

“Why didn’t he go to dummy with the king of clubs?”

“He was giv­ing him­self an ‘ex­tra chance,’ ” the Cynic said. “And it came home: I played the king of spades un­der the ace! So South didn’t fi­nesse in hearts. He came to his hand and let the eight of spades ride, ex­pect­ing five spades, two clubs, a di­a­mond and a heart. Down he went.”

“Well done,” I said.

“Minnie was East at the other ta­ble,” Cy said glumly. “She pro­duced the same de­fense.”

Daily Ques­tion: You hold: & 842 h A Q965 ( KJ $ A 7 2. You open one heart, your part­ner re­sponds one spade, you bid 1NT and he jumps to three clubs. What do you say?

An­swer: Your part­ner surely in­tended his three clubs as forc­ing, es­pe­cially with no prior agree­ment. Though your spades are weak, your cor­rect bid is three spades. He may want to know about your three-card sup­port. If he has doubts about play­ing at spades, he can al­ways re­turn to 3NT.

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