As the Trojan War wore on, with its post-combat bridge games, the Greeks began to use sneaky maneuvers on their enemies.

In today's deal, a Trojan declarer took the ace of trumps and led a heart. Everyone in Asia Minor knew this was a singleton (South had bid the other three suits), but Nestor, West for the Greeks, played low.

When dummy won, South thanked West for the gift and began a cross-ruff: ace of diamonds, diamond ruff, heart ruff, diamond ruff, heart ruff. South next led his last diamond, but Nestor ruffed and led a trump. South won and took the ace of clubs, but West won the last three tricks with the king of clubs, the ace of hearts and a trump.

South was done in by a Greek gift. After he wins the first heart, he must lead a high heart from dummy and pitch a club.

West wins and leads another trump, but South wins, ruffs two diamonds in dummy and runs the hearts. He discards all his losers before West can ruff, losing a heart and two trumps.


You hold: S A K 9 6 H 4 D A J 9 8 C A 10 5 2. Dealer, at your right, opens one diamond. What do you say?

ANSWER: Pass. No other action describes your hand, and the hand is better for defense than for offense anyhow. If the next player bids one heart and the opening bidder raises to two hearts or bids 1NT, you'll double, suggesting a strong hand with length in diamonds as well as in spades and clubs, the two unbid suits.

North-South vulnerable


S 7 4 3 2

H K Q J 10 7

D 5

C J 4 3


S Q J 10 8

H A 6 5 2

D Q 10 4

C K 7


S 5

H 9 8 3

D K 7 6 3 2

C Q 9 8 6


S A K 9 6

H 4

D A J 9 8

C A 10 5 2

South West North East

1 D Pass 1 H Pass

1 S Pass 2 S Pass

3 C Pass 4 S All Pass

Opening lead -- S Q

(C) 1999, Los Angeles Times Syndicate