THE NEA BRIDGE by Phillip Alder
A SUIT COMBINATION IN ANOTHER SETTING
Farrah Fawcett said, “God gave women intuition and femininity. Used properly, the combination easily jumbles the brain of any man I’ve ever met.”
Today’s trump combination might jumble declarer’s brain, especially if he remembers yesterday’s deal. South is in five diamonds. West leads a low spade. East takes two tricks in the suit, then shifts to a club to North’s queen. How should declarer continue?
On the second round of the auction, if North-South use support doubles, South has a perfect hand with exactly three-card heart support. But if North-South do not employ this gadget, South should raise to two hearts.
North’s two-spade cue-bid is an artificial game-force, asking South to do something intelligent. Here, South cannot do more than rebid his diamond suit. Then North might jump to four hearts, but let’s suppose he settles his partner into five diamonds.
South must draw trumps without loss. In yesterday’s deal, he could afford one loser, so cashed the ace first. Here, though, he should start with a diamond to his queen. When West’s jack drops, declarer returns to the dummy with a club (or a heart) and plays a diamond to his 10. Then he draws East’s last trump and claims.
Note that four hearts can be made. If East starts with three rounds of spades, North does best to discard a diamond from his hand, but here he could ruff. Then declarer, after drawing trumps, makes the same play in the diamond suit.