Main     Article 7A02 by Richard Pavlicek    

Slam Bidding Gadgetry

This deal is from the Swiss team event at the recent Fort Lauderdale Sectional. My son Rich was North and I was South, and we reached a good slam that was missed at the other table. The bidding made use of three effective slam gadgets: a splinter bid, key-card Blackwood, and a follow-up to ask for the queen of trumps.

6 S by South

None Vul
S A Q J 3
H A K 8 7 2
D 3
C A 10 3
S 9 6 5
H J 9 3
D Q 8 6 5 4
C 8 2
TableS K
H Q 6 5 4
D K 9 7 2
C Q 9 6 5
Lead: D 5S 10 8 7 4 2
H 10
D A J 10
C K J 7 4


All Pass
1 H
4 D
5 C
5 NT
1 S
4 NT
5 D
6 S

Rich’s unusual jump to 4 D showed a singleton or void in diamonds and four-card spade support. Despite my topless spade suit, I sensed the good fit and bid 4 NT (key-card Blackwood); Rich answered 5 C showing zero or three key cards (obviously three). Still concerned about the weak trumps, I next bid 5 D to ask for the spade queen; 5 NT confirmed this card and also showed the H K in our methods, so we reached the slam. (Without the spade queen Rich would bid 5 S and I would pass.)

West led the D 5 to the king, ace; then a spade was led to the jack and king. The diamond return ruffed out the queen; then the S A was cashed to reveal it would have been better (though illogical) to cash it first. Next came the H A; heart ruff (with S 10); spade to jack, then hearts were continued to establish the long heart. This provided 12 tricks without needing to guess clubs.


© 1991 Richard Pavlicek