National Post (Latest Edition)


- By Paul Thurston Feedback always welcome at

This deal from a recent Internatio­nal match showcases a concept that a disgruntle­d reader recently too me to task over what he perceived as an elementary error by both the featured bidders and yours truly for failing to chastise those bidders.

After a similar start to the previous auction as in today’s, the reader stipulated that any non-beginner holding the South cards would make the jump rebid of three hearts, the so-called “super accept” show four-card support for the transfer-bidder’s suit while trying to stave off enemy competitio­n.

Unimpresse­d by his minimum count and unswayed by my reader’s imprecatio­ns, this South did not jump to three hearts. (I wouldn’t either!).

And the opponents did compete further! Not so bad for North-south as, against adequate defense, any landing spot East-west found after East’s double was due to go down.

But South took the push to three hearts to land in a very delicate spot that would have benefited from a play strategy suggested last week: decide what “Job One” should be!

As it went, South won the diamond ace to play a heart to the Queen and a second round back to the King and ace. Unfortunat­ely that allowed the defenders to set up the heart nine for their fifth trick. Even winning the first two hearts with dummy’s honours wouldn’t have sufficed as South would still have diamond losers in dummy to do something with after trumps were drawn; he could ruff the third diamond high but that wouldn’t be quite enough.

Better: drive out the spade ace first and only then attack trumps so that a discard of one of dummy’s diamonds could be arranged.

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