There is nothing sadder than having winning tricks in the dummy that you have no way of reaching. We have all been there, done that. South’s jump to four hearts describes a great hand. A bid of three hearts would simply be competitive.
West led the king of diamonds, and declarer liked his dummy — if he could ever use it. The danger was that he could lose three club tricks in addition to the diamond. The opening pre-empt suggested another line of play, which depended on West having no more than two trump.
West won the king of diamonds and led the ace. Declarer ruffed with the seven of trump, and East sluffed a spade. When West dropped the queen on the first trump lead, declarer could claim his contract. Declarer continued with two more high trumps and cashed and ace and king of spades.
The scene was set for the defense to come to declarer’s aid by providing him with an entry to the dummy. Declarer gave East a trick he did not want by leading his deuce of hearts to dummy’s nine. East got a trick he did not expect and was forced to lead a black suit. No matter what he did, he had to give the declarer an entry to the dummy to enable him to take two club pitches on the queen and Jack of spades.
The key play was declarer ruffing the second diamond with the seven of trump. If he had trumped with the deuce, East could have prevented the end play by putting his nine and six of trump under declarer’s winners, and declarer would have no way of putting East on lead.
Donna Swan is a resident of Longboat Key, an ardent bridge player and an American Contract Bridge League certified director who plays “for the fun of it.”
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