Chicago Sun-Times (Sunday)



Cy the Cynic’s former occupation, if ever he had one, is a topic of mystery at my club. For some reason, Cy won’t talk about it — except to favor us with gag answers to queries. “Cy, were you a clerk?”

“For a while, but I felt defiled.” “Did you serve as an elected official?”

“I was devoted to that job.” “How about a doorman, Cy?” “No, I wouldn’t accept an entrylevel position.”

“Were you a jockey?”

“Only until my boss derided me.” Cy was West in today’s deal, and his defense was derided by the kibitzers, not to mention by East. Against South’s five diamonds, Cy led a club, and East took the ace and returned a club: queen, king, jack. The Cynic then shifted to a trump.

South took the A-K of trumps and next the A-K of spades. He cashed the ace of hearts, ruffed a heart, ruffed a spade in dummy, ruffed a heart and ruffed another spade. South could then ruff a heart with his last trump and win the 13th trick with his good fifth spade. Making five.

Cy’s defense resembled his career as a history teacher: There wasn’t any future in it. South was sure to have five or more spades and likely to have five diamonds, hence a singleton heart. At Trick Three, Cy must lead a third club, giving South a ruff-sluff.

Since South has no more fast losers, a discard won’t help him, but he will have to spend a trump he would otherwise use to set up and cash the long spade.

No other defense beats five diamonds. Try it and see.

North dealer

N-S vulnerable

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