BRIDGE

The Mercury - - THE X-FILES - FRANK STE­WART

A MAN, A PLAN, DOWN ONE “You never men­tion your col­leagues,” I said to my friend the English pro­fes­sor. “Do any of them have in­ter­est­ing spe­cial­ties?”

“We have an au­thor­ity on palin­dromes,” the prof said: “Dr. Awk­ward.”

To­day’s de­clarer found the play at his slam awk­ward. He put up dummy’s king of clubs, and East won and re­turned a club. South threw a di­a­mond and took the queen. South next cashed the A-K of di­a­monds and ruffed a di­a­mond high. He led a spade to his king and ruffed his last di­a­mond high. He had no more side losers, but it did him no good: When he led a trump to his ace, West dis­carded, and East got a trump trick.

Able Was I “Able was I ere I saw Elba,” the prof mut­tered at South, “and ere I saw you play the dummy.” South can lead a trump to his ace at Trick Three. When West shows out, South con­tin­ues thus: A-K of di­a­monds, K-A of spades, spade ruff, di­a­mond ruff high, club ruff, di­a­mond ruff high. He wins the last two tricks with high trumps.

Daily Ques­tion

You hold: ♠ A 8 5 2 ♥ Q 10 5 3 ♦ 65 ♣ K Q 2. Your part­ner opens one di­a­mond, you re­spond one heart, he bids two clubs and you try 2NT. Part­ner then bids three di­a­monds. What do you say?

AN­SWER: Your part­ner sug­gests six di­a­monds, four clubs and ex­tra strength. With a min­i­mum 6-4 hand, he would have re­bid two di­a­monds. Bid three spades, show­ing some­thing in spades but doubt about notrump. If part­ner has 3, K 6, A Q J 10 7 4, A J 9 4, five di­a­monds will be best. South dealer N-S vul­ner­a­ble

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