Sun Sentinel Broward Edition
South in today’s deal was Michael Ware, from New Zealand, who today is a well-known expert in his part of the world. This deal was played in an Australian Youth competition in 2004, when Ware was still in University. Five no-trump was the Grand Slam Force, asking North to bid seven diamonds with two of the top three diamond honors. That was impossible of course, but Ware was willing to settle for just the king.
The six-club response showed either the ace or king of diamonds and Ware bid the grand slam.
Ware won the opening heart lead with dummy’s ace, discarding a spade from his hand. He had to judge the best line of play for this deal. He needed a 3-2 split in trumps, so he started by cashing the king of diamonds and leading a trump to his ace. He left the last trump outstanding for the moment and cashed the ace of spades and ruffed a spade in dummy. East discarded a heart on the second spade. This might seem like a stroke of luck for declarer, but it was just the payoff for Ware’s careful play. Had East been able to overruff the dummy, no other line of play would have fared any better.
Ware led a club to his ace and ruffed another spade with dummy’s last trump. A heart ruff to his hand allowed him to draw the last trump. He cashed the king of spades, felling the queen, and claimed the balance.