Main     Quiz 7J62 by Richard Pavlicek    

Jettison Jamboree

The jettison play (unblocking by discarding) is a useful tactic but often unnoticed until too late. See if you have the foresight to bring home these three ambitious contracts.

1. 3 NT by South

S 10 3
H 9 4 3
D 3
C A K 6 5 4 3 2
Lead: H 5TableEast plays H Q
S A J 9 2
D A J 10 2
C 9 8 7


With a normal 2-1 club break, it looks like 10 easy tricks; but then you notice the problem. Your club spots are all higher than dummy’s, so the suit will be blocked after winning the A-K.

The solution begins by ducking the first heart and winning the next. Then cross to dummy with a club and lead the H 9 to pitch a club. The opponents can win only four heart tricks, and the clubs will now run. If East instead shifted to a spade or a diamond at trick two, you would win the ace and duck a club.

West held:

S Q-8-7-6 H K-10-7-5-2 D Q-9-4 C J

2. 6 H by South

S 5 4 3
H 7 4
D Q 6 5 3 2
C 7 4 3
Lead: C ATableEast plays C 9
S A J 9
H A K Q J 10 8
D A K 10 7


Dummy’s five-card diamond suit is a pretty sight, but there’s a hitch. The missing diamonds will usually split 3-1, and if either opponent has J-x-x, the suit will be blocked. With no side entry to dummy, the fifth diamond will be lost.

This time the crucial play comes early. At trick one you must refuse to ruff and pitch a diamond. Now your 12 tricks are clear to run. The only time you will fail is if diamonds are 4-0, but in that event the contract was virtually hopeless no matter what you did.

West held:

S Q-10-2 H 2 D J-9-4 C A-Q-J-10-5-2

3. 6 S by South

S A K 3
H A K 3
D 3
C J 8 7 6 4 3
Lead: C KTable
S Q J 10 9 2
H Q J 10 9 2
D Q 10 2


You certainly have your bidding shoes on, but 12 tricks are in view with a normal trump break. Ruff the club lead, give up a diamond, and ruff the club return. The problem is how to return to hand after ruffing two diamonds without suffering a heart ruff.

Ruff a diamond high, lead the H 3 to your queen, and ruff your last diamond high. Next lead the S 3 to your hand to draw trumps, as you pitch both top hearts from dummy to leave your hand high. The crowd goes wild!

West held:

S 5-4 H 8-6-5-4 D J-9-7-6 C A-K-2


© 2013 Richard Pavlicek