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Longboat Key Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2011 6 years ago

Deal Us In: Seven cards can be the right fit

by: Donna Swan

It is often stressed that a combined holding of at least eight cards in a suit makes for a satisfactory trump suit. However, a seven-card fit, especially in a major suit, is often adequate.

I do now know why East, who was sure of at least six tricks in the diamond suit, behaved tamely throughout the auction. South opened in his long suit and took advantage of East’s silence to show his four-card major suit at the one level. North took a preference to clubs, and East finally bid his diamond suit.

This gave South the chance to make a fine bid. He knew he wanted to play a game contract but was not sure where, so he showed his power with a cue-bid of three diamonds. That surely denied a diamond stopper, because with the enemy’s suit under control, he would have bid some number of notrump. North described the other feature of his hand, three-card spade support. He would have immediately supported spades with four cards.

South decided that North could not have more than two diamonds based on the auction. If that were the case, the defenders could not force South with diamonds and cause him to lose control of the trump suit. South boldly bid the game in spades, his known seven-card suit, rather than clubs, his 10-card fit.

After a diamond lead, declarer lost exactly three tricks in the red suits. He would have lost the same tricks in a five-club contract.

To download a PDF of this week's Deal Us In page, click here.  


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