Daily Bridge Club

Sim­ple Satur­day

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - CLASSIFIED - By FRANK STE­WART

“Sim­ple Satur­day” col­umns fo­cus on im­prov­ing ba­sic tech­nique and log­i­cal think­ing.

Ev­ery player makes mis­takes. Some are tech­ni­cal, some mis­judg­ments, some sim­ply aber­ra­tions. But any mis­take should be a les­son on its way to be­ing learned.

Against to­day’s 3NT, West led a low di­a­mond, and South let East’s jack win and also ducked the re­turn of the queen. South won the third di­a­mond and let the nine of clubs ride. East took the king and led a heart, but South had nine tricks: a spade, a di­a­mond, three hearts and four clubs.

Was a mis­take made?

West can see that to set up his di­a­monds is fu­tile; he has no en­try to cash them. At Trick Two, he must over­take East’s queen with his king and shift to the ten of spades.

That de­fense makes a two-trick dif­fer­ence: East gets three spades plus his king of clubs. It’s true that West may place South with a high card in spades for his 2NT re­sponse, but the spade shift is still West’s best chance to beat the con­tract.

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Youhold: KQ43 642 Q J 4 K 8 3. Your part­ner opens one heart, you bid one spade and he

DAILY QUES­TION

raises to two spades. What do you say?

AN­SWER: This case is close. If part­ner has a sound sin­gle raise with four-card sup­port, you might make a game. Still, your pat­tern is flat, your heart hold­ing is the worst and the value of your mi­nor-suit honors is ques­tion­able. Pass if not vul­ner­a­ble. If vul­ner­a­ble, with more to gain by scor­ing game, you might try 2NT. North dealer N-S vul­ner­a­ble

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