goren bridge Society

Play or defend?

Have a look at today’s deal and decide whether you would prefer to play or defend three no trump after a low spade lead. The opening spade lead goes to the five, nine, and jack. A low club to dummy’s king wins the trick and declarer continues with a low club, hoping that West’s ace is now bare. No luck as East wins with the jack and returns a spade. West cashes two spades and continues the suit while he still has the ace of clubs. South discards all of dummy’s clubs on the spades while he wins the fourth spade in his hand. He cashes all three high hearts in dummy and one high diamond. This gives South a perfect count on the hand, so he continues with a fourth heart to East, who must lead away from his queen of diamonds to give South his ninth trick.

Do you choose to declare? Not so fast. West should watch what South discards from dummy on the queen and ace of spades. West should play a fourth spade only if dummy has shed both low red cards. Just one club discard from dummy and West should cash the ace of clubs and lead a red card himself to defeat the contract. We defend, right?

No, we don’t! As the cards lie, South can always prevail by continuing with the queen of clubs from dummy after the king holds. We choose to declare!

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2020 3:17:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/play-or-defend/article32237481.ece

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