Goren Bridge Society

Bermuda bowl gem

Both vulnerable, South deals

Today’s deal is from the recent Bermuda Bowl held in Lyon, France. Many tables reached the aggressive four spade contract. At first glance, it seems that four spades can be defeated as long as West shifts to a club after leading the ace of diamonds. If East can win his king of clubs and shift to hearts, the contract will fail. Declarer, however, can still succeed by rising with the ace of clubs and playing the ace and another spade. West can do nothing to prevent declarer from setting up the clubs before using the queen of spades as an entry to cash them, discarding all of his potential heart losers. This line of play requires a lucky lie of the trumps, but it is all there.

At one table in a match between teams from Bulgaria and the USA, the defense took a surprising turn. On opening lead for Bulgaria was Julian Stefanov. After leading the ace of diamonds, Stefanov shifted to a low heart! The idea of leading low from king doubleton would not occur to most of us. The USA declarer, one of the world’s best players, won this with his queen of hearts and led a low spade. Stefanov stepped up with his king and continued with a high diamond, ruffed by declarer. Declarer cashed dummy’s queen and jack of spades, drawing trumps, and led a heart to his jack. Stefanov won with his now singleton king for the third defensive trick, and there was no way for declarer to avoid the loss of a club trick later.

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Printable version | Jun 1, 2020 3:17:28 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/bermuda-bowl-gem/article24359461.ece

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