This deal is from an online IMP game. After Souths 1 opening, North was obliged to bid 1 NT since he lacked the values for a two-over-one response. South had a borderline jump shift but chose to bid only 2 because of the anemic texture in his suits. North raised to game with his excellent playing potential.
West had no knowledge of dummys long diamonds and chose to lead the Q. Declarer won the king and led the 2 to dummys queen as East ducked, then the 4 back to the king, learning the bad news. The K was led, covered and ruffed, then declarer tried to cash the A. Oops. East ruffed with the 8 (South could not overruff) and cashed the A leaving declarer in a hopeless predicament down two.
Declarer violated an important principle: If there is no clear-cut path to making your contract, you should work on your side suit before drawing trumps. After the Q won, declarer should next lead the A; East ruffs and South overruffs; then a heart is led to the jack and ace. Easts best return is a club to the king and ace, but declarer does not ruff in dummy. No matter what West returns, the diamonds can be set up, losing one more trick. Lay out a deck of cards and try it its a good exercise in suit establishment.
© 1998 Richard Pavlicek