As South, can you find the plays to guarantee making each contract?No fair peeking at the answers!
How sweet it is! Did you pounce on Easts K? If you did you can say goodbye to your contract. This would remove a crucial entry and you could no longer establish and use the diamonds. Its a bit painful but you must duck the K. Dont accept a Trojan horse!
Assume a club is returned. Win in dummy, lead the Q and overtake it in your hand look at those beautiful diamond spots. Just continue leading diamonds to smoke out the jack, and you have nine certain tricks: two clubs, five diamonds, and dummys two aces.
You have eight top tricks, and the heart suit will supply another even if the J fails to drop. The danger is the spade suit if East gains the lead in hearts, he might lead twice through your Q and allow the defenders to run four spades. Note, however, that if West gains the lead this threat vanishes.
Therein lies the key. Win the Q in dummy, and lead a low heart to the eight. If it loses and West tries to shut out dummy with a diamond return, you can win the A and cash the 10 to discard the A a neat jettison play.
1. minor-suit Stayman
After winning the Q you have six top tricks, and you can establish two in hearts and one in diamonds. The problem is you may have to give up the lead twice, and a spade through your A-J will hurt.
The solution is to force East to waste an ace. Cross to dummy in clubs and lead a low heart. If East takes the ace youll get three heart tricks and the battle is over. So assume the Q wins. Cross again in clubs and lead a low diamond. Similar story! Finally, if the K wins, just lead another heart to ensure nine tricks.
© 1998 Richard Pavlicek